Sue Says – September 2017

September 8th, 2017 | Posted in: Sue Says

have to say the run up to our awards are exciting, exhausting and exhilarating all at the same time. Exciting because we never know what we are going to see, exhausting because there are a lot of pubs, bars, restaurants and hotels to check out, and exhilarating because when you get to a venue and it exceeds your expectations – it makes you proud to be part of this enterprising trade. And that was certainly the case this year. So well done everyone.

The feedback from the awards ceremony itself has been very good. But what struck me was the number of people who said there was a lovely warm feeling in the room. This brings me back to our mystery shoppers because this year they kept talking about ‘the whole experience’. It wasn’t just about the service, or the food, cocktails or welcome – it was all about how they felt when the entered compared to to how they felt when they left. I hope that everyone that came to the awards had a great experience, because our mystery shoppers certainly did.

Sometimes my social life collides with my business life – such was the case on a recent holiday to Mallorca. I was over for a friend’s 50th, who had flown in from Dubai… and James Mortimer and Lord Haughey were also guests as was Lisa Wishart from Lisini. So we all had an entertaining evening, great chat and good cocktails and James decided to take us a tour of the area the next day, which I’m happy to report we survived! We popped into Nikki Beach for a wee noisy, but we nearly choked at the €1,100 Euro’s price tag on a 5l bottle of Rose! Maguluf really is a resort of two halves – the very cheap and very cheerful, and the very expensive and the ‘look at me’ brigade. Great to experience at least once in a lifetime!

Sue Says September

As many of you will know I firmly believe in reporting on positive initiatives in the trade – whether that be new places opening, investment in venues, or pro-active people. I won’t and don’t carry stories that are quite clearly a dig at another company or that present the trade in a poor light. That’s not my job, and if we can’t say positive things about the trade…who will? I think the job of the DRAM is to promote the industry and support it. That does not mean to say that I wouldn’t campaign and do editorial on real issues …such as rates. But I am too long in the tooth to get caught up in company politics.

I popped into The Citizen, Mario Gizzi and Tony Conetta’s new place in Glasgow, just ahead of its opening. It pays homage to a newspaper that my father worked on back in 1959! I can’t wait to take him for a bite of lunch there when he is back from America. As you can imagine it looks great. Meanwhile they have got their Aparthotel on the go, a new development in St Andrews Square, Edinburgh, and there are another couple of other initiatives happening too. I don’t know where they get the energy!

Glenfiddich are hosting a special Festival at their Distillery the weekend on the 10th and 11th September. They are transforming the “valley of the deer” into their very own festival with Twin Atlantic headlining on Sunday 10th and the Fratellis on Monday 11thSeptember. They are doing it to say a big thanks to the Scottish hospitality industry for the continued support of Glenfiddich and William Grant & Sons. So if you are one of the lucky ones to get an invite… enjoy! More next month.

Talking of Wm Grant & Sons… they have just announced that UK Director of Prestige and Great-Great Granddaughter of William Grant, Kirsten Grant Meikle, has just relocated to the USA to take on the role of US Commercial Strategy Director. She will play a critical role in continuing to build the US’s Commercial Excellence platform, beginning with a focus in the Prestige arena. For the last few years she has been instrument in implementing transformational change within the UK business, leading several initiatives, including the development of its on-trade sales team, the implementation of a Customer Relationship Management system, and most recently, the creation of our UK Prestige Team. I wish Kirsten all the very best. I at least I now have someone, other than my brother to have a drink with when I’m in New York!

My last word is on the awards (of course) just to say I hope everyone likes their new trophies. We had them specially crafted from acrylic… which I am hoping will solve the issue of them getting damaged!

The following two tabs change content below.

DRAM News Team

Editor at DRAM Magazine
DRAM magazine is Scotland’s leading monthly licensed trade magazine. It has been dedicated exclusively to the on-trade in Scotland for the past 23 years. It is independently owned, edited and published in Scotland. The DRAM is innovative, creative and original. First with the news, and the people in the news. Covering all the latest information on pubs, bars, clubs, restaurants and hotels in Scotland.

Wetherspoon’s preliminary results show a healthy sales growth but Martin slams remainers

Fri 16th March 2018

J D Wetherspoon’s Preliminary results (For the 26 weeks ended 28 January 2018) show an increase in revenue of 3.6% to £830.4m, with l... Read more.

Three in a row for Buzzworks as it makes The Sunday Times 100 Best Companies to Work for 2018 list … again

Wed 14th March 2018

Congratulations to Buzzworks Holdings who have once again made it into the The Sunday Times 100 Best Companies to Work for 2018. It’s ... Read more.

Positive news from Tennent’s as market share and revenues grow

Wed 14th March 2018

Tennent’s owners C&C Group has revealed that Scotland’s best selling lager has grown market share in the Independent Free Tr... Read more.

Design Focus: A new era for The Kirkhouse in Shettleston

Thu 8th March 2018

There is a little corner of Shettleston that will probably forever be associated with the Healy family – who since taking over The Kirkhou... Read more.

Design Focus: Malones Irish Bar Edinburgh

Wed 7th March 2018

There is nothing nicer than going to a pub in the middle of the day to find it buzzing and that was the case when I visited the new Malones... Read more.

Maxxium UK rebrands to Edrington-Beam Suntory and relocates to Glasgow

Wed 7th March 2018

Spirits company, Maxxium UK, the UK sales, marketing and distribution company owned by Edrington and Beam Suntory, will be known as Edringto... Read more.

Six by Nico gets set for Edinburgh launch

Thu 15th February 2018

Chef Nico Simeone is set to introduce his successful dining concept ‘Six by Nico’ to Edinburgh this April. ‘Six by Nico&#... Read more.

Hanoi Bike Shop: Dog lovers urgently required for First Dates

Wed 7th February 2018

Vietnamese restaurant Hanoi Bike Shop, in Glasgow’s West End, is set to host its own version of popular Channel 4 show ‘First Da... Read more.

Buzzworks celebrate 9.2% rise in profits as turnover hits £14.8m

Tue 30th January 2018

Buzzworks, the award-winning Ayrshire-based hospitality group, owned by Kenny, Colin and Alison Blair, celebrated a rise in turnover of 15.6... Read more.


Fri 26th January 2018

Edinburgh Gin is making it easier for romantics just in time for the 14th February with its revamped 2018 Valentine’s limited-edition ... Read more.

Strong performance from Diageo but Smirnoff see sales dip

Thu 25th January 2018

Diageo has reported a strong performance with operating profit up 6.1% on net sales of £6.5bn. ... Read more.

Top 5 Malt whiskies to celebrate Burns Day

Thu 25th January 2018

Malt whisky accounts for 16.1% of all whisky sales, while blends account for 61.7%. Top 5 Malt whiskies Glenfiddich 12 year old Glenmorangie... Read more.

Burns didn’t die of alcohol, more matters of the heart

Thu 25th January 2018

People have speculated that Burns died of alcohol excess and possibly a sexual disease, but that was probably just the view of his biographe... Read more.

Scotland rules!

Thu 25th January 2018

Scotland’s most famous man is Robert Burns. But there was a somewhat murky side to our famed poet. It’s well documented that he had 13 c... Read more.

Burns painting turned out to be a bargain!

Thu 25th January 2018

Stephen Barnes bought a painting of Burns for less than £1,000 and when he got the painting authenticated, he found out it was actually wor... Read more.

Isle of Arran partners with Burns Unbroke

Thu 25th January 2018

Isle of Arran Distillers is sponsoring Burns Unbroke, a brand new multi-arts Robert Burns Festival. The event which takes place at Summerhal... Read more.

Whyte & Mackay sponsors 2018 Glasgow Comedy Festival

Wed 24th January 2018

Whyte & Mackay is sponsoring the 2018 Glasgow International Comedy Festival. The long-running festival is the flagship event of the Glas... Read more.

A gin that celebrates Byron

Wed 24th January 2018

Speyside Distillery – which is better known for its single malt Scotch whisky – has launched a new limited edition gin with bota... Read more.

What are your predictions for 2018?

Tue 23rd January 2018



Tue 23rd January 2018

The Tree House in Ayr re-opened at the end of last year after a £400,000 transformation by owners Buzzworks. The restaurant, which has been... Read more.