About us

Some news about our brewery 

Berlin, Thursday 16.04.2020

We thought you might want to learn about what is happening up in Reinickendorf. We’ve been putting aon a happy face the last few weeks, mainly because we didn’t want to be a downer. We are pretty good at pretending that everything is fine. Peter is from Canada so if you ask him how he’s doing, even if he was literally on fire, he would say “fine, how are you?”

Anyway, we are not literally on fire, but things are pretty far from “fine.” So here’s a little update on what’s really going down in our brick palace in Reinickendorf. Spoiler Alert: things haven’t been easy.

Like pretty much all our friends who have small businesses, we lost about 98% of our revenue overnight. We can’t really complain; closures and precautions are designed to keep us and others safe from the Coronavirus. We’re not the only ones who lost our normal revenue. Restaurants, bars, shops, clubs and more are having a tough time right now.

We had big plans for this year: Growth! Engagement! Visit our treasured existing producers! Meet new producers! Introduce more people to our beer and coffee! Make new friends! Pay ourselves respectable salaries! Now, that all has to wait.

What did we do?

We realized that we had only one chance to keep the brewery afloat: pivot into an online beer shop. We had to try to make up all that lost revenue by increasing direct sales on our webshop (motelminibar.com) 

  • We furloughed our only employee. They’re now on Kurzarbeitergeld. 
  • We reached out to our bank, who agreed to defer our loan payments (but not the interest payments) 
  • We reached out to our landlord and requested a partial rent reduction out of solidarity with us and our gastronomy partners. They said no. They suggested we take out another loan to pay them. Which is kinda like paying a credit card with another credit card. They flat-out said they are expecting 50% of their tenants to go bankrupt by May and then casually recoup lost rent revenue through the insolvency process. 
  • We applied for and were awarded government support (Sofort Hilfe II), enough to cover about 20% of our overhead for 3 months.
  • We offered a 20% discount on our webshop to encourage people to get used to staying home. Our margins are slim though, so we couldn’t keep discounting forever.
  • We used some of our extra time at home to translate the webshop into German, so we can be a bit more Deutschfreundlich :)
  • We ate a lot of Sausage Man Never Sleeps Sausages on the grill (we had a strategic reserve in our freezer).
  • AND we released some sweet merch! T-Shirts and Bags! Buy one! 

We also got incredible support from all of you! It really meant a lot to us. Each time a new order came through on the webshop we did a little dance and resisted the urge to hug/high five (we take social distancing very seriously here at Motel).

What are we gonna do now?

We’re still brewing beer and coffee! Actually we just released 2 very special beers, Melsheimer III and Melsheimer IV. In addition to our favourite delivery folks at GLS, we now offer Pick-Up at the brewery! Order and pay online on the webshop, then pick it up later in Reinickendorf :)

We’ll wave at you through the window. Our drinks are now available through our new friends Up & Coming and Blutop. We are also working on some other delivery ideas with Crow Cycle Courier Collective, Coffee Circle and gut.gut...

What are you gonna do now?

🛍 Keep – on buying Buy Motel wherever and whenever you see it!
👐 Share – Be that person that recommends Motel to your friend!
😎 Influence – Like, comment, share and tag us on social media! It’s free, and it’s very helpful for us. Let’s get that algorithm working in our favour!
🐝 Support small and local businesses – Think twice before going to a giant supermarket. Try within your budget to buy your groceries in small shops or order food to-go from your favorite restaurant…

Our mission here at Motel has always been to work as directly as possible with our producers. We are part of a chain that ends with you but begins with coffee farmers in Kenya, hops farmers in Slovenia & Germany, Maltsters in the Germany and the UK, and many more. We want your support but more than anything we want to keep the chain intact.

Please think twice, or however many times you need to think before buying your food and drinks from a large corporate organization. Every Euro you spend with us or with one of our partners in the chain listed below, instead of on Dr. Oetker frozen pizza, is a Euro shared directly with people who have devoted their lives to making something they are passionate about in favor of financial security. So please take care of yourselves. You mean a lot to us, and to all the suppliers we work with.

Here is a couple places we recommend to spend some money: Gut.Gut., Lode & Stijn, Rocket Wine, jaja, Flaschbierschop, Hopfen & Malz, Distrikt Coffee, Mr. Susan, Companion Coffee, Cantine Sant’Ambroeus, Lager Lager, Getränkefeinkost, Gazzo Pizza, Estelle Dining, Kärrecho, Palsta, Populus, Rocket & Basil, Bonanza, Oslo, Dr. Maury, Chungking, Tinman, Ben Rahim, ...

If you have any questions, comments or feedback, get in touch!

Have a lovely day and we hope to see you again soon in real life, all healthy and chubby! In the meantime, blow up the webshop!

Cheers :)
Motel Team

Get in touch

Don't hesitate to drop us a line if you have any questions.

Cory Andreen - Head of Coffee cory@motelminibar.com

Peter Read - Head of Beer peter@motelminibar.com

Marie Stadelmann - Creative Director

Travis Wilson

Why Cans ?

In Germany, the glass bottle is king. But glass bottles let light and oxygen in. You know why everyone thinks things taste better out of a keg? Kegs block light and oxygen. Just like cans! Cans are basically just 100% recyclable mini-kegs. Cans are light and tough, glass is heavy and fragile. Thanks to the German Pfand System, 91% of all aluminum cans sold are recovered for recycling. The global rate is just 70%.