Alias, derived & guest beers

Breww is extremely flexible and understands the different types of beer you have, in terms of how they’re produced. It’s important to ensure you set up your beers correctly to get the most out of Breww, so here’s a guide to the different types of beer in Breww and when to use them.

In Breww, we separate out the following different types of beer:

  • Standard beers (AKA just “Beers”)
  • Alias beers
  • Derived beers
  • Guest beers

Standard beers

This is likely the majority of your beers and should be used for the following (unless they are a better fit to alias or derived beers):

  • All beers that you brew yourself
  • All beers that you brew on behalf of others as a contract brewer
  • All beers that are your product, but another contract brewer brews on your behalf

Standard beers have all the normal features that you’d expect - you can create recipes, batches, manage your brew day, fermentation analysis, etc.

Before creating your standard beers in Breww, it’s worth reading through how alias and derived beers work to ensure you set your beers up in the best way possible. Please note: We highly recommend not creating duplicate single-unit products (such as smallpack singles and single kegs) that are built of the same component stock of an existing standard beer product. These products should instead be created as either alias or derived products to ensure stock is calculated accurately.

Alias and derived beers

Keep reading for a full explanation of the differences between an alias beer and a derived beer, but for a quick reference as to which you need, please see the below diagram:

graph TD Q1[Are there extra ingredients/stock items added to the beer vs the standard/base beer?] Q1 --> |Yes|DB[Use a derived beer] Q1 --> |No|Q2[Do you want to keep distinct stock levels of each beer?] Q2 --> |Yes - separate stock levels|DB Q2 --> |No - share stock pool|GB[Use an alias beer]

If you’re still not sure if a beer should be an alias beer or a derived beer, then please keep reading.

Alias beers

An alias beer in Breww is when you have a standard beer that is sold under 2 (or more) brand names, but the beer itself is identical, and you’re happy for the stock of both brands of beer to be one combined number. You can then sell both brands, as different names (and even with different ABVs) and your customers have no idea that these two “beers” are the same.

This is ideal when you have, for example, a bitter that you sell all year round, and for a local beer festival, you sell a “Festival bitter”. The content of the bottle/cask/etc is the same, but you put a different label on it (rebadge) just before the sale. You initially keep it as your “Bitter” and only at the point of sale do you relabel it as “Festival bitter”.

It should be noted that Breww will not keep a stock distinction between your “Bitter” and your “Festival bitter”. If you have 10 casks of “Bitter” in stock, you also have 10 casks of “Festival bitter”. Selling a cask of one, will reduce the available stock of both to 9. If you have auto-assignment and auto-assemble settings enabled for your deliveries, Breww will treat both products on the order as the same. (For distinct stock levels, see “Derived beers” below).

You cannot ever brew an alias beer. You always brew the standard beer and package it into the standard beer. The alias beer will simply pull stock from the standard beer.

Setting up an alias beer product (products sharing a single stock pool)

  • Go to the base “standard beer” (by ProductsBeersView beers) in Breww.
  • Click the “Add new alias” button in the alias & derived beers tab.
  • Once the alias beer has been created, you’ll need to create the alias products.
  • Head to the product page for the standard beer product you want to create an alias product for.
  • Go to the “Alias products” tab and add the alias products, selecting the alias beer you just created, to allow you to sell the beer under the other name.

Derived beers

Derived beers are similar in concept to an alias beer, but there are some key differences. The primary difference is that the stock levels are kept distinct. We’d recommend a derived beer is used instead of an alias beer when there’s something different to the beer itself, but this difference is after fermentation, for example, the addition of a flavouring syrup, different carbonation, etc. An example would be when you have a standard “Bitter” that you sell and at Christmastime you offer a “Christmas Bitter” which is your standard bitter beer, but with the addition of a flavouring syrup.

If your recipes are different prior to the end of fermentation, even if similar, we’d suggest creating separate “standard beers” for them.

Setting up a derived beer product (products with separate stock pools)

  • Go to the base “standard beer” (by ProductsBeersView beers) in Breww.
  • Click the “Add new derived” button in the alias & derived beers tab.
  • Head to ProductsNew productand create a new product just like you would a normal product (a derived product doesn’t “sit” under the standard base product as alias products do).
  • Simply pick the derived beer from the list of component packaged beers when creating the product.

As with an alias beer, the derived beer doesn’t have its own recipes, and you cannot brew a batch of a derived beer. However, unlike alias beers, when you are packaging (racking) a batch of the base standard beer, you can package it directly into the derived beer product. This means that (to use the example above), you can brew a batch of your bitter and when it comes to racking the beer, you can package some as your “Bitter” and some as your “Christmas Bitter”. At this point, as with all rackings, you can record the stock item (flavouring) that was used for stock tracking and costing purposes.

If you packaged 10 casks of the “Bitter” and 10 of the “Christmas Bitter”, you’d see 10 of each in stock (20 total). If you then sold a cask of the “Christmas Bitter”, the stock available for that would drop to 9 and the “Bitter” would remain at 10. This is the most significant difference between derived beers and alias beers.

You may also choose to use a derived beer over an alias beer, even if the actual beer is identical, but you want to keep track of the stock levels differently. For example, you package them into bottles with different labels. If you’re out of stock of one brand, but not the other.

It’s also possible to convert the stock of one beer to its derived beer, or the beer it is derived from. To do this, go to the product you’d like to convert and click ActionsConvert stock between related beers.

Guest beers

Guest beers in Breww work completely differently to other beers and this should be used when you simply buy in someone else’s product and wish to sell it on, with batch tracking. Guest beers will never go through a brewing process in Breww. They can also be used for other products (such as cider) where you’d like the same functionality to apply. Duty will never be charged for guest beers.

Setting up a guest beer

  • Go to the Stock items section and create a Stock Item with the type of Guest beer. To receive your stock of the guest beer, you use Purchase Orders and Inventory Receipts, just as you would for your ingredients, packaging, etc.
  • To sell the guest beer, you can create a product which is linked to the guest beer Stock Item. The products’ stock level will always match that of the Stock Item, and it can be sold on orders and delivered to customers just like with other “Stock item” products, such as glassware.