ONCE UPON A TIME Three Blind Men was created in early 2016 by three men who weren’t really blind, just bald and thirsty. However, in the midst of an epic night out they saw the light and set out to bring the very best craft beers to Hanoi.
THE FREE HOUSE To promote the diversity and range of craft beer that was starting to be brewed in Vietnam, Three Blind Men established Standing Bar taproom (b. November 2016) on the shores of Trúc Bạch Lake. Committed to tapping everything new and unique, anything seasonal and limited, the number of taps was simply never going to be enough, but wall space ran out at 19. Standing Bar has continued to turn the taps ever since, tapping more than 300 different craft beers and ciders to date, making it the go-to destination in Hanoi for craft beer lovers.
YES WE CAN Restricted to kegs, Growlers and Riggers quickly become craft colloquialisms but by 2018 the ‘yes we can’ movement was gaining momentum, new technology enabling brewers to reach consumers beyond the limitations of tap service. Three Blind Men celebrated this by launching The Bottle Shop(b. April 2018), a venue devoted to absolutely everything craft packaged in bottle and can. Ubiquitous shelf space meant the recently emancipated craft consumer could now choose from more than 100 different brews at any time and a fridge-digging culture ensued.
CRAFT CULTURE In the following years craft culture evolved beyond the realms of beer and cider with a blossoming range of craft spirits flavoured with local herbs, fruits and spices, and distilled with a quality to more than match foreign imports. The craft community meanwhile embraced new trends to welcome Kombucha and Kvass, Hard Soda and Hard Seltzer, plus Vietnam’s very first alcohol-free craft beer, to the beverage stage, amongst other experimentation and innovation.
A NEW ORDER Consumer behaviour was already changing rapidly in Vietnam by 2019, but the transition was massively accelerated by the new world order with e-commerce exploding to meet the demands of locked-down populations worldwide. By the end of 2020 more than 5% of total retail sales for goods and services in Vietnam were the result of e-commerce. Three Blind Men began to build online and in March 2022 finally launched this platform – The Bottle Shop Online.
Now everybody can drink good beer. Anytime. Anywhere. #allbeersarenotcreatedequal