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Alex4mula

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They didn’t honor any points for me. Personally I will never order from them again. Same name but not same values. Sorry.
 

Nextech

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They didn’t honor any points for me. Personally I will never order from them again. Same name but not same values. Sorry.
Same here, Alex. Didn't honor my points even after sending out the email saying we should now see them. Sorry you're dealing with the same. Fortunately there are still a few great options out there to support now (RiteBrew, Atlantic, GF, LP, etc).
 

Alex4mula

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I don’t remember them expiring before. They lost a big customer. I probably spent over $3k over last 3yrs.
 

mashpaddled

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I do not get this move to no fractions on grain orders. The same time is taken to weigh and pour out a pound compared to a 1/2 pound... My LHBS has moved to the same thing and it sucks! You can't lose sight of why your customers use your services in the first place. Grain is a loser when it comes to shipping outside of pallets, so having a local shop is important to keep this hobby economical. But if you can't make your recipe or need to buy a lb of roasted malt to use .25lb it gets kind of stupid imho.

The revenue isn't the same but the labor cost is the same. Having an employee weighing out $0.15 of grain at a time isn't making the business money. There was a time when selling in small increments than a pound wasn't much of an option. Shops started selling in smaller increments to draw customers but as the market shrinks and consolidates the competition isn't there to make the labor cost valuable.

I don’t remember them expiring before. They lost a big customer. I probably spent over $3k over last 3yrs.

They've been expiring points for several years now.
 
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Those who have worked in corporate information technology know that data migration to a new system is essential but often thankless.

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Yesfan

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FWIW, I ordered from them this past Tuesday. I ordered their "Mashing Made Cooler" plumbing hardware to replace the ancient brass one I bought from them when I first started AG brewing. I got my order in this past Friday, a day earlier than expected.

I currently have 67pts. I don't know if my points were also erased or if I even had any as I hadn't bought from them in a very long time. They're not the same store they used to be, but this last experience was a good one. Same with NB when I bought my scales just recently. I'm very happy with that purchase as well.
 

Bassman2003

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The revenue isn't the same but the labor cost is the same. Having an employee weighing out $0.15 of grain at a time isn't making the business money. There was a time when selling in small increments than a pound wasn't much of an option. Shops started selling in smaller increments to draw customers but as the market shrinks and consolidates the competition isn't there to make the labor cost valuable.



They've been expiring points for several years now.
I can't disagree with the reality you are speaking of but I have chosen to go to a different LHBS that I never used in the past to fill my grain orders which also includes buying incidentals. Not only is the previous shop not going under 1LB increments, they are not combining it all into one bag. So I have to go through each ingredient, measure out the correct amount and combine them to mill before I brew. No thanks.

They might as well stop offering all grain because that is not serving the need. Strange that Covid seems to be killing homebrew shops. I wouldn't think the hobby would be affected, especially when folks had more spare time on their hands.
 
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FWIW, there are couple (maybe more) on-line home brew stores that quietly offer services like

1) grains by the ounce (or pound)

2) milling grains (or not)

3) separate bags for each grain (or not)

4) ingredient "quick select page" - order a bunch of ingredients on a single page

They charge extra (per oz or lb) for some of those services to cover their expenses - so check pricing carefully before ordering.
 

GFBrewboy

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The new AIH is trying to be better. I ordered May 2 (5 AG kits + incidentals) for the super discount. My Christmas gift card was not recognized but I called to get the credit applied. Shipment arrived May 12 (highly unusual delay for AIH). All the hops (Northern Brewer brand), yeasts, etc were complete and accurate... but missing 2 grain bags!! I emailed and replacement grains were immediately on the way (received in 2 days). Unfortunately, extract grains were sent in the replacement! Another email sent and my AG grains arrived (May 20). So order fulfilled (with some glitches, and apologies received) and now former reward points showing in my account. I won't be ordering for awhile but plan to give them a try again.

I also just discovered the Supply House at Cadillac Straits. My item was more expensive (4.99 vs 4.49 at AIH), but the brewery was a bonus surprise. Nice homebrew shop and friendly staff. Guy said they have rewards system.
 
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I really don't get it complaining about having to measure grain.
It's an endemic that has long infected some portions of home brewing forums Occasional flair-ups are quietly handled using time tested methods. There is no cure, but there is hope.
 
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Bassman2003

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Whatever. I would prefer the LHBS fill a recipe so I can use the recipe on brewday. I don't have a larger scale and it is very convenient to pour the one bag of measured grains into my mill while I am doing many other things at the start of the brewday. They are set up for it, I am not.
 

orono

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They didn’t honor any points for me. Personally I will never order from them again. Same name but not same values. Sorry.
That really sucks if they don't honor your points! I had around $80.00 worth of points. I called the phone number and the person that answered (a man - not sure of his name) sent me an email with a gift card with the value of my points. I understand that they are now owned (partially or wholly) by the same group as Northern Brewer and Midwest Supplies. That's why their shipping address is now Roseville, MN
 

Dancy

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I don’t remember them expiring before. They lost a big customer. I probably spent over $3k over last 3yrs.
I’ve only ordered from them occasionally but I know the points do not last forever. Others on HBT have mentioned they expire. About 3 years ago I was disappointed I lost points because it had been some time since I last ordered. I don't know their exact time frame for that — I haven’t ordered enough from them to care, I guess. NB & Midwest are local for me and I like Atlantic for online.
 
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Towman_21

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I placed an order with AIH on Thursday in the AM, 6/2, and as of Monday morning, 6/6, no email about anything being processed / shipped yet. 5 items total, all 5 said in stock, so nothing on back-order. I just emailed them via their website asking how long things will be. I'm in Michigan, same state they were (are??) in. Didn't know they closed their retail shop in March of this year or I would have offered to drive the 90 minutes to pick up my items directly. Was, and still am, hoping I'd have it by Friday for a friends birthday gift next week. I'm keeping my fingers crossed.

UPDATE: Already received a reply, 15 minutes later. Says "Average ship times have been about 4-5 days from the order date to when they would process and ship."
 
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Nextech

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I placed an order with AIH on Thursday in the AM, 6/2, and as of Monday morning, 6/6, no email about anything being processed / shipped yet. 5 items total, all 5 said in stock, so nothing on back-order. I just emailed them via their website asking how long things will be. I'm in Michigan, same state they were (are??) in. Didn't know they closed their retail shop in March of this year or I would have offered to drive the 90 minutes to pick up my items directly. Was, and still am, hoping I'd have it by Friday for a friends birthday gift next week. I'm keeping my fingers crossed.

UPDATE: Already received a reply, 15 minutes later. Says "Average ship times have been about 4-5 days from the order date to when they would process and ship."
Unfortunately you would have wasted a 3 hour round-trip drive. They are now shipping out of the Northern Brewer warehouse in Minnesota. They're replying to emails now, which is nice. They have been stating 4-5 days processing time, but some people have been waiting weeks. It's all over the place and they seem to be putting the AIH orders last. If you want to guarantee you receive it in a timely manner, I would cancel the order and place a new one with RiteBrew.
 
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My experience with Ritebrew is this:
  • orders have always been packaged for shipment as they indicate
  • shipping (outside of Ritebrew's control) has almost always been as expected (next day or day after). Ritebrew customer support has been helpful in those situations where shipping didn't "go as expected".

Please don't "throw" Ritebrew (or whatever your next home brew store is) "under the bus" for things that they can not control.
 

NadoHawk

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AIH/Austin Homebrew has messed up 4 out of the last 5 orders the last month whether it having items that went out of stock and not informing my until a week after my order shipped and only via refund (not saying which items actually were pulled from my order), sending me the wrong item, or sending me an item with missing parts. I wonder if they are doing inventory reductions and are having difficulties tracking with the new system.

It's so sad with these recent order issues because up until recently, I had only one issue years ago with a kit from Austin (though this was before they got bought out) and they provided me the missing part without issue.
 
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Nextech

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AIH/Austin Homebrew has messed up 4 out of the last 5 orders the last month whether it having items that went out of stock and not informing my until a week after my order shipped and only via refund (not saying which items actually were pulled from my order), sending me the wrong item, or sending me an item with missing parts. I wonder if they are doing inventory reductions and are having difficulties tracking with the new system.

It's so sad with these recent order issues because up until recently, I had only one issue years ago with a kit from Austin (though this was before they got bought out) and they provided me the missing part without issue.
Sadly, this is what I have experienced and also what I am hearing from the majority of others. Take a look at product reviews on the AIH/AHS websites from before the takeover and after. Products that AIH and AHS always took the time to carefully prepare are now coming with missing parts, broken components, expired ingredients, etc. The attention to detail and exceptional customer service has been lost.
 

easttex

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Anybody else feel like Northern Brewer bought AIB/AHS just to take them out of the marketplace? They closed down the locations, consolidated the inventory back to a central warehouse, can't ship anything, and spam customers with endless emails. It's almost like they're trying to destroy these brands on purpose.

I'm super excited a local club member is opening a LHBS nearby. I'd rather spend more money with him than order from the burnt out shell of what AIH/AHS used to be any day.
 

Nextech

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Anybody else feel like Northern Brewer bought AIB/AHS just to take them out of the marketplace? They closed down the locations, consolidated the inventory back to a central warehouse, can't ship anything, and spam customers with endless emails. It's almost like they're trying to destroy these brands on purpose.

I'm super excited a local club member is opening a LHBS nearby. I'd rather spend more money with him than order from the burnt out shell of what AIH/AHS used to be any day.
This is exactly my take on it as well. It's ironic that the ridiculous increase in emails following the takeover is inversely proportional to their ability to adequately fulfill orders. I now receive about 8x the number of emails from AIH/AHS, their orders take about 8x longer to ship, and it takes 8x the effort to rectify problems when you realize they butchered your order. Sounds about right.

Glad you will have a LHBS nearby! I wish I still had that option. Unfortunately, they've been drying up out here 😔
 

mashpaddled

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Anybody else feel like Northern Brewer bought AIB/AHS just to take them out of the marketplace? They closed down the locations, consolidated the inventory back to a central warehouse, can't ship anything, and spam customers with endless emails. It's almost like they're trying to destroy these brands on purpose.

I'm super excited a local club member is opening a LHBS nearby. I'd rather spend more money with him than order from the burnt out shell of what AIH/AHS used to be any day.

Yeah. With homebrewing contracting for years there's not enough sales to go around especially among the big online players. The more they gobble up the fewer competitors in that market and the less they have to compete on price, which has always been the draw to online sales. They certainly did not need another storefront or warehouse in the midwest.
 

Yesfan

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I unsubscribed from getting emails from AiH and AHS for the same reasons mentioned. Since they are Northern's stores now, I just buy straight from Northern if I need something exclusive to them. For the most part, It's usually More Beer or William's.
 

tdiowa

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My experience with Ritebrew is this:
  • orders have always been packaged for shipment as they indicate
  • shipping (outside of Ritebrew's control) has almost always been as expected (next day or day after). Ritebrew customer support has been helpful in those situations where shipping didn't "go as expected".

Please don't "throw" Ritebrew (or whatever your next home brew store is) "under the bus" for things that they can not control.
My go to Homebrew shop
 
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