Our Story

Nathan-JonThe story of The Casual Pint begins with Jon Robinette in 1976. That was the year Jon took up the grocery business, landing a job with Harris Teeter Neighborhood Food & Pharmacy in Mountain City, Tenn. He began with the basics—stocking the shelves, working the cash register and keeping the place cleaned up. Soon, though, he began moving up the career chain, from co-manager, to store manager, to area supervisor, to area specialist.

Jon’s experience with Harris Teeter taught him what separates the country’s best grocers from their mediocre competitors—things like a wide selection of fresh, high-quality produce, meats, and other perishables. A world-class store is always clean, well-lighted, and easy to get around in. It is well staffed with helpful and friendly professionals who ensure that questions are answered and checkouts are quick. And it has a generous selection of prepared products to make a shopper’s life just a little bit easier.

In other words, when you go into the country’s best grocery stores, you find high-quality products without having to search, you get out quickly, and you’re happy with the experience. Jon made sure to apply these lessons in 1997 when he became manager of Harris Teeter’s Quality Assurance Department in Greensboro, N.C. As he moved forward, Jon worked briefly as area sales manager for Giant grocery stores in Quincy, Mass., and for Food City as an area manager.

During this time, Jon’s son Nathan also decided to get into the grocery business, starting with Harris Teeter as an assistant store manager and co-manager in Raleigh, N.C., in 2004. He later worked for Earth Fare in Raleigh and in Johnson City, Tenn., and eventually took up with KeHE Distributors. There he sold products to Food City, such as specialty and gourmet cheese, organic groceries, other specialty groceries, and frozen dairy items.

He was doing pretty well for himself, but it wasn’t enough. Nathan is an entrepreneur at heart; he needed to be his own boss. Along the way he had developed a passion for craft beers, those extraordinary artisanal concoctions created by small breweries around the region and the country.

DSC01896Craft brewers have the same obsession for uncompromising quality that Nathan and Jon developed in the grocery business. They believe beer should be created by impassioned brewmasters, not by accountants and marketers. For his part, Nathan dreamed of providing a gathering place that honors their vision and rewards their effort. Enter The Casual Pint.

With Nathan providing the dream, Jon providing the capital, and both providing business expertise, they opened their first location in Knoxville’s Bearden neighborhood. That was 2011. The next year they opened a second location, this one on Union Avenue in downtown Knoxville.

Now their dream of owning a Casual Pint can become yours. In 2012, the father and son team contracted with 1st Choice Franchise Concepts to develop a franchise system for The Casual Pint. Their first Casual Pint franchise opened in April of 2014 and have been growing consistently since.

If you are interested in learning more about becoming a Casual Pint franchise owner, then please fill out the form at www.casualpintfranchise.com for more information. If you build it, they will drink.