Over the course of February, we got the chance to interview brewers from six of our favorite Boston-area craft breweries. Each of them weighed in on more than a dozen questions for our first ever brewer panel.
In this post--the second in a five-part series--you’ll hear from brewers at Jack's Abby Brewing, Clown Shoes, Pretty Things Beer & Ale Project, Nightshift Brewing, Idle Hands Craft Ales, Enlightenment Ales, and Aeronaut Brewing Co. on women's rising interest in craft beer and homebrewing and why beards are so prevalent in the industry.
In case you missed the first post on changing consumer tastes and preferences and the creative process, you can read it here.
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How have you seen the role of women in craft beer and homebrewing evolve in recent years? And what do you think the future will be like for them?
Even in the few years that Jack's Abby has been open, we've seen a staggering change in the mix of applicants that apply for jobs at the brewery. It's reassuring how many women are interested in positions at our brewery.
There seems to be more women getting into the hobby, and more women willing to try and enjoy craft beer. In November Aeronaut did a brew day with the Boston Area Beer Enthusiasts Society (BABES) and had 20+ attendees. It was a great way to introduce women to the brewing process and share a mutual love and curiosity for beer. I've had the pleasure of working with several very talented and enthusiastic female brewers, and as women start to see brewing or working in other segments of the beer industry as an interesting career, we'll see a closing of the gender gap.
There seems to be more women. That's true. I like that a lot. Particularly on the beer-drinking side. Couples are able enjoy beer together and are equally into it. That is the biggest change in beer as a whole, never mind craft beer.
Woman love craft beer and oftentimes our taproom seems to have more woman than men! We only have one woman brewer at the moment, but as more women continue to fall in love with craft beer, the male-dominated industry will quickly shift.
I was taught my way around a brew house by Megan Parisi, one of the finest brewers I've had the good fortune to work with. From the moment I entered into the beer industry there's always been a good amount of female brewers, bar managers, and beer enthusiasts. I hope, and imagine, their representation will continue to grow.
I hope to continue to see more women in roles of responsibility and authority in craft beer. Intelligence and creativity know no gender. I am hopeful that people in the industry realize this and continue to welcome women into top roles as owners, brewers, and other positions of authority. The challenge is to breakdown biases among consumers. I hope to never again have to see beer drinkers at a festival assume that the guys in the booth know more than women in the booth. I’ve seen it happen and really enjoy pointing out the idiocy of that way of thinking, especially because one of our female Shoe Crew members was an assistant brewer.
What’s up with so many brewers growing long beards?
Why not. In our brewery, it's really not a statement or some cultural ideal. Not sure how many men would bother shaving if there was no stigma against it in their work. It's a pain and time consuming and we work hard enough already.
It seems like there are a fair number of breweries nowadays putting out beers which resemble milkshakes, so these craft beer aficionados appear to have taken it upon themselves to use their beards as a means of secondary filtration.
It's always been a part of craft brewing. Beer drinkers like their brewers to be beardy and tubby. Technically, though, if you sport a large beard in a brewery you're meant to be wearing a snood. That's probably why I've been relatively beard-free.
Brewers care more about the beer they lovingly create, nurture, and then release into the wild than their physical appearance. We don't have time to spare for shaving.
I have no idea. Warmth? I can't grow one so I try to compensate with the long hair.
Not sure. I can only manage a goatee and mustache.
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