Women are astonishingly underrepresented in brewing. While the percentage of women employed in the beer industry overall is hard to quantify, a 2021 survey done by the Brewers Association put the number of breweries owned solely by women below 3%.
But locally, there’s at least one encouraging sign of progress. A full slate of events marking Women’s Month in March, put together by eight women who work in beer, is growing exponentially.
In March 2022, women representing five (mostly local) breweries banded together to create a handful of events to benefit Sojourner Truth House. This year the number of participating breweries has nearly double to nine, and there are more than two dozen beer-related events scheduled for March as part of the initiative. Proceeds benefit the Sojourner Family Peace Center.
“It’s incredibly encouraging to nearly double the participation this year,” said Jen Durkin, a market manager for Surly Brewing. “I think it goes to show the strength of women in the beer industry. What started as a simple idea to work and network together as friends has grown into this amazing and collaborative effort of women who are seriously the coolest and most brilliant people I’ve been able to work with.”
VOTE FOR MILWAUKEE’S BEST BEER!
What’s Brew City’s best? We’ve picked 16 of our favorite Milwaukee craft beers for a March Madness-style tournament, but it’s up to you to pick the winner! Will it be bright and hoppy? Dark and malty? A zippy lager? Every one is worthy of the title; who will claim the sudsy crown?
Added Heidi Dalibor, the CEO of New Barons Brewing Co-op: “Going to the different events last year was a great time and it was apparent that some buzz was starting to form. So to be a part of building on the project this year and having a bigger group of breweries all represented by women is exciting.”
The organizers of the events list include Durkin and Dalibor, as well as Maggie Skinner (Revolution Brewing), Holly Ditchcreek (Eagle Park Brewing), Juliana Pierandozzi (3 Sheeps Brewing), Breanne Berger (Great Lakes Brewing), Kylen Eberlein (Indeed Brewing) and Clare Twietmeyer (New Belgium Brewing/Bell’s Brewery).
The festivities include beer dinners, bingo and trivia nights, a bottle exchange and more. One highlight is the Womxn’s Month Beer Fest, happening on Sunday, March 26 at Elwood’s Liquor & Tap (1111 N. Water St.). From 1 to 4 p.m. there will be 15 breweries providing beer samples, a food truck, a maker’s market and even tattoo artists. The cost is just a $5 donation.
“It speak volumes that there are more women representatives in the industry and that we can all come together for a great cause,” said Pierandozzi. “The growth in our partnerships is equally as staggering, I don’t think any of us last year thought the events would grow to the point it has. The outreach and interest in participation from all of these businesses is overwhelming and so greatly appreciated to bring awareness to and generate donations for Sojourner Family Peace Center.”
The following places are hosting events during Women’s Month. Check each location for details.
- March 2: Izzy Hops Swig & Nosh (2311 N. Murray Ave.) and Red Lion Pub (1850 N. Water St.)
- March 5: Ray’s Growler Gallery (8930 W. North Ave.)
- March 8: Station 6 (6800 W. Becher St.)
- March 9: Milwaukee Burger Company (6421 S. 27th St.) and Palomino Bar (2491 S. Superior St.)
- March 12: Saint Bibiana (1327 E. Brady St.) and Sugar Maple (441 E. Lincoln Ave.)
- March 15: Comet Cafe (1947 N. Farwell Ave.) and Crafty Cow Milwaukee (2675 S. Kinnickinnic Ave.)
- March 16: Von Trier (2235 N. Farwell Ave.)
- March 21: Wisconsin On Tap (N88 W16521 Main St., Menomonee Falls)
- March 22: Ferch’s Crafthouse Grille (418 N. Mayfair Rd.) and Inventors Brewpub (435 N. Lake St., Port Washington)
- March 23: New Barons Brewing Cooperative (2018 S. 1st St.)
- March 26: Elwood’s Liquor & Tap (1111 N. Water St.)
- March 27: The Brass Tap (7808 W. Layton Ave.)
- March 28: Bad Moon Saloon (4035 S. Clement Ave.)
- March 29: Three Lion’s Pub (4515 N. Oakland Ave.) and Reunion Restaurant (6610 W. Greenfield Ave.)
- March 30: Crafty Cow Milwaukee
- March 31: Three Cellars (N72 W13400 Lund Ln., Menomonee Falls)
Events/Donations All Month:
- The Buzz Cafe (5621 6th Ave., Kenosha)
- Cleveland Pub (14000 Cleveland Ave., New Berlin)
- Draft & Vessel Tosa (7479 Harwood Ave.)
- Erv’s Mug (130 W. Ryan Rd., Oak Creek)
- The Stillery Richfield (W204 N14025 Fond Du Lac Ave.)
- The Stillery Grafton (1304 12th Ave.)
- Stilt House Gastro Bar (W62 N630 Washington Ave., Cedarburg)
- The Tap Room (1301 Milwaukee Ave., South Milwaukee)