All good stories start with a beer (alright I will be honest – a few beers) and so one cosy winter night, beer in hand, I was scrolling through my Facebook news feed and came across the ‘Brewed with Love’ Campaign, this campaign struck me as unfair. Besides the fact that carrying a child is a lot harder than sipping on your favourite brew, it was the fact that men have this authentic point of reference when it comes to enjoying beer while advertising portrays women half naked, sultrily gazing at the camera in some awkward pose. You only need do a quick google search to find the extent that women are objectified when it comes to advertising beer.
So initially my light bulb moment was to create some kind of meme which authentically portrays women in beer. But the more I thought about it, the more I realised that actually there is much more that can be done. The South African beer industry already has some strong women who are playing on equal terms to the men and I wanted to engage them in this campaign to get their views and experiences. And so the #shelovesbeer campaign was born. This campaign will launch on the 9th August 2016 in line with National Women’s Day, to recognise the women who are leading the Beer Revolution and to inspire many more to join us!
What started with a Facebook Group (called #shelovesbeer) of 10 women has now grown to 89 vivacious, smart, beer loving ladies with the aim to create dialogue that celebrates women in beer and to give them a way to engage with beer in a positive and uplifting way. It is also aimed at providing the opportunity to connect, share, learn, inspire and educate.
We really do have some amazing women to celebrate. Apiwe Nxusani-Mawela a lady of many firsts including the first black South African person to be certified as a beer judge through the Beer Judging Certification Programme (BJCP) and the first black female shareholder in a microbrewery in South Africa.
Frieda Dehrmann, Consumer Science and Sensory Manager at SABMiller, Frieda was awarded SABMiller’s Global Taster of the Year 2012 an event that drew 1600 participants from six international regions served by SABMiller.
Meghan McCulloch (Jack Black Brewing Company) and Phillipa Wood (Darling Brew) both pioneers of craft beer in South Africa, starting their brands with their hubbys back in 2007, both beautiful breweries and tasting rooms have opened their doors in the last 12 months.
And of course Lucy Corne craft beer blogger, author, BJCP judge and president of the SouthYeasters Homebrew Club in the Western Cape.
At first we exchanged stories about the challenges we had faced as women who enjoy a brew and are in the beer industry and it was clear that our experiences were all very similar: being offered beer alternatives or fruit beers instead of being asked our preferences; not being taken seriously in our opinions, tastes and advice or people suggesting that you “tart up” your female servers to punt more beers to Joe public. Don’t get me wrong, we are all supported by our male industry counterparts but the reality is that most people already underestimate a woman’s knowledge and understanding before we even open our mouths.
With that part neatly tucked out of the way, we couldn’t have this group turn into a moan fest. We started talking about strategies to deal with this….the main theme that came out was just keep on doing what you are doing gals, surprise them with your equal (if not better 😉 ) skills, expertise, attitude and discerning taste in beer!
The group has now collaborated on the #shelovesbeer campaign, which will showcase the smart and sassy beer lovers across South Africa, with the hope that we can create a platform to connect with more beer souls to explore their passion.
So what’s actually happening on Women’s Day? Well we have already had two brew days. In Cape Town, Lucy Corne and BeerLab’s Lynnae Endersby brewed the dark and hoppy ‘Orange is the New Black IPA’ while in Johannesburg, Amber x Brown Ale ‘African Queen on Vic Secret’ was brewed by Apiwe Nxusani-Mawela & Michelle Erasmus. The ladies’ brews will be available at Beerhouse on Long (Orange is the New Black) and Beerhouse Fourways (African Queen on Vic Secret) on the 9th August.
We have also had two photo shoots with the girls from the #shelovesbeer group for the campaign and used it as an opportunity for an informal networking session to have a laugh and talk about beer. I would like to extend a special thanks to the girls on the ground making things happen (have look at Janine & Precious’ Blog)!
On the 9th August we will go live with a social media campaign via Beerhouse social media using the #shelovesbeer. SABMiller are running a parallel campaign to celebrate their wonderful women in beer and Beerhouse will have an in store promotion with both beers brewed specifically for the day being on tap for free! So come along to have a taste and meet some of the girls!
#shelovesbeer doesn’t end on National Women’s Day, this is a community for women to talk about something they love, exchange ideas, create meetups and share skills. There is a wonderful world of beer waiting for you!
Let’s raise a glass to the women who bring you your beer! Cheers to us 🙂
How to get more involved in the beer industry:
Beginners/Bit of Fun:
- Beer School at Beerhouse: September Dates TBC
- #CraftGeekingAtTwoOkes – Brewery Tour: 27th August 2016
- BeerLab’s Beer School: Cape Town Every second Saturday of the month
- Meet the Brewer ‘Grass Roots Edition’: Beerhouse on Long 24th August 2016 & Beerhouse Fourways 31st August 2016
- Brewcraft’s Saturday Sessions: Next one is 10th September 2016
- Know you Beer: Cape Town 4th October – November 8th 2016
- Siebel Sensory Analysis Course: 17th September Cape Town and 22nd October Durban
- Brewing Beyond the Basics: Cape Town 28th—30th October 2016
- Beer Boot Camp: Johannesburg 8th July 2017 and Cape Town 15th July 2017
- The Bierfest: Johannesburg 2nd – 4th September, Durban 30th September – 1st October & Cape Town 4th – 6th November
- Thousand Sensations Craft Beer & Food Festival: George 16th & 17th September 2016
- Rosetta Craft Beer Festival: KZN 24th September 2016
- SouthYeasters Spring Festival: Stellenbosh 26th September 2016
- Pecanwood Oktoberfest: KZN 29th October 2016
- Cape Town Festival of Beer: 25th November 2016
- Clarens Festival of Beer: 24th February 2016
Brewery Tasting Rooms/Brew Pubs
- SAB World of Beer
- Cape Brewing Company
- Darling Brewery
- Jack Black Brewing Company
- Aegir Project – Independent Brewery
- Copperlake Brewing Company
- RIOT Beer
The Beer Whisperer is back with the next in his educational Slideshare presentations (and don’t they just look spiffy as well?!). If you, like me, prefer a sweeter, more fruity lightness to your beer, then the spectacular range of wheat beers available at Beerhouse might just be for you. Check out the ins and outs of this refreshing style right here…
Murray Slater knows beer. And he wants you to know beer, too. In this, the first of a series of Slideshare presentations designed to educate and inform, Beerhouse’s very own Beer Whisperer and resident beer expert explains the in’s and out’s of Belgian-style beer.
We have now been open for 3 months and our staff have really been working hard. They have applied themselves to the massive task of operating a busy venue with Africa’s biggest variety of beer under one roof. They have taken to the task with gusto and are continually learning about the worlds greatest beverage. Last Monday we took them on a Brewery and Cidery tour for more beer and cider education and also to show them our appreciation for all their efforts getting Beerhouse on Long to where it is today.
Team Beerhouse jumped on a bus and headed for Stellenbosch. First stop Stellenbrau Brewery the home of Craven Lager and Alumni Ale. We were greeted with much excitement by Jaco and Francios who have been working really hard supplying us with the beer. A very insightful brewery tour was followed by lunch and then a tasting in there built for purpose tap room. They only have two products at the moment with others in the pipe line. They are steadfast in there mantra to deliver consistent flavoursome beer. The brewery was full of activity when we visited which is not always the case when you visit a brewery as they usually done by midday. He managed to witness them carbonating the beer and then filtering the yeast.
The guys at Stellenbrau provided us with lunch and were fantastic hosts. A better start to our adventure in Beerland could not be asked for. Back on the bus and over the mountains to Grabouw to the land of apples and pears.
William Everson founder of Everson’s Cider was awaiting our arrival and led our bus to where his five different apples get crushed. It was quite a site seeing all those apples rumbling along the escalator on there way to been crushed into delicious apple juice. The team got to taste the apple juice straight from the press. With out a doubt the best apple juice ever tasted. Majority of the staff were stunned to see that the juice was in fact green and cloudy rather than amber. It seems to be testament to our up brining with apple juice been associated with a amber concentrate rather than fresh cloudy goodness.
William is really passionate about his family business. An accomplished wine maker who is versed in the magic of yeast. He ferments his cider in a cold room in Grabouw right next to where the apples are pressed. He has two great products Apple and Pear ciders. His Pear cider will soon be on our Summer menu on tap. Drinking this stuff on our sunny balcony is going to be a treat.
William has been working on a few limited addition products which he might bring into his core range. We had the privilege of tasting his single varietal cider fermented with champagne yeast. Pink lady cider with the evanescence of a champagne. Our favourite was his brandy casked aged cider. A complex cider like no other on our shores. William was all to happy to load us up with cider for our next journey down the other side of the mountain to Botriver.
Our next stop was eagerly anticipated as their beer very seldom makes its way to Cape Town. Mark and Analize are a husband and wife team that are making some of the best beers in SA. They produce very small batch brews and usually are found of Belgian styles. We were treated to a tasting of four of there beers. The wit, saison, IPA and blonde were all very accomplished and have quickly become favourites of the team. The brewery is set on a beautiful small holding overlooking the valley. Surely one of the best views to drink beer right next to a brewery. They dont often deliver to Cape Town so we took full advantage of our 38 seater bus and stock up for our return to Cape Town. Well done team! Great day in Beerland many more to come. Stay Thirsty Stay Curious!
After a very busy opening two months Team Beerhouse had a well deserved excursion to one of our favourite South African Craft Breweries. Lakeside started off as a garage home brewing affair in the titled peninsula suburb. After a brief stint at Honingklip brewery in Bot River they have relocated recently to Kommetjie. Morne is a classic example of home-brewer turned micro-brewer. His beers are made with love and care and there quality is reflective of the hard work that goes into making a craft beer.
Team Beerhouse were given insights into the brewing process from milling, mash tun, kettle, fermenter, bright tank to punters pint. Morne was all too happy to show us around his pride
and joy and we cant recommend a visit enough. Look out for his American Pale Ale and Heffeweizen this summer! Fanent our star waiter got a closer look!