Women Enjoying Beer: Why, Yes, Thank You. We Are.

by Renee on April 18, 2011

One of the best things to come out of #CBC2011 for me was meeting Ginger Johnson, the founder and facilitator of Women Enjoying Beer. Ginger is an old drinking buddy, er, friend, of author Maureen Ogle, who introduced us the morning of our talk at the conference on Saturday. I had previously noticed Ginger at several sessions before our meeting–because of her sassy haircut, stylish eyewear, and the very cool Women Enjoying Beer jacket she was wearing. Also, she asked great questions of the panelists.

We didn’t get to chat much during the conference, as busy as it was, but I had the chance to look over the WEB website at more length when I returned home to Cleveland, and was both intrigued and impressed. Here’s the mission statement:

Women Enjoying Beer is about Bringing Beer to Life: WEB organizes events (for women, men, and women & men), offers workshops, gives presentations and conducts Focus Groups. Women Enjoying Beer is meant to serve consumers and help the beer community accurately market beer to women, which is better for everyone.

As a woman who enjoys beer, thank you, who is also interested in elevating it in status, evangelizing craft beer, marketing and advancing others’ enjoyment of it–women especially– this really struck a chord with me. Ginger’s awakening to craft beers, as she explains it on her About page, rang eerily familiar to my own thoughts and feelings. She says:

I started falling for the taste of beers several years ago. Having been a self educated wine drinker and liquor drinker, an opportunity to learn about craft beers presented itself to me one weeknight at a favorite local place – where they happened to make their own beers.

And I said to myself, “Self, it’s time to find out what beer is about.” That started the delightfully tasty and fascinating ascent into beer enlightenment. In those following years, it’s been great fun and fascinating learning about different beers, styles, flavors, breweries and the incredible people involved in and around the beer industry.

Most of all, I believe in the beer community and the enormous opportunity the grossly under tapped female market share has to offer. Where they all come from – the people stirring the kettle and everywhere else with the driving unflagging passion and the consumers in search of information to help them grow their appreciation of quality beer. They are some of the most enlightened, engaged, smart, forward thinking, progressive, socially & environmentally responsible, and fun people on the planet.

I felt as though I could have written this myself. I picked up the phone and called her.

While I can’t tell you exactly where our meeting of the minds might go, I am happy to report that Ginger is considering a visit to the CLE, to check out our local brew scene. Perhaps we’ll pull together an event or two during her time in town. Meanwhile, I’m pleased to say I’ll be a guest on her BeerRadio program on KSKQ Ashland, OR on the 27th of this month, at 8 p.m. EST. I hope you’ll tune in to the show. And stay tuned to what Ginger and I may be brewing.

{ 1 comment… read it below or add one }

Melinda Thrasher April 19, 2011 at 1:50 pm

As a woman who enjoys beer and loves local craft breweries… I am very excited to hear about this and possibly meet other women who enjoy beer. Thank you for sharing.

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