Opinion: Craft Beer and Female Fans

An article was brought to my attention by a friend “How Craft Beer Fails its Female Fan Base” and I thought I’d give my two cents on the topic based on the Stereotypes that are brought up in the article:


I do know women who want a sweet beer, or a fruity beer, or a light beer and because I know them pretty well, know it’s because they want to get into craft beer and are nervous because they’re used to wine and cocktails and are overwhelmed by options. To be perfectly honest, it was a fruity, sweet beer that got me into craft beer in the first place. I’m happy to recommend these when asked but am also very, very open with other stuff I like that may not fit into these categories that they may also like.

I’ve since embraced other flavors and do like the occasional refreshing fruit beer but I don’t drink them exclusively. I like porters, stouts, sours, gose-style and (gasp) IPA beers. I don’t dig most Bourbon-Aged beers though but that’s just a general distaste for bourbon in general.

Just like with everything else where women are not included or considered because there is a perception, which may or may not be based in fact or actual evidence, I’d say presume the person who’s asking you knows what they’re talking about and are actually very interested in your opinion.

Good rule of thumb: If a woman asks for your opinion, your next question should be “Sure, what do you normally like to drink?” And go from there.


My husband likes hard liquor and IPAs. I assure you that it’s more me dragging him into Craft Beer than the other way around.

And I’ve probably dragged other friends down the rabbit hole too. I’m not ashamed.


Women can be whatever they want to be. I wanted to be a video game writer, so I did it. I then wanted to be a craft beer reviewer, did that too. And I’m in good company in the craft beer world.


I’ve not experienced this when I’m out and I’m typically the person who’s making recommendations on beer before someone actually goes up to order.

In the times where I have inquired about a specific beer or asked for a recommendation, the men behind the bar have been very polite and very informative. Anything less is just poor customer service and unnecessary condescension.

Gentlemen in craft beer are really excited to talk to someone who also loves craft beer regardless of gender. If they feel it’s necessary to mansplain they’re probably just d*cks in general.

Again, to repeat what I said before: If a woman asks for your opinion, your next question should be “Sure, what do you normally like to drink?” And go from there.

In Conclusion:

Do I feel like marketing that is man-centric is annoying and sometimes inappropriate? Yep. It’s not isolated to craft beer. Yes, it’s a problem that plagues the craft beer community. It’s also still a huge problem in gaming (see also the backlash from Xbox’s GDC party and subsequent apology) and in marketing in general.

Am I concerned that beers like Clown Shoes’ Trampstamp use suggestive imaging that might be misinterpreted? Not really. If you understand the tongue-in-cheek nature of most craft breweries, it’s not as bothersome. I have bigger bones to pick with other industries’ portrayals of women.

The apathy is probably pretty heavy with me since I’ve come across much, much worse but I’d *love* for Craft Beer to lead the charge and be a shining example of how we can include women in marketing without reducing it to gimmicks or pink labels.

The 5 Beers I Will Never Stop Loving (Or Drinking)

Once upon a time I was able to keep up with all of the new craft beers being released. Those days are long gone now – partly because I no longer earn my living talking about beer online and partly because there are just too many new beers coming out to make that a feasible goal.

I am a very big fan of trying new things, so I don’t mind. In fact, I very much appreciate having the option to order something I’ve never had before almost every time I go out.

At the same time, having so many options, in so many places, so regularly, has made me realize which of my old standbys really have staying power. The list of beers that I keep coming back to time after time, year after year, is relatively short but each beer on it has passed the tests of time and fierce competition with flying colors. While it’s weird to think of the idea of “classic craft beers” – I suspect that it may someday be a thing. In the meantime, I will share my list of abiding favorites. Here they are:


5. Victory Prima Pils
Out of the five beers on this list, Prima Pils is the one I seek out least often – but whenever it’s there, I’m always glad to see it. A classic thirst-quencher easy-drinker, it was my first favorite pilsner and that will never change.


4. Stone Arrogant Bastard Ale
You’d think that a beer originally released in 1997 might have lost its edginess by now but that’s certainly not the case. There’s fruit, pine, bitterness, bite – and best of all, balance. It’s the beer that taught me what a sipping beer is and it’ll always have a place in my heart – as well as my fridge.


3. Unibroue La Fin Du Monde
This beer makes you wonder if the Canadians couldn’t teach the Belgians a thing or two about brewing. The first time I had it was in Montreal, upon the recommendation of a friend (thanks again, Deron) and I haven’t stopped loving it since. I try to pay it forward by recommending it to anyone just getting into beer and I still buy it regularly for myself. I consider the fact that it is now available at Wegmans a blessing, as it is my all-time favorite blend of yeasty, fruity, spicy, and boozy.


2. Founders Porter

A classic example of the style, this beer is everything you could want in a porter and it’s not at all pretentious about it. Dark, velvety, and dominated by the chocolate and caramel malt flavors, this is the beer that made me fall in love with porters and I will always be grateful.


1. Great Lakes Christmas Ale

This post was actually inspired by Great Lakes Christmas Ale, which was released today. At this point, it’s a holiday season tradition for me – and one of my favorites at that. It’s spiced, it’s sweet, and it’s oh so nice. Maybe the fact that I can’t have it all year round makes me appreciate it even more when I can? Either way, I can’t wait to get my hands on some ASAP.

This post was submitted by the lovely Elizabeth Chatterton. Make sure you follow her other fascinating articles on her blog, Words of Chatter.