Women in the Beer Industry:Part One

Last night I went to the French Culinary Institute, heard a panel discussion about women in the beer industry, and sampled beer, bread and cheese. All of the beers related in some way to the speakers. There were beers from Stoudt’s, Ommegang and Dogfish Head.

I had a Stoudt’s Pils which was very refreshing and had a good  taste and color, unlike the Heineken I had a few days ago. My husband had a Stoudt’s Scarlet Lady ESB which he liked very much. We both tried the Dogfish Head Punkin which, for me, was surprisingly good, not too sweet and just a hint of pumpkin taste.  My favorite was the Ommegang Abbey Ale which was delicious, a beautiful ruby brown color, and very smooth. It is 7% abv. It would go well at any meal at which you would consider serving wine.

Two nights ago we went to the Blind Tiger Ale House which is a very well-known beer bar with an overwhelmingly selection of both draft and bottled beers. It reminded me of a smaller Moan and Dove (my local bar) with more beers, food but no peanuts. We had Blue Point Cask IPA which I did not like. It was very still and tasted like a stout. I liked the Cigar City Maduro Oatmeal Brown Ale though.

The women on the panel represented various aspects of the brewing industry, from production to retail. Maggie Fuller, founder of Beer  Ethos moderated the discussion. Maggie has a degree in brewing science from UCDavis and founded Beer Ethos to promote” the appreciation and enjoyment of beer through drinking and discourse.”* She plans on opening a beer store in the near future.

The women on the panel were: Carol Stoudt, President and Brewmaster, Stoudt’s Brewery. Carol was the first American woman to “oversee the design and development of a craft brewery from start to finish.”

Susan Greene, General Sales Manager Global Brewers Guild,”which represents a dozen domestic and imported beers throughout the East Coast.” (I couldn’t find a website)

Jennifer Schwertman, a bartender at the Blind Tiger.

Sarah Lescrauwart Beach, Ommegang Brewery, Market Manager. Duvel Moortgat, a publicly owned and traded Belgium company that brews Duvel, owns Ommegang.

Debbie Boening, Oak Beverages, President and Chief Executive Officer. Oak Beverage is  a “leading New York Metropolitan are beer wholesale distributor and part of the 107 -year old, fourth generation Boeing beer distribution group.” She is the only woman.

Tomorrow: Part Two: What they said.

* All the text in quotes is from the handout at the talk.

Quick Note

We had a full day, running along the river, a country fair with a petting zoo at Riverside Park and a  New York Liberty game. We wound up having a late dinner. One great thing about New York is how many places are open all night. The hamburgers were great but the beer choices were not. I settled on a Heineken on tap which I have decided is no better than Bud, just more expensive and slightly alcoholic.

Urban Experiences

My husband and I wanted to spend this time in New York to have a more urban experience. Today had several elements that are common to urban life.

1. Frustration: We had a tremendous amount of trouble getting the metrocard  machine to accept either of our debit cards. In the end we had to use a credit card.  The man at what used to be called the token both and I guess now is the metrocard booth understandably only takes cash.

2. Spectacle: We were going to a gallery opening (more on that later)  and happened upon the Labor Day Parade on Fifth Avenue. It was really long and very interesting. One of the pictures is of  a group  holding a banner, “Non-Traditional; Employment for Women,” which I thought was very cool. The other picture is of the Teamsters who had a really big contingent.* Union membership has really declined since the Reagan years and I think a strong labor movement could help with many of our problems.  More viable labor organizations would also help President Obama in his reform efforts on health care and other matters.

Women Workers
Women Workers

3. Class: We went to an opening at the Greenberg Van Doren Gallery. The exhibit was Tim Davis’s collection of photographs, The New Antiquity. Tim’s stepdad works at Hampshire.  Many of the galleries on 57th  Street are not at street level. That means you have to know both the gallery and the exhibit exist.

After Tim’s show we went to the PaceWildstein gallery. This gallery is also not on street level, but once you are in the building there are four different floors of exhibits. Each of the galleries has a  slightly different name but all are Pace.

PaceWildenstein had Sol LeWitt: Forms Derived from a Cube. Some of the paintings were  wall drawings (on the wall) and were for sale. I asked the receptionists  about how one would actually purchase a wall drawing. She explained that Sol LeWitt was dead (I thought that was kind of funny) and that the purchaser gets a certificate and then a draftsman comes to your house, prepares the wall, and paints the drawing. Sol LeWitt did in 2007 so the paintings in PaceWildenstein exhibit were done in the above methods.

This all seems a bit strange. I maybe could see paying $12,00 if the artist came to my house and painted it on the walls but a draftsman?

Another one of the Pace galleries was Pace Primitive. It was African masks, Filipino religious items, and small statues. Some were from the 19th and early twentieth centuries. I have problems with the use of the word “primitive” and I wonder about the methods used to obtain the art.

*In the nineteenth and early twentieth century  the Teamsters Union fought many jurisdictional battles with the United Brewery Workers.

A Day in New York City

Yesterday I had to go to New York City for the day. After my appointment I had about four hours to kill before my train left. First I went to the Mount Vernon Hotel Museum which until 2000 was the Abigail Adams Smith House. I had chosen to go there because I thought it was the headquarters of the Colonial Dames of America. colonial-barbie

The CDA does manage the Museum but their offices and presumably archives are in the building next door. This was built in 1977 to look old. Oddly enough, this building looks worse than the museum, which was built in 1799 as a carriage house for the planned mansion of Abigail Adams Smith, John Adams daughter, and her husband. The museum does not have any artifacts pertaining to the Smiths which may be one reason they changed their mission.In 1826 Joseph Hart purchased the carriage house and turned it into a day resort, equivalent to a spa today.  Hart operated this business for seven years until 1833.

The museum only has a few things that are actually from the hotel. The rest of the artifacts are “of the period.”  This is often the case with small museums. No one was in at the CDA so I couldn’t talk to them.

After the 30 minute tour of the museum I ate lunch and then I went to Bloomingdales. I haven’t been in Bloomies in a very long time. The display windows  are full of Barbie doll mannequins because Barbie is 50 and Bloomingdales is celebrating her birthday. According to the New York Times the store is “leaning on Barbie to salvage its quarterly bottom line.”

On the third floor there must have been over one hundred Barbies from different years dressed as different careers including doctor and stewardess. There were also Barbies as different celebrity figures. Apparently the first one of these was Twiggy in the 70s but there is also one of Beyonce. Most of the dolls are from the 90s. The 1959 Barbie is a replica.I confess I still have my Barbie which dates from that time.

On the second floor the store is selling Barbie purses and replica dolls. There is also a display of life size mannequins in designer clothes. Although I didn’t plan on it, the day turned out to have a theme, Both the  Colonial Dames and Barbie represent American womanhood and ideals of femininity. Now I just have to figure out how they are connected.

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