Philadelphia’s Women Brewers Talk About Breaking Into the Boy’s Club

by Kathryn Hensch


The world of brews can be pretty exclusive. Thankfully, a few ladies (including former BUST intern and founder of the Lady Birds Beer Club, Gina Vasoli) are mixing up Philadelphia’s beer scene, a tight-knit community of small brewers. Whether it’s brewing, selling, or creating women-only beer clubs, they all have one thing in common: They’re making the business of that golden stuff on tap fair for all.

The Philly Voice spoke to six of the women about the challenges they face as being the minority of the industry. “When I first opened up, I definitely felt a lot of resistance from my fellow brewers – but I’m not sure if it was because of my gender or my age or just new competition,” said Jamie Queli, owner of Forgotten Boardwalk Brewery.

Nancy Rigberg, who owns the brewing supplier Home Sweet Homebrew, has an idea on how to get more ladies into the field: “Get girls interested in the sciences and you’ll see more women in the brewery.”

And for Christina Burris, being a female co-owner often means presumptions that she and her partner are intimately involved—assumptions that are entirely untrue. “I find it belittling that people don’t believe I have my own dreams,” she told the Phi. “…[But] it doesn’t stop what I can do in the field. I’m really good at what I do.”

Read the full story here. Want to know more about brewin’ babes? Our August/September issue will feature some women-owned craft breweries. Let’s raise a glass to that!


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Founded in 1993, BUST is the inclusive feminist lifestyle trailblazer offering a unique mix of humor, female-focused entertainment, uncensored personal stories, and candid reporting that tells the truth about women’s lives.

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