It’s a Man’s World
As I walk up to the porch, I often find myself wishing I would have used my predictably clean bathroom before I came. I step over misplaced socks on the stairs and wonder where that smell is coming from. Amongst bags of chips and empty cans, I find familiar faces and welcoming smiles.
Yes, I am in a man’s territory.
The beer community tends to be a bit of a sausage fest, which can mean a variety of things for a beer-loving woman. At times, it is nice to be able to be “one of the guys” and have evening plans that don’t revolve around when The Bachelorette is playing. Other times I grow tired of someone calling out “earmuffs” because they are saying something not “fit for a lady.” To be honest, it’s usually quite fun to watch guys’ expressions change when I ask them the alpha acid level of the hops they used in their last homebrew or debate the benefits and nuisances of Colorado beer laws.
Through the variety of experiences, I often ask myself, “Where are all the women?”
Now, I know I am creating a lot of stereotypes and working from many assumptions. I want to start by saying that I know a lot of women who love beer and women are entering the market at a growing rate. It’s just difficult to ignore the Coors radio commercial I heard recently talking about bringing back the old-style can for “old fashioned men.” Maybe these are assumed to be men because of their lack of taste in choosing Coors. Women have much more refined tastes.
And that’s it. Women do love flavor. They love taste. They enjoy drinking something that is delicious. But why aren’t they in the taprooms or at the beer dinners?
Beer has not been marketed to women. Our society often portrays men at a sports bar with a beer and women in a swanky bar with flattering lighting and a cosmopolitan. Is it possible to be a lady with a beer in hand?
I believe that many women have not jumped into the beer scene because they are not informed on how complex, flavorful and delicious beer can be. I don’t blame anyone for thinking they don’t like beer when all they’ve had is a light macrobrew. Sacrificing calories for flavor is a decision I’ve made and never turned back. Beer can be refined and sophisticated when you delve into proper glassware and food pairings. Retain your femininity and crack open a can. In the world of beer, you can have it all.
Or maybe another reason I find myself surrounded by well-humored, beer-loving gentlemen is that I don’t invite my girlfriends. Maybe I kind of like being the token female every now and then. My pride might be a little hurt if I found I wasn’t as unique in my passion for beer as I thought.
But that’s not excuse. Porches are porches because they are open and have no doors. All are welcome to this porch. Just bring a six-pack to share … and maybe a little hand sanitizer.
To read more from Laura Vande Zande check out her blog.