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‘Crafty’ Women Invited to Lake Anne Brew House to Learn About Beer

by Dave Emke — January 13, 2017 at 4:00 pm 17 Comments

She's Crafty beer night via Tracy Bailey Converse/Facebook

Melissa Romano, the co-owner of Lake Anne Brew House, said she has had interesting experiences with women coming into the pub.

They didn’t want beer, and she wanted to change that.

“Guys would come in with their girlfriends on their arm, and the girlfriends wanted wine,” she said. “When we were able to actually bring them into the bar and let them taste our local, hand-crafted beers, we were typically able to find a beer they liked as much as the wine that they claimed was the only thing they were going to drink.”

Romano owns the brewery along with her husband, Jason. She has made educating women about beer her mission, and part of that goal is the implementation of women’s-only nights at the pub, dubbed “She’s Crafty” nights. The first one took place in December, and the next is scheduled for Sunday night.

“I’ve always been very interested in making sure women are comfortable around craft beer,” she said. “It’s kind of a male-dominated field, and we want to make sure the women get their time to shine in the brewery, to ask questions and learn.”

Lake Anne Brew House, which opened in April, also has a female assistant brewer, Tracy Converse. Romano said with so much female influence on the beer, it is important to the brewery to keep women engaged in their process.

“We wanted to make sure that we made special time for women,” Romano said.

Romano said the women who frequent Lake Anne Brew House have organized as an affiliate of Barley’s Angels, an international organization dedicated to helping women explore and appreciate craft beer.

“Girls can really enjoy this experience too,” she said.

Romano said the first “She’s Crafty” event was very successful and she is hopeful this weekend’s will be as well.

“We just want to give women a little bit of a foothold, so they can walk in [to a brewery] and say, ‘This is what I like,'” she said. “We give them a knowledge base to work from, as it relates to beer.”

This weekend’s event will include pairings of three specialty beers with different plates of food, Romano said.

“We’re going to talk about beer and food pairings and educate the women about not only the styles of beers they’re drinking, but why they taste good with a particular style of food,” she said.

The brew house plans to continue hosting the events monthly, Romano said.

Sunday’s event is scheduled for 6:30 to 8:30 p.m. at the pub, located at 11424 Washington Plaza West in Lake Anne Plaza. There is no cost, other than the accrued tab. Romano said the event is “come as you are,” with no RSVP required.

  • Mike M

    Crafty marketing scheme. Pull on a new market. This event might just attract men too.

    • Melissa Berkemeier Romano

      Sorry Mike, no boys allowed.

      • Mike M

        Thanks for the reminder, Melissa. Gender discrimination?

        For a whole slew of reasons, I will not even try to be there. Meet you somewhere else! 😉

        I should also mention as someone who is not a brown ale fan, this place has a really great brown ale. I hope it’s on tap.

      • Mike M (Mike McHugh)

        Thanks for the reminder, Melissa. Gender discrimination?

        For a whole slew of reasons, I will not even try to be there. Meet you somewhere else! 😉

        I should also mention as someone who is not a brown ale fan, this place has a really great brown ale. I hope it’s on tap

    • Yeast Infection

      Not so fast, young buck!

      • ah

        No yeast infections allowed either!!

        • Beer for the ladies only

          When you drink beer containing live yeast, it can remain live in digestive system and trans-locate into your body, affect your immune system and particularly your digestive system. Some men never really seem to be affected by this yeast, others are only affected by certain brands of beers, whilst others can start to suffer days after only a couple of beers. If you suffer from prostatitis, this live yeast can actually cause major issues, so for men best to avoid it altogether or drink whiskey instead.

          • Mike M

            Best not to drink at all. How about bread? How did this become a conversation about yeast infections? Didn’t Ben Franklin say that good beer is proof that God loves us?

          • Mike M (Mike McHugh)

            Best not to drink at all. How about bread? How did this become a conversation about yeast infections? Didn’t Ben Franklin say that good beer is proof that God loves us?

  • Holly Weatherwax

    I LOVE beer but cannot drink it…so I am one of those women who requests wine. Do you have some gluten free options? Wine or cider? Any plans to have gluten-free beer?

    • Melissa Berkemeier Romano

      Holly, we are licensed as a producer of malt beverage by the state of VA, meaning that the beverages we brew are required to contain a certain percentage of malted grain… this is the case with all small breweries. Because cider contains no grain, we are not legally allowed to produce it, and while we could consider brewing a beer predominantly of rice, corn or other gluten-free grain, the small confines of our brew kitchen and large amounts of malted barley milled daily therein, make being truly gluten-free nearly impossible. We do serve Kombucha teas, which are gluten-free, as well as custom craft sodas. We recommend the Lake Anne Coffee House/Wine Bar for excellent wine selections.

      • Holly Weatherwax

        Thanks, Melissa. I appreciate the information. I hope to get by for a visit soon. Glad to see you all at Lake Anne!

  • Mike M

    I challenge you to be specific and logical. Scary, huh?

    • The Constitutionalist

      An impossible request.

      • Mike M

        Hence the name calling and general insults. You see things differently than me, ergo you are stupid, mean, bigoted, immoral, . . . I grow weary. But there are [email protected] to cure! So we musn’t give up!

        • The Constitutionalist

          It’s a losing battle, but I’ll remain strong.

  • Mike M

    Mike M is a troll.

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