Life of a Brewer

Life of a Brewer


So typically when you brew a beer at home
you’re brewing about a five gallon batch, and the first batch of beer I brewed was my
own recipe and I brewed 600 gallons of it. [ MUSIC ] My name is Allison Higi and I am
the brewer here at Court Avenue Restaurant and Brewing Company in Des Moines, Iowa. [ MUSIC
] And I’m definitely unique in that I was never really a big beer drinker before I started
working in a brewery, before I started serving in a brewery, before I kind of got to know
beer. So after I graduated from Purdue with biology and chemistry degrees I went to work
in a hospital laboratory. The hospital laboratory. Laboratories had an epicenter of sadness and
it was just really difficult for me to do, so I then left the hospital lab and went to
wait tables in a brewery where I started as a server. After serving for a while, I was
then promoted to Assistant Brewer in the brewery, so I stared working with fermentations, cleaning
the vessels. Finishing beer, carbing beer and from there, because of my science background,
I was promoted to quality manager. They put me in a lab testing beer. But having that
quality science background, I think that really helped me to learn how to brew and what’s
important and the parameters of brewing. And the flow of brewing and the balance of brewing.
And all of those things together just made me fall in love with the process. Traditional
first brewers historically were. Usually women has had a lot to do with the fact that the
beer was simply brewed at the home. Perhaps the men were out hunting. Somewhere along
the lines, that changed [ LAUGH ] into the, the way we see the industry today, which is
a higher ratio of men to women. I do feel sometimes like, [ LAUGH ] like the oddball
out, and l can tell too when I talk with other male brewers that I. Do see brewing from perhaps
a different perspective. But I’m not always sure if it’s because I’m a woman or if it’s
because I have a science background. Brewing a beer is, it’s a very physical job. And I
enjoy it, personally. It’s like the perfect combination of science and art that kinda
comes together. But all in all, I do enjoy making a beer and then watching. [ MUSIC ] Watching
people come in and sit and drink it and sharing with them and talking with them about it.
It just makes it more rewarding as a craft brewer.

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