In a male-dominated field, Megan Greenwood is brewing up something for everyone.
Greenwood Brewing was founded in 2017 and began selling their beers through other local breweries. Greenwood has been working to help women feel less “intimidated or underrepresented in the craft beer scene” by creating a universally enjoyable product.
“The first beer I ever made was the Herstory brew,” Greenwood said. “The Herstory brew is really a focus on featuring women’s stories and what they’re doing. That’s where it started, and then it became one of our signature beers.”
Greenwood Brewing was scheduled to open in March of 2020, but the pandemic put a hold on things. The brewery’s downtown location at 922 N. 5th St. opened later in July. Greenwood Brewing offered to-go beer with curbside pick-up and had space for about 150 seats outside, providing options for all their customers.
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“We opened with everyone in mind and what their definition of what safe is,” Greenwood said. “It was really clear to us that because of our inclusivity brand pillar that we were going to open and be a space for everyone, whether or not they’re people who are feeling comfortable enough to go out.”
Confidence, empowerment, and inclusivity are Greenwood Brewing’s three brand pillars and are the foundation of the business. The primarily outdoor space at the brewery is inviting and is designed to promote conversations between customers.
In order to make the most inclusive beer, Greenwood considers things that many male brewery owners might not think about. Something as simple as hand size might not seem like a big deal to other craft beer makers, but Greenwood said that making a smaller container for the beer makes it more approachable for women.
“If you look at the number of women who own breweries in the country, as of last year, it was less than 2% of breweries that are owned by women. When you think about it, it makes sense that a lot of the products that we see might not feel authentic to us, as women, because they’re mostly being made by men,” Greenwood said.
Patrons commented on the approachability of the drinks offered at the brewery. One customer, Omar Rivera, said that he had never been to a brewery before but went to Greenwood Brewing with some friends.
“The beers go down smooth. I’m not really a beer drinker because that’s a man’s drink but like these beers are super good,” Rivera said.
Rivera also commented on the unique taste of the IPA he ordered; the drink was called a Warrior Haze and had an orange flavor. Both Greenwood and the customers seem to agree that the environment and products offered at Greenwood Brewing are distinctive and unlike anything else that can be found in the Phoenix area. Greenwood has shown the importance that small business owners begin to market to those demographics who have been left out of certain products and industries.
“We make an inclusive product that is for everyone regardless of gender,” Greenwood said.
It is also important to recognize those local business owners who are testing the boundaries of what is stereotypically accepted by industry. Greenwood understands her role in this evolution, and she seems to be earning loyal support because of it.