'Shatter those glass ceilings': CT woman breaking barriers in world of craft beer

A New Haven woman is breaking barriers in the male-dominated world of craft beer.

News 12 Staff

Mar 26, 2021, 5:31 PM

Updated 1,157 days ago

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A New Haven woman is breaking barriers in the male-dominated world of craft beer.
"We are the first African American, and first African American woman-owned beer brand in the state of Connecticut,' says Alisa Bowens-Mercado, of Rhythm Brewing. 
She says the brewing company represents a foot in the door for Black ownership in a booming business.
"When you're dealing with a $114 billion industry annually, and people of color are getting less than 0.005% of that - we can't just consume as people, we have to start owning," she says.
When she's not teaching private salsa lessons, Bowens-Mercado is crafting unfiltered lagers with the folks over at Black Hog Brewing. She says, "I will tell you, my Connecticut brew family has been amazing. They welcome diversity."
Rhythm Lager has been on store shelves for almost three years now. But Bowens-Mercado says for Black History Month 2021, she wanted to try something new. Rhythm Brewing is going dark for the first time with a vanilla porter called BGM -- "Typically known as Black Girl Magic, but it's Birthday Girl Magic," she says.
Bowens-Mercado says she's not just sealing cans - she's opening doors.
"And hopefully people that look like me can say, 'I can be a brewer. I can own a beer brand.' And shatter those glass ceilings," she says.


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