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Beer Buzz: Meet the Naperville Beer Department

With International Women’s Day just around the corner, we’re eager to share the latest from our beer department at Naperville Binny’s. The department already boasts 1600 beers lining the shelves and filling an 18 door beer cooler, and we can’t wait to see where these ladies take it next. Alison and Melanie, two impressive and eager beer enthusiasts, make up the first all-women beer department at Binny’s. Q and A after the jump!
 

“You may have to work twice as hard, but the challenge is the best part of the job. If you can prove you can handle the job, you’re pretty much set.” – Alison

 

Melanie & Alison

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What sparked your interest in beer?

Melanie: I moved to San Diego with my husband and fell in love with the beer scene out there. There was always a beer event to go to or a new brewery around the corner to try.
Alison: I worked in a few bars throughout college and began tasting and learning about beer as much as I could. I was hooked before I knew it.

 

Any beer trends you’re into lately?

M: I’m always eager to try a new IPA. I’ve been drawn to sours lately, as well.
A: Sours and barrel aged varieties. I can’t get enough of them.

 

They say everyone remembers their first, what was yours?

M: I remember my first time going to an actual brewery. It was the Pizza Port Brewery in San Diego and I fell in love with their really hoppy IPAs. From then on, I continued to visit different breweries and started drinking more and more styles of beer.
A: Founders Breakfast Stout.

 

What advice would you give to women breaking into the industry?

M: Show enthusiasm. Ask a ton of questions and taste as many different beers as you can.

A: Knowledge truly is power. You may have to work twice as hard, but the challenge is the best part of the job. If you can prove you can handle the job at hand, you’re pretty much set.

 

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What’s a new brew on the shelf that has your attention?

M: We have a few beers from Maine Beer Company. Their label descriptions are adorable and fun to read!
A: Snapshot by New Belgium. It’s like Blue Moon and 312 had a baby, but with a higher IQ.

 

What industry publications do you follow to keep up with trends, new beers, etc?

M: Honestly, I learn a ton from our shoppers. They always bring new beers to our attention and tell us what they’re into.
A: Beer Advocate is my go-to. The distributors that we work with are helpful in keeping us up to date on new products and education.

 

Are there any beer labels you’re totally digging right now?

M: Dogfish Head has always impressed me with their labels.
A: I can’t get enough of Off Color and Solemn Oath labels.

 

What can customers look forward to at your location?

M: We’re always updating our new arrivals rack and are constantly adding to our local section. It’s a pretty fantastic selection.
A: Our cider aisle is expanding like rapid fire. There’s definitely something for everyone to like.

 

What’s your favorite part about working at Binny’s?

M: The product, customers and variety of day to day tasks make each day different from the next.
A: Melanie and I get a tremendous amount of support from the Naperville staff and it makes working here so much better. Erica, Amanda, June and Summer are four women in this store who are always ready to step up and help out in the beer department.
 

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Stop in to Binny’s in Naperville when you get the chance and say hi to Melanie and Alison or give them a follow on their personal Twitter account. They are eager to hear what new beers you’re trying!



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