Salinas-born Marlene Garcia has worn many hats in her career. From teacher to communications coordinator for nonprofit Building Healthy Communities and now a member of the mayor’s small business recovery task force, her work has leaned toward community enrichment.
As Garcia prepares for the opening of her latest project, Brew-N-Krew Ale House, she becomes part of a new community: women brewers in a male-dominated industry. It may come as no surprise, then, that her debut beer tilts toward strengthening that community.
Pink Boots, an unfiltered extra pale ale released March 19, is a collaboration beer between Brew-N-Krew, Watsonville-based Fruition Brewing and Brew Cruz, which facilitates brewery tours around Santa Cruz. Garcia describes the beer as having the cloudy look of a hazy IPA, a hoppy, tropical aroma and a citrus flavor with notes of ripe mango.
For every can sold, $1 gets donated to the Pink Boots Society, a nonprofit aimed at supporting women in the brewing industry through education.
Garcia’s journey into brewing started as a practical hobby with friends. “We used to travel around California trying different craft beers but it started feeling like we were spending too much money on beer, so we thought, why don’t we just make our own?” she says.
The concept of Brew-N-Krew has been nine years in the making. The pandemic slowed the opening of her Main Street location, but Garcia expects to cut the ribbon this year.
For more information, visit instagram.com/brewandcrewsalinas