Every beer is made with a story and a new brew created in Calgary is looking to tell the story of the LGBTQ rights movement in Canada and the U.S.
It’s been 50 years since the Stonewall Riots and the decriminalization of homosexuality in Canada, and seven Canadian breweries are looking to bring the story of Marsha P. Johnson to their customers.
“It felt like a really powerful time to speak to her legacy,” creator of the Protest Pale Ale, Kevin Learning, said. “She’s a huge figure in the queer rights movement and it’s really great that I can share that story with a much broader audience.”
Blindman Brewing, Freehold Brewing, High Line Brewing, Last Best Brewing, Trolley 5 Brewpub, and Yellowhead Brewing all joined Learning and Tool Shed Brewing Company in the collaboration of the beer.
The inspiration for the hazy, full-bodied beverage comes from a concept thought up by the Pink Boots Society in Calgary.
“Once a year for International Women’s Day, they do women’s only collaboration brews,” Learning said. “I’ve always really been inspired by that and wondered why there wasn’t something like that for queer people in the industry.”
It’s an idea that other brewing companies were quick to hop on board with, working together to help show that the brewing industry stands with the LGBTQ community.
“I think the story on the can at Tool Shed is absolutely fantastic,” Last Best Brewing & Distilling head brewer Natasha Peiskar said. “I think it brings more awareness to the general public about the LGBTQ community and I think in this political climate. it’s really important to have awareness and positivity around our community.”
For the creators of the beer, this is a movement they hope is just beginning.
“Hopefully we can make this initiative bigger and better and have an even bigger impact,” Learning said.
The beer will be available on tap at all participating brewing company’s locations as well by order through Tool Shed Brewing Company.