A team of women from seven local breweries, dubbed the Lady Brewsters of the North Fork, collaborated to create and brew a new beer in celebration of Women’s History Month. 

“Lunar Ascent,” will be unveiled during the women’s month kick-off party at Digger’s Ales n’ Eats in Riverhead on Wednesday, March 4 from 6 to 9 p.m. The woman-crafter beer will be sold during the event and throughout the month at the seven breweries and other venues. 

A portion of the sales will be donated to the Family Service League — a non-profit that helps over 50,000 people annually through its over 60 programs at 20 locations across Long Island. The donations will be designated to fund treatment for women in areas such as homelessness and housing, addiction, trauma and mental health.

Leanne Weber of Greenport Harbor Brewing Company. Photo: Emil Breitenbach Jr.

“We wanted to come together and collaborate, highlighting the dynamic, creative women in this industry,” said hospitality and community manager at North Fork Brewing Co. Michelle Demetillo. “It’s a male-dominated field, but we are all strong women who appreciate craft beer, who want to have an impact, empower one another and support our community.” 

The name “Lunar Ascent” was coined by Sheila Malone of Long Ireland Beer Co. to represent women and their growth in typically male employment opportunities.

“[The beer] being lunar represents women in general and the ascent part pertains to us as a group of women taking roles and excelling in predominantly male environments like brewing,” said Malone.

The Lady Brewsters team is 13- woman who work in management, sales, marketing, hospitality, or production for breweries. The seven breweries include Eastern Front Brewing Co., Greenport Harbor Brewing Co., Jamesport Farm Brewery, Long Ireland Beer Co., Moustache Brewing Co., North Fork Brewing Co., and Übergeek Brewing Co. 

Brew day at North Fork Brewing Co. Photo: Emil Breitenbach Jr.

On brew day, March 10, several of the Lady Brewsters alongside other local women brewed the beer at North Fork Brewing Co. The recipe for the beer was developed by Catie Callaghan of Greenport Harbor Brewing, Demetillo, and Christine McCormack of Jamesport Farm Brewery with the guidance of Peter Barraud of North Fork Brewing and the production team at Greenport Harbor Brewing.

The IPA beer is brewed with ginger, locally sourced hibiscus tea and hops, and a variety of citrus and floral hops. The beer was also made with infusions of moonstones and black obsidian for their reported metaphysical benefits. 

“Whether you believe in the healing properties of tea, plants, or crystals, we wanted to brew a beer inspired by their holistic benefits for an important cause,” said Demetillo. 

Several other events that aim to empower, celebrate and encourage women will be hosted at breweries throughout March. The events include Spa and Wellness, art exhibits, self-defense workshops and more. 

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Julia-Anna Searson
Julia-Anna is a Riverhead native and a recent graduate of Stony Brook University, with a degree in Biology and minor in Anthropology. She currently lives in Cutchogue.