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Hinterland Brewery joins Black is Beautiful initiative

Published: Jul. 2, 2020 at 9:32 PM CDT
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ASHWAUBENON, Wis. (WBAY) - One industry is taking part in a global effort to raise awareness of the injustices people of color face. Some of those businesses in Wisconsin are also taking part.

“It’s looking a bit opaque. It’s got a good amount of yeast in it yet, but taste wise it’s pretty damn delicious I gotta say,” said Bill Tressler, Hinterland Brewery owner and president.

Hinterland Brewery is fermenting its latest creation, called Black is Beautiful.

“This is a full bodied imperial stout, over ten percent alcohol, so everybody’s going to get their money’s worth on this one,” said Tressler.

But Tressler says any money made on the beer isn’t actually profiting Hinterland.

“It boils down to making a difference in your own community,” said Tressler.

Black is Beautiful isn’t just any beer. It’s a collaborative effort started by Weathered Souls Brewery in San Antonio, Texas.

Weathered Souls is openly sharing the recipe and label design to Black is Beautiful, encouraging participating breweries to make it themselves and use proceeds to fund local efforts for racial equality or police brutality reform.

“If not us, who’s going to stand up and make the difference,” said Tressler.

Hinterland is coordinating with Black Lives United Green Bay to give the proceeds to the We Will Rise African American Resource Center in Green Bay.

“We’re here to stand in solidarity, continue to stand up for Black lives,” said Stephanie Ortiz, one of the Black Lives United Green Bay co-founders. “One of the ways businesses can help is by donating to local organizations that have leaders that are really mobilizing their people around issues like race.”

So far, more than 900 breweries across 18 countries are participating, including 15 in Wisconsin.

“I think, just literally seeing the beer’s name might prompt a conversation that maybe wouldn’t have happened otherwise,” said Ortiz.

The hope is that the beer will do just that, leading to a more inclusive community.

“I mean I envision folks sitting around a kitchen table with a glass of Black is Beautiful Beer having courageous conversations about race and what it means in our local community and how we can get involved in the movement for Black lives,” said Ortiz.

“Beer is kind of one of those things that breaks down all barriers, right? And I think most people can agree having a beer and a good conversation is a good place to start,” said Tressler. “So, I’ve got good hopes for it.”

Tressler says they should start selling the Black is Beautiful Stout around early August. It will be available in cans and on tap at Hinterland.

To learn more about the initiative and other breweries participating, visit the Black is Beautiful website.

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