A feisty entrepreneur is so sick of misogynistic attitudes towards female distillers that she is starting a women-only operation.
A feisty entrepreneur is so sick of misogynistic attitudes towards female distillers that she is starting a women-only operation.

Spirited distiller’s vow to employ women only

A FEISTY Gold Coast entrepreneur who is sick of misogynistic attitudes towards female distillers is starting a women-only operation.

Catie Fry and husband Warren Brewer are already behind central Queensland's Saleyards Distillery which produces award-winning spiced rum and gin but Ms Fry is now starting new Clovendoe Distillery Co.

For Clovendoe she vows to only hire women to prove females can make spirits as well as the lads.

"I started observing the guys while they were distilling and what p---ed me off was it was just assumed I couldn't play with the big distill," Ms Fry said.

Clovendoe Distilling Co. is opening at Burleigh Heads in March. Picture: Glenn Hampson.
Clovendoe Distilling Co. is opening at Burleigh Heads in March. Picture: Glenn Hampson.

"It's such a male dominated industry. I had a moment where I'd literally just been distilling and one man asked for a tour and as I was about to begin, he asked for the distiller to do it.

"I don't need to employ men.

"There's no aspect of the production or skill that requires a man.

"There are so many talented and skilled women, so my mission is to employ women only from sales and bottling, to making the spirits," she said.

Clovendoe is set to open alongside Ms Fry's original distilling business at Burleigh Heads in March and will sell handcrafted botanical zero-proof and low-alcohol spirits.

She said the range was also targeted towards women particularly if "sober curious" but still wanted to enjoy a sophisticated drink that wasn't a "childish, sugary mocktail".

Clovendoe Distilling Co. co-owner Catie Fry. Picture: Glenn Hampson.
Clovendoe Distilling Co. co-owner Catie Fry. Picture: Glenn Hampson.

"The seed was planted throughout my pregnancy and while I was breastfeeding. I like white spirits, but I didn't want a hangover.

"I already didn't feel very special and like I was missing out and I just wanted a 30ml poured non-alcoholic spirit mixed in with a garnish. And I heard that echoed by a lot of my girlfriends and young mums.

"I bought a 20L copper pot distill and distilled throughout the nights making these products and then finally settled on the range I have now.

"Obviously I've created the range through a female lens and looked at botanicals that women are after and match really well with soda water," she said. "Women are also after something more refreshing and light, low in calories or gluten and sugar free."

 

Originally published as Spirited distiller's vow to employ women only


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