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The Bend Magazine

Beautiful Brewing

10/31/2020 05:00AM ● By Alexis Harborth
By: Alexis Harborth   Photo Courtesy: Rebel Toad Brewing

Breweries across the entire country are coming together to raise funds, raise awareness, and raise a glass for a critical need. The Black is Beautiful collaboration is an initiative that started at Weathered Souls brewery in San Antonio. It exists to bring awareness to the injustices that people of color experience, and to support organizations that are making a difference.

All participating breweries were given a recipe for a beer developed by Weathered Souls, which designed it as a “moderately high abv. stout to showcase the different shades of black.”

Three breweries in Corpus Christi are among the hundreds who took part: Rebel Toad, Lorelei Brewing Company, and B&J's Pizza - Brew Pub are all committed to the long-term work of creating equality. 

Quinn Hendrick of Lorelei Brewing Company said they knew immediately that they’d be taking part. “When we heard about the Black is Beautiful initiative coming from Weathered Souls, we knew right off the bat we wanted to join in,” Hendrick says. “Beer is great at bringing people together, so using our platform to bring some awareness and reflection, while also showing our support for justice and equality across the board, was a no-brainer.”

Hector and Nathali Cavazos are the co-owners of Rebel Toad, and Hector is the Brewmaster of this downtown hotspot. “When we learned about the Black is Beautiful initiative, we knew we wanted to lend our voices for change,” says Nathali Cavazos.

The initiative invites breweries to take the beer recipe as-is or put a personalized spin on it. At these spots in the Coastal Bend, many unique batches have been developed. For instance, at Lorelei Brewing Company, you can try a raspberry and chocolate Black Is Beautiful blend. At Rebel Toad, there were two versions of the beer – one that follows the original recipe, and a hazelnut brew developed specially for Corpus Christi. 

The initiative asks partners in this collaboration to donate 100% of Black is Beautiful beer profits toward local foundations creating an impact, such as organizations supporting police brutality reform and groups providing legal defenses for those who have been wronged. Locally, funds are benefting several organizations, including the Texas Association of Black Personnel in Higher Education-Corpus Christi (TABPHE-CC), the Institute for Criminal Justice Training Reform, and MAP of Texas. 

“It was important to find an organization where proceeds donated would stay here in our community; that's why TABPHE- Corpus Christi is a perfect fit,” explains Nathali Cavazos. 

Across the world, this campaign is making an impact. To date, there are 1,158 breweries in 21 countries. Each of the 50 U.S. states has participation, and the Coastal Bend is proud to be home to three. 

Richard Mathews, Brewmaster at BJ’s, encourages more to consider taking part. Mathews is excited about what it will bring to our area. “We want to promote diversity in brewing,” he says. “If you feel like getting involved, you should. Let’s support our neighbors.”

The Black is Beautiful initiative serves many purposes. And one very important goal of this initiative is to show that the brewing community can be an inclusive and safe place. These breweries invite you to raise your glass and toast to equality and fighting racism.