Top 10 female master distillers and blenders9th March, 2016 by Kristiane Sherry
Despite significant progress, the spirits industry has yet to shake off a sense of patriarchal dominance. But as our collection of top [women] master distillers and blenders shows, excellence in spirits production can never be confined to just one gender.Rum blending is a combination of art and science, asserts Appleton Estate’s master blender, Joy Spence. Which is why the lack of women studying and working in STEM fields (science, technology, engineering, and mathematics) should be a concern to the spirits trade, with all four disciplines at the heart of production.
As our collection of top master distillers and blenders – who happen to be female – attests, STEM excellence, even in the often male dominated spirits trade, does not just belong to one gender. This collection of chemists, technologists and analysts are responsible for some of the world’s biggest spirits brands, and are leading the charge in pushing not just product development, but the wider industry forward.
While celebrating the talents of this group of blenders and distillers, its worth remembering that even in 2016 women associated with spirits get a raw deal. Female bartenders in the UK are paid on average 18% less than their male counterparts, according to the British Hospitality Association, and sexual harassment of staff and patrons in bars remains a real issue.
In the continuing spirit of International Women’s Day, click through to discover our top blenders and distillers, in no particular order – who happen to be female.
Have we left someone off the list? Let us know in the comments below.