New brewery in Brooklyn with women, veteran at the helm

The first female and veteran-owned production brewery with a taproom in all five boroughs has opened in Brooklyn.

Co-founders LeAnn Darland and Tara Hankinson launched Talea Beer in 2019 after they saw a void in the space and sold their brews to local retailers. They opened the taproom and brewery in Williamsburg this month.

"All of our beers are low in bitterness and fruit-forward, so whether that's with IPAs the hops we use and the way we use them, they end up being really tropical, really citrusy," Hankinson said. "Juicy in flavor versus the stereotype that a lot of craft beer is very bitter and high in alcohol — that's not our style."

Darland said their goal was to make a more inclusive beer for any drinker. The duo loves when patrons say they don't consider themselves craft beer drinkers but love their product. In fact, that person is Talea's target customer.

Of Talea's 20 staff members, 16 are women. And all of the employees rotate positions so everyone can try their hand at brewing.

"It's very exciting to be able to build a more inclusive company because beer really is for everyone, despite it being a male-dominated industry," Hankinson said. "We want all types of people to be able to work for us and be in this industry." 

The taproom caters to women and mothers of all ages with nonalcoholic options. Plus, it doubles as a coffee shop and is open daily to serve customers at 8 a.m. 

"The beer community has been incredibly supportive. I think everyone is aware that there is an issue with diversity in the beer industry," Darland said. "We have been welcomed with open arms, which has been great."

Talea Beer Co. | 87 Richardson St., Brooklyn, NY 11211 |

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