Like many people in the industry, Emily Vachris, sales and marketing rep for Blue Earl, in Smyrna, Del. had a passion for craft beer and brewing long before she started working in it.
Homebrewing is a significant part of the story of many brewing professionals, even when they don’t brew from day to day. One of the reasons I think it makes such a big difference is because being successful in the brewing business has a lot to do with understanding the process, and what makes different beers have different characters.
Before she was a sales and marketing rep for Blue Earl, in Smyrna, Del. Emily Vachris was a homebrewer. She and her roommate, whom she shanghaied as her quasi-willing assistant brewer, enjoyed learning about the process and brewing lots of different beers for her family and friends to try. For her day job, she worked in marketing at Delaware State Parks, helping promote and coordinate events, among which was the Zip and Sip Beer Festival at Lums Pond.
Emily was part of the team what put that event together and it was a huge success. It was something more than that for her, though.
“It was great seeing how many Delaware breweries were able to make it out to the event,” she said. “I think it shows a lot about the delaware craft breweries as a whole.”
The festival gave her some insight into how the industry worked beyond just making beer. It showed her that making great beer was the first step in a much longer process of getting people to look for and choose a specific beer.
When the opportunity presented itself to go to work selling and promoting for Blue Earl, she said, “It felt like a natural fit.”
Since then, as the brewery has grown to greater regional prominence and local fame, Emily said every day has been an adventure.
“I love that each day is different,” she said. “I have made some lifelong friends, and it’s great to develop those kinds of relationships. I really enjoy talking with managers from different restaurants, reps from local breweries, and people at festivals, tap takeovers, and even tastings.”
Getting out to talk to people about beer she loves, and hearing that they love the beer she is selling provides Emily with a ton of satisfaction.
“I love hearing stories of how people found out about us and what they like about Blue Earl! It’s exciting to hear stories from people who are as passionate about beer and Blue Earl as I am.”