The craft beer industry provides jobs for humans of all kinds, from the biochemists that work with yeast at White Labs to the creatives who curate various events and collaborations. We sat down with one of those creative humans this week, Alyssa Hartwick. A Florida transplant who spends her days pouring suds at Culture Brewing Co., playing with her pup Whiskey and creating beautiful succulent arrangements through her company Rain to Roots.
When did you start working for Culture Brewing Company?
I started working for Culture Brewing Co around three years ago. My first day just happened to be their 2-year anniversary celebration, a sold out event. They threw me to the wolves, but I survived.
Did you have any prior experience in the industry?
Culture was my first job in the craft beer industry, but before that, I had bartending experience back home in Florida.
Why Culture? What drew you to this specific brewery initially?
The first time I ever wandered into Culture I was on a walk with my dog in Solana Beach and really wanted a beer. The open and social atmosphere drew me in, but the Mosiac IPA and friendly beertenders won me over. Kristine Baker from the Women’s Beer Collective was my beertender that day and she welcomed me warmly. Now, Kristine and I host collaboration workshops at breweries all over San Diego together and have gotten quite close!
What’s your favorite part about working for Culture?
My favorite part about working at Culture is how dog-friendly it is. I have a regular named Humphrey, an Australian Shepard who gives me a high ten over the bar every time he sees me. Also, the location couldn’t be better… just a few doors down from the Belly Up and a block from Fletcher Cove!
Least favorite part about being behind the bar in general?
Least favorite part about being behind the bar is having to leave!
What do you do in your spare time?
In my spare time, you can usually find me camping, tending to my succulent garden, riding my cross-country Ellsworth mountain bike, or at dog beach with my adopted son, Whiskey.
Tell us about Rain to Roots!
I started my company Rain to Roots last October and it has been so fun watching it grow organically! We host fun and educational DIY succulent arrangement workshops at breweries in Southern California. I love growing my own succulents and seeing people enjoy them through creative expression!
Is there anyone you look up to in the craft beer industry?
Someone I look up to in the craft beer industry is our head brewer Aleks Kostka! She joined our Culture family about a year ago and has completely exceeded expectations by brewing some of the best-tasting beer I have ever tried. Her awesome personality and talent for making beer is definitely admirable!
Where do you see yourself going in the future? You seem to have an entrepreneurial streak. Do you want to continue to mesh this two industries of craft beer and creative expression?
In the future, I’d love to have greenhouses to grow more succulents! I definitely plan on continuing to mesh the craft beer industry with the succulent society by hosting DIY workshops mainly because its so much fun and I’ve had a lot of success with it. I’m also interested in landscape design and think it would be cool to take my arrangement talents to the next level and see them on a larger scale.
Favorite breweries besides Culture of course?
Love Modern Times! Lately, I’ve been into the alcoholic kombucha from Boochcraft. I recently visited Topa Topain Ventura and fell in love with their El Dorado single hop IPA also!
When you’re not drinking beer what are you drinking?
When I’m not drinking beer? Give me an Old Fashioned and I’m a happy camper!