Erica Campbell

Collective Family

Meet Erica! She does our Sales & Events for half of Toronto (the East part!) and Durham region.

What do you find most enjoyable about working in the brewing industry?
I like hearing the stories behind the abundance of breweries popping up. What made them open a brewery? Why did they choose to brew these beers? Overall, there are so many interesting people in beer: many of us have come from different industries and converged to beer. They were looking for an industry that is more dynamic and unconventional.

People would be surprised to know:
I am actually trained as a JK/6 teacher! Yep, true story. But this is WAY more fun so I have never looked back. Plus, drunk people tend to be quite child-like. So full circle, I suppose?!

What do you do when you’re not working?
Wait, what? There is such a thing as NOT working? Well, when I am not working Collective, you can find me working on my side hustle – The Society of Beer Drinking Ladies. It’s taken on a life of its own and the response has been amazing. I also like exploring beer & food scenes: both in Toronto and beyond. Beercation road trips for the win! And I should probably think of something non-beer related? I guess you could say I am a keen DIY-er: you can frequently find me in my kitchen making natural body products, brewing kombucha, or canning preserves. (Yes, I’ll take your orders now☺)
Favourite Collective Arts’ artist or musician?
The Jail Bird piece in Series 6 was a big hit. It was silly & light yet (due to the fact that the illustration is of a fist-bumping, tattooed Punk Rocker owl) but the look in that owl’s eyes is complicated and melancholy. I also am a sucker for dark beers & this piece was featured on our Stranger than Fiction Porter. I am going to miss seeing it everywhere as we move on to Series 7! This piece is also special because it is from an artist all the way from the UK: it continues to amaze me that we get so many international submissions!

What do you enjoy about working with CAB?
It has been a blast to get to know the Collective team! Everyone works hard & plays hard and connects over a love for beer, music and art. We’re all quirky in our own ways (allright, I’ll speak for myself) and that’s OK. The buzz and excitement around Collective Arts has been very cool to be part of: people always tell me they collect our coasters, bottles and cans. That they LOVE what we are doing. I love how we are really trying to do the brewery ‘thing’ differently and really connect with beer drinkers.

Number 1 thing on your bucket list.
Hmmm, I really don’t have one. BUT, I have been itching to explore more of the great beer countries of Europe: Belgium, Germany, UK, Czech Republic. Would love to check out some Trappist breweries, soak up the history of the region and revel in these classic styles.

How did you get started in the craft brewing industry?
I started realizing that beer was an amazing thing in Montreal- I went to McGill and lived walking distance to many impressive brewpubs: Helm, Reservoir, Benelux & Dieu De Ciel. This appreciation for beer was really just a general interest until I was newly graduated from U of T and was poor & broke. I would start my day perusing Craig’s List for jobs. One day, there was a post from Great Lakes Brewery: they were looking for PT staff to pour beer at the Toronto Festival of Beer. It sounded random and fun so having never worked in the service industry before, I did my Smart Serve online that night at applied. Well, 6 years later….:)

What’s your favourite beer that your brewery does not produce?
Well, THAT is tough. The beer that has stuck in my mind from 2016 is the Juicin’ IPA from Sawdust City Brewery. It was such an excellent example of that big, fruit bomb, milkshake type Vermont-style IPA. So smooth, despite being 7%. We haven’t seen a ton of these uber-hazy IPA’s up in Ontario yet, so that was tasty. I also love ‘crushable’ brews: @SideLaunch Mountain Lager, @BlackOakBrewing Nut Brown Ale & @GreatLakesBeer Canuck Pale Ale are often what I reach for. Well balanced, well-made and all coming from breweries that I definitely respect.

Follow Erica’s adventures @torontoerica & @ladiesdrinkbeer

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