nine locks dirty blonde

Canadian brewery accused of misogynistic marketing of Dirty Blonde beer

A Nova Scotia brewery is coming under fire over a questionable marketing campaign it launched for one of its most popular beer releases, the Dirty Blonde Weizen.

The wheat beer may or may not have been named and marketed exclusively by and for men, with promotional phrases such as "we'd like you to meet another blonde from Dartmouth" and "everybody loves a dirty blonde from Dartmouth," which have been emblazoned on billboards and t-shirts.

Advertising materials from the Halifax-area brewery Nine Locks also include slogans like "blondes have more fun."

Basically, the innuendo is pretty blatant, and female bartenders who've had to serve the beer have had enough of the sexism that the brew's name and marketing have inspired.

One employee of a Halifax bar told the CBC that patrons have taken the beer's somewhat provocative name as an opportunity to make lewd comments like "are you served up in the glass?" and "I'd really like a dirty blonde, if you know what I mean" when ordering it.

Responses on social media are mixed, with many saying the complaints of misogyny are just another instance of millennial cancel culture gone out of control, and others begging that people not belittle experiences they have not and likely will not have to endure or understand (as men).

Others in the industry have agreed that the beer's advertising is problematic — 40 people from 17 different breweries across the province wrote a letter to the Craft Brewers Association of Nova Scotia asking the body to step in against the "discriminatory and misogynistic" language surrounding the beer.

Nine Locks staff told the CBC that they never had any bad intentions to offend and will be tossing the beer's current marketing campaign but keeping the brew's name, noting that a dirty blonde is a legitimate beer style.

There's certainly no problem with having a little fun with your marketing, but as a stakeholder in a largely male-dominated scene that isn't known to be the friendliest toward women, it would have been prudent for Nine Locks to consider the potential implications on certain members of its industry. 

It seems that this beer and its campaign could have used a little more forethought.

Lead photo by

Nine Locks Brewing Co.

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