Faces of Kansas City: Woman's job involves taste-testing beer - KCTV5

Faces of Kansas City: Woman's job involves making sure our beer tastes up to par

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KANSAS CITY, MO (KCTV) -

Some may say one woman has one of the coolest jobs around.

It's 11 a.m. and Elizabeth Belden is drinking beer - at work. Twice daily, Belden organizes a beer-tasting session with about a dozen of her Boulevard Brewery co-workers.

"It requires a panel of employees who are trained to know what our beer is supposed to taste like and see if they say, yes, it's good to go or, no, we should re-taste it or there's something wrong with it or we need to take another look at it," Belden, who works on quality assurance for Boulevard Brewing Company out of Kansas City, MO.

On one specific day, she and her co-workers were conducting the final taste test of a new brew.

"So far the results have been really, really good," said Cris Morgan, a brewer with Boulevard. "Yeah, it's a pretty nice beer."

The new beer is a coffee ale made in partnership with another Kansas City company, The Roasterie.

"It's a beautiful beer. You get a lot of coffee aroma, a lot of coffee taste, you get some of the nuances from the coffee that we use that come out in the beer," said Paul Massard with The Roasterie.

KCTV5's Brad Stephens seemed to really enjoy the beer when he got to preview it and believes the union of the two companies was a very smart idea.

It's Belden's job to make sure the beer Boulevard brews tastes exactly as it should.

"So were spinning this down so it loses carbonation, than we can filter it so we can check the density," she said.

She and a team of three others work in a lab that's devoted to one thing - the sudsy science of beer perfection.

"No, no. I didn't know this was a thing. I didn't know beer science existed," Belden said.

Belden began at Boulevard six years ago on a part-time basis as she was trying to figure out what to do with her background in biology.

"I think when I told my parents that I was going to start working in a brewery they were like, ‘don't tell Grandma,'" she said.

Now she'll tell you she has one of the best jobs in Kansas City as Boulevard has grown into the country's 10th largest craft brewery.

When she's not surrounded by hundreds of thousands of bottles of beer at work, Belden likes to let the good times roll at the rink. A friend of hers once went to a roller derby bout or game and thought of Belden.

Belden is now a member of the Black Eye Susans, a Kansas City roller derby team.

"For some reason she (my friend) thought that that kind of high intensity, semi-violent-looking sport would appeal to me, so I looked into it," she said.

For Belden, it's the best of both worlds.

She feeds off the adrenaline of a fast-paced and, at times, rough sport while taking solace in the fact that there will be a cold beer waiting for her at work.

Boulevard's new coffee ale that was being taste tested should be available in stores next month.

Copyright 2013 KCTV (Meredith Corp.)  All rights reserved.

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