“I’m a Jets fan,” says Forgotten Boardwalk founder Jamie Queli. “I would like to cry into my own beer while I watch them.” Lucky woman. Her Cherry Hill-based brewery, an October 2014 startup, is the exclusive craft beer at MetLife Stadium, home of her beloved team.
Like many other craft-beer entrepreneurs, Queli, a former product manager for an investment-banking firm, was a home brewer before going commercial. “There were lots of great breweries,” says the 31-year-old Bradley Beach resident, “but there was an opportunity for more.”
Forgotten Boardwalk’s beers and branding reflect Queli’s sense of humor and passion for her native state—especially the Jersey Shore. Each beer is crafted around a bit of New Jersey mythology or iconography. Ingredients and flavor profiles enhance the narrative, and the stories (or “pretty true stories,” Queli says) that inspired the brews appear on each can. Prime example: Morro Castle, a smoked porter, is named for the luxury liner that burned and sank in the waters off Asbury Park in 1934. The beer has a malty backbone and a smoky finish, with aromas of roasted coffee, smoke and tobacco. “You can taste what’s going on in our beers,” Queli says.
Queli says her age and gender initially made it difficult to be taken seriously in the male-dominated beer biz.
“It’s almost like you have to repeat yourself four or five times,” she says. “It’s like, ‘Oh, you work for them?’ ‘No, I own them.’”Click here to leave a comment