Cannery Brewery owner Patt Dyck enjoys a Naramata nut brown ale in the newly created Backyard at the Ellis Street brewery. (Monique Tamminga Western News)

Women in Business: Patt Dyck: Penticton’s pioneer of beer

‘I was bitten by the beer bug and I still am’ — Patt Dyck of Cannery Brewing

Included in Wednesday, May 26th print edition is our Women in Business magazine where we highlight South Okanagan women who are making a difference in the community and in the business world. Patt Dyck, Cannery Brewing owner and Penticton’s pioneer of beer embodies all the characteristics of community and elevating our beer scene.

Patt Dyck is the true pioneer of craft beer in Penticton.

Patt and her husband Ron jumped into the craft brewery scene 20 years ago, when there wasn’t really a craft beer scene yet in Penticton.

Since diving into beer making, starting with kegs, party pigs to growlers and then cans, Cannery Brewing has helped put Penticton’s craft beer scene on the national and international stage.

Patt did something else too that hadn’t been done in the beer scene.

She welcomed families to the brewery.

“That has been really important to us. At the time, there was nowhere for families to go,” she said. Pre-pandemic, families were welcome to the taproom to play one of the many board games available while enjoying the house-made nachos or pretzels while parents enjoyed a beer.

Before beer, Patt and Ron operated the popular Country Squire restaurant in Naramata for 23 years.

“The restaurant industry is 14 hour days and unrelenting,” said Dyck. “Our son was a teenager at the time. We wanted to spend more time with him and we thought craft beer was something fun to do and we were right.”

“Brewing is fascinating. I was bitten by the beer bug and I still am,” she said.

Cannery Brewing just celebrated its 20th anniversary. Sadly, because of the pandemic, there was no party. But once it is safe to do so, that’s the first thing Dyck will do is celebrate with all her staff who she refers to as ‘family.’

“The best part of this job is working with these amazing people.”

Dyck doesn’t feel she faced any barriers being a woman in a male-dominated industry.

“I believe you create a place for yourself on your capacity to do your job,” she said. “But I will say, the beer industry is very detail-driven which women excel at.”

The Cannery’s first batch of beer was brewed in the old Aylmer Cannery (now the Cannery Trade Centre) on April Fool’s Day, 2001.

Then in 2015, seeing that the old Cannery building had given them all it could, they found an old automotive shop on Ellis Street, converting it into the brewery of their dreams.

“This is the perfect spot for us. We couldn’t be happier here.”

One of the best parts about the space is being able to hold so many charity events, holiday parties, live bands and art shows, she said.

“It is such a privilege to be part of a community as vibrant as Penticton,” she said. “I see it in the diversity of the charity events that come here, volunteers and artists who have come through these doors.”

So what is the secret to her success?

“Relationships,” she said. “Relationships with our staff, customers, brew makers and everyone in between.”

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