Lauren Woods Salazar
Wood Cellar Director & Blender
It’s no coincidence that Wood(s) is her middle name. Lauren developed New Belgium’s sour beer program, and serves as its chief curator, carefully tasting and blending the barrels, recording their flavors, personalities, and bringing them to life.
Ironically, given sour beer can been viewed as a most esoteric offering in the craft beer line up, Lauren is adamant about making craft beer accessible, sharing her passion for and knowledge of one of the world’s most ancient artisanal nectars.
On the top of Lauren’s list as a craft beer ambassador are integrity and relationships. The soul of a beer is as important as the relationships of those who are brewing it. When Lauren is not blending, she’s infusing energy and passion into the craft beer village by connecting with other brewers through collaborations, engaging with consumers by sharing beer in their communities, and learning with coworkers through beer education.
While she was developing the wood program, Lauren also built the company’s sensory program, where she developed the sensory program from a basic production check to its present world-class program and education. Lauren and her team focused on the education of New Belgium’s expert taste panel, sales staff and distributing partners in production and flavor profiles of each craft beer.
Lauren has served as a judge at the World Beer Cup and Great American Beer Festival, and as a faculty member of Siebel Institute of Technology. She has presented for the Craft Brewers Conference, World Beer Cup, American Homebrewers Association, American Society of Brewing Chemists, Master Brewers Association of America and others conferences and associations.
Lauren received her BSW from the University of Georgia a lifetime ago and holds a Certificate from University of California- Davis for Applied Sensory Science and Consumer Testing.