Brewing company makes Disney’s Food & Wine Festival 

By Emilie St. John

Contributing Writer

INGLEWOOD — Inglewood-based Crowns & Hops Brewing Company is shaking up the craft beer market with its continued presence at the annual Food & Wine Festival at Disneyland California Adventure Park.

The festival features a diverse array of food, beverages, merchandise and special events at the park. Crowns & Hops has been on the highly coveted menu since 2022.

Beny Ashburn, co-founder of Crowns & Hops, is one of the few Black female executives in beer, and is a leader in the marketing and brand architect space. With her career in advertising and brand marketing, it was these efforts that caught Disneyland’s eye.

“Crowns & Hops is known for our merchandise and one of our supporters was at an event wearing our windbreaker and someone from Disney approached them because of it,” Ashburn said. 

From there the relationship was cultivated and Crowns & Hops made its debut at the Food & Wine Festival in 2022.

“The great thing about working with Disney is there were no expectations or criteria we had to meet because in approaching us already justified that we were a reputable brand, with quality products and our brand mission matched the overall Disney brand — preserving culture, building community and expanding pallets,” Ashburn said. “The Food and Wine Festival hits those three pillars that Crowns & Hops stands for.”

The next part of the process was providing Disney with product to taste, that would be featured at the festival, and that turned into permanent tap handles being placed at Lamplight Lounge at Pixar Pier.

Ashburn says it was a dream come true to be able to work with Disney and have their products showcased at the resort.

“People travel from all over the world to visit the Disneyland Resort, and as a business owner, Disney is absolutely a place you want to be due to their diversity and being able to expose our brand to a wider audience,” Ashburn said.

Ashburn is a proud graduate of Spelman University and began her career in advertising and brand marketing as an executive producer and creative strategist for some of the top ad agencies and brands.

Ashburn says that Crown & Hops merchandise plays a crucial role to the success of the brand as people are keen to wear it in public which generates more interest in working with them especially considering it is how Crowns & Hops initially connected with Disney.

“The branding began with the rubber wristbands and grew to T-shirts and jackets and having a highly visible logo creates more connectivity to the products,” Ashburn said. “We are in the process of developing new merch so be on the lookout.”

Crowns & Hops is one of 18 California brewers featured during the Disney California Food & Wine Festival, which runs through April 22.

Emilie St. John is a freelance journalist covering the areas of Carson, Compton, Inglewood and Willowbrook. Send tips to her at