BOWSfest—the Black Owned Wine and Spirits Festival—is “a celebration of community, cohesion, and creativity…and at its core, a celebration of Black Excellence.” It’s a wonderful coming together opportunity for Black entrepreneurs in the spirit and wine industries as well as a chance for enthusiastic wine and spirit aficionados to taste some of the best craft spirits on the market.
BOWSfest was founded by the inimitable Chanel Turner, the first African American woman to found her own vodka brand, FOU-DRÉ Vodka, as well as the youngest woman to own her own spirits brand. We have so much respect for the work Ms. Turner does to uplift other Black entrepreneurs in the wine and spirits industry.
We had a blast sharing samples of Gin Recipe 01 and Gin Recipe 02 with hundreds of attendees as well as getting acquainted with Black-owned tequila brands like Casa de Reyes, T. Capri, and Talero. We sampled some excellent rum from Equiano and had the opportunity to explore collaborative partnerships with Sip & Tipple, a company that curates gift baskets of products from Black-owned wine and spirit producers. Another highlight was sampling the excellent bourbons and whiskies from Uncle Nearest (if you’re unfamiliar with the story of Nearest Green, you’ve got to check out the film narrated by actor Jeffrey Wright).
We also had the chance to reconnect with industry trailblazer Vanessa Braxton, celebrated owner of Black Momma Vodka as well as the first Black woman on the cover of Distillery Magazine and the first African American woman master distiller. Ms. Braxton is an inspiration to so many and we can’t wait to see how she continues to grow her brand and uplift other Black entrepreneurs.
But the best part of BOWSfest was meeting the people who love our spirits and support our mission. We received overwhelmingly positive feedback from new and old fans alike and were thrilled to see so many good people find common ground over their love of Common Ground Spirits. With Tory’s wife, cousin, and brother outside the main event repping for Common Ground Spirits and spreading the love, it was truly a family affair we won’t soon forget.
We are already looking ahead to BOWSfest next September and we hope to see you there!
If you are in the DC area, check out these restaurants and bottle shops that carry our gin!
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