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Women Owned

Women Owned

Posted on Mar 8th 2024

Written by
Noelle Starr

Women Owned. Women Made. Women Run.  

We are about to celebrate National Women’s Day on Friday, March 8th, 2024. As a woman, I both celebrate this day and lament that it needs to happen at all. I am proud that I have been a voice that our customers have relied on for over a decade, and yet I still often get asked, “Is there a Wine Guy around?” by customers looking for wine help. Store shelf talkers calling out “Women-owned” have appeared throughout retail stores as if it is a seemingly new concept, yet many wineries and distilleries have been women-owned and made since their inception.  



In fact, some of the biggest names in the business are run, made, and/or owned by women.  
Perhaps you’ve enjoyed one or two… 
Woodford Reserve Bourbon? Meet Elizabeth McCall, Master Distiller.  
Mount Gay Rum? Master Distiller Trudiann Branker holds the title.  
Bushmills Irish Whiskey? Master Blender Alex Thomas is the 2nd woman to hold that title; she was proceeded by Helen Mulholland.  
Bombay Sapphire Gin? Master Distiller Dr. Anne Brock. 
Johnnie Walker? Master Distiller Dr. Emma Walker. 

And that isn’t even scratching the surface. Or even looking at craft spirits. 
Locally, we have Alexis Bailly, Heather Manly, Emily Vikre (to name a few), whose quality of products should make us all proud to be Minnesotan. 

Domestically, there are a TON of female winemakers: Niki Williams of Cakebread Cellars, Maura Johnson of VASO Cellars, Avery Heelan of Larkmead Vineyards, Elizabeth Kester of Wente Family Estates, Kamee Knutson of Talbott Vineyards, Theresa Heredia of Gary Farrell Wines…the list goes on and on.  

Internationally, Elisabetta Foradori, Dr. Laura Catena, Cristiana Tiberio, Mary Taylor, Heidi Schrock, Anne Gros, are again, an example of surface BARELY being scratched.   

AND YET, as I marvel at the number of women leading this industry, we still have a ways to go.  

So, join me this year in celebrating women who have made the wines and spirits we enjoy every day and raise a glass to those in the world whose existence and circumstances are still far from celebratory.  


Some women owned products to try:



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