Francis Ford Coppola’s Spirits Collection Celebrates Historically Significant Women

Food & Drink

Ada Lovelace gin cocktailCoppola

When most think of Francis Ford Coppola, they think film. However, he’s also the co-proprietor of The Family Coppola brands, a lifestyle conglomerate that encompasses a range of specialties from wine and food to resorts and adventure, which he operates alongside his wife, filmmaker Eleanor Coppola.

A more recent endeavor of his that has come to fruition is in the world of craft spirits.

After the California Craft Distillers License was put in to effect in Jan. 2017, Coppola saw an opportunity to not only create a collection of quality spirits, but a collection that tells a story with each bottle. Stories that honor the trailblazing women that have profoundly impacted his life, in addition to others, thanks to their innovation, brilliance and tenacity.

Currently the collection of small batch, house-crafted Great Women Spirits features three historically significant women. The Countess Walewska Premium Vodka, Ada Lovelace California Distilled Dry Gin and Agnesi 1799 Small Batch American Brandy.

Countess Walewska vodka cocktailCoppola

The spirits are made from spring water from the site of Coppola’s Inglenook winery in Napa and vineyard grapes and herbs.

Forbes chatted with Kathleen Murphy, Vice President of Spirits & Innovation at The Family Coppola and Allison Westhoven, President of Sales at The Family Coppola to discuss this special collection, what its future holds and women leaders in the spirits world.

Here’s what they had to say.

What was the inspiration behind launching Great Women Spirits?

Murphy: The inspiration for Great Women Spirits is entirely Francis Coppola’s and one that he has been envisioning for years. As a youngster, he read a book called Twelve Against the Gods by William Bolitho. The author tells the story of twelve notable men throughout history. Francis questioned himself, “What about the women? Who would the twelve women be?” Being a master-storyteller Francis has been identifying and researching who the twelve women would be for a long time. Once the California Craft Distillers License was put into effect in January 2017, Francis saw an opportunity to tell the remarkable stories of these women via a line of spirits. Each spirit telling a different story  inside and outside the bottle.

What goes into choosing the women who adorn the bottles of Great Women Spirits?

Murphy: The women selected generally took excessive risks in their lifetime and eventually achieved things that woman didn’t have the right or the accepted privilege to pursue. Each of the women honored has been extensively researched and personally selected by Francis.

For example, our gin celebrates Lady Ada Lovelace. Born in London in 1815 and daughter of Lord Byron and protégé of Charles Babbage, she is recognized today as the world’s first computer programmer. And our Brandy, Agnesi 1799, honors an Italian woman named Maria Gaetana Agneis. She was a brilliant 18th century mathematician, philosopher, and theologian. A known prodigy and fluent in seven languages by her eleventh birthday, she was the first woman to write a mathematics handbook and also the first female mathematics professor appointed at a university.

Agnesi brandy cocktailCoppola

Will more spirits be launched in the future? Do you have women chosen to name those bottles after?

Murphy: Yes, you bet. Three new spirits will come to life in the next 12 months. In May, we’ll launch a Rubi Amaro named after a 4th-century theologian woman that was murdered for her teachings. This summer a three-year-old rye will honor a woman that was influential in and instrumental to Francis’ career. Lastly, our distiller has been experimenting with red vermouth that might launch by the end of this year. We can’t talk much about her yet… but she had a way with words.

Francis has been dreaming up this brand line for years. Of course, there is the challenge of trademarking desired names. Some of the historical female game-changers that inspire Francis the most were not trademarkable (like Cleopatra). One can anticipate at least 12 spirits in total. The number would mirror the number of individuals that originally inspired him in the book Twelve Against the Gods. Plus, it is motivating to consider that one day we would be able to make just about any cocktail using our Great Women Spirits exclusively.

What are your thoughts on the growing number of women leaders in the spirits world?

Westhoven: There have always been very influential women in Luxury Goods. Companies with diverse portfolios that include Spirts as part of our broader Global Luxury portfolio tend to have clearer growth paths for women who may begin their careers in Wine, Champagne or even Fashion. We are also seeing women more personally interested in Spirits as consumers. As the consumer base for Spirits has become more equally distributed, the Leadership eventually starts to follow.

Products You May Like

Articles You May Like

Maritim Resort and Spa, Mauritius
Michelin To Introduce A Restaurant Guide To The State of California
BUSINESS CLASS TO DUBAI
Why Pineau Des Charentes Should Be Your New Home Bar Staple
Los Angeles and Hawaiian Islands on board Celebrity Eclipse

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *