The theme for this years International Women’s Day which is on Tuesday 8th March, is ‘Gender equality today for a sustainable tomorrow’. Thankfully for many years the world of wine has seen lots of pioneering females, who have been founders, winemakers, CEOs and master sommeliers.
Barbe-Nicole Clicquot is widely regarded one of the first leading ladies of wine. Known as the “Grande Dame of Champagne,” Clicquot was a young parent who took the reins of the family wine business aged 27 upon the death of her husband, François. She then transformed Veuve Clicquot into one of the world’s greatest Champagnehouses. She opened doors for a second generation of enterprising women in the Champagne business, like another famous widow, Louise Pommery.
As well as Veuve Clicquot, we stock many other brands who have a female at the helm. For example the wonderful Jordan Estates from Stellenbosch, South Africa, is run by Cathy Jordan and her husband Gary. Kathy is committed to elevating the profile of woman in the wine business through her Women in Wine Initiative, started in 2013 with the help of world renowned wine critic Jancis Robinson.
Cakebread wines which was established in 1972 in Rutherford, California has Stephanie Jacobs as its Director of winemaking. She was appointed in 2017, becoming only the fourth winemaker in the winery’s five decades. Stephanie is responsible for the most wonderful Napa Valley chardonnay’s we have in store.
In Argentina Crios Wines who make fantastic malbecs and Torentes was created by Susana Balbo. Crios was born out of her love for her children and desire to forge a legacy for her family, helping them navigate their own life journeys with lessons learned from a lifetime of trailblazing entrepreneurship. The iconic handprint logo on each Crios bottle symbolises this relationship and illustrates hands as powerful tools for mothers, allowing them to hold, to provide warmth, to nourish, and to comfort, as well as to teach the next generation the skills and wisdom achieved.
Conde Valdemar the renowned Spanish producer of fine Rioja’s , have been making wines for 130 years and one family have owned it since its inception. It was Ana Martínez Bujanda one of the current family members who was responsible for expanding the winery’s horizon by disembarking in Walla Walla (USA), thus becoming the first non-American winery to set up there.
Back in Champagne, one of our favourite glass of bubbles is Ayala. It is one of the original twenty-six Grandes Marques Champagne Houses and it’s history dates back to 1860. The brand is owned by Bollinger. Caroline Latrive, Cellar Master since 2011, carefully ensures that the House style is maintained by focusing on quality and creating wines that are renowned for their precision, delicacy and exquisite quality.
These are just a few of the fantastic women achieving great things in the wine industry. There are so many more. From all of our fabulous staff at Crafty Vintner, cheers to you on International Women’s Day!