A 3-day event organized by Marcia Jones of Urban Connoisseurs in partnership with Uncorked & Cultured, encouraging consumers to #BuyBlackWine for Black History Month.
25. January 2021. – Winemaking is an ancient profession, originating in the Old World, but in 2021 little is known about the growing diversity of this industry. With nearly 80,000 wineries, the United States is the fourth largest wine producer in the world. Often missing are the stand-alone black basements, whose roots go back to the early 1940s with John June Lewis, Sr. of Virginia. To raise awareness of diversity in the wine industry, Urban Connoisseurs, in partnership with media platform Uncorked & Cultured, organized the first International Wine Summit (IWS) 2021, a three-day virtual event featuring some of the world’s most respected winemakers of African descent.
With an emphasis on diversity, the 2021 International Winemakers Summit will educate consumers about the various options available in the virtual marketplace, with information panels led by world-renowned sommeliers and featuring 12 award-winning black wine makers from around the world. The sommelier will cover topics such as wine trends, terroir and distinction, the different aromas and flavors of wine, and much more. The three-day summit, which will be held from 19 to 21. February 2021 will teach everyone from beginner to expert.
Among them are renowned winemakers from the African diaspora:
- Chris Christensen – Bodkin Wines (Sonoma, CA)
- Phil Long – Long Term Wines (Livermore Valley, California)
- Theodora Lee – Theopolis Vineyards (Yorkville, CA)
- Marie-Ines Romel – Marie Césaire Champagne (Champagne, FR)
- Raymond Smith – Native Cellars (Paso Robles, California)
- Shrami Right – Shrami Guilty (TX)
- James Moss – J. Moss Vina (Napa Valley, California)
- Tinashe Nyamudoka – Kumusha Wines (Breed Valley, SA)
- Steve Byfield – Nyarai Cellars (Niagara, CNN)
- Nicole Kearney – Sipping and sharing wine (IN)
- Shae Frisette – Frisette Winery (Red Mountain, WA)
- Dan Glover – Objective Wines (Healdsburg, CA)
I am very excited to honor 12 black winemakers, recognize them for their contributions to the wine industry and be the face of opportunity for the next generation of black winemakers. There are more than 10,000 wineries in the United States. Winemakers of African descent make up less than 1 percent of the industry, according to Marcia Jones, founder of the IWS Scholarship Fund and the Black Winemakers Scholarship Fund. With the increase in wine sales in the past year, I think it’s time to celebrate black professionals in all sectors, and my goal for Black History Month and beyond is to encourage consumers to support black winemakers.
In addition to supporting winemakers of color, the International Winemakers Summit also features a virtual brunch with three award-winning chefs: Chef Jerome Brown, author Caroline Saul and participant in Extreme Chef and Food Network; chef Sabrina Tinsley, co-owner of Osteria La Spiga and Iron Chef competitor against Bobby Flay; and Ricky Simpson, Jr. Chief of the Atlanta Hawks and winner of the 8th prize.
Marie Inés Romel
During Black History Month, Urban Connoisseurs is launching the #BuyBlackWine campaign in partnership with Uncorked & Cultured, including the new Urban Connoisseurs Wine Club, which offers members the opportunity to receive four wines from four different black winemakers each quarter. In addition, Uncorked & Cultured will publish weekly interviews with wine industry professionals, distributors and liquor stores, as well as wine reviews from African winemakers. The multi-platform campaign will create an experience for consumers to understand the growing heritage of different winemakers, as well as a catalogue as a resource for wine lovers to consciously support the promotion of equality in the wine industry.
About the gourmets of the city
The mission of Urban Connoisseurs is to impact the sustainable growth of the wine community by increasing the number of African-American winemakers in the United States, creating opportunities for the next generation to pursue various careers in the wine industry, and supporting the brand and heritage for the next generation.
About the unknown and the culture
Uncorked & Cultured is a media company that organizes original content, e-commerce and experiences to provide purposeful direction to consumers and brands that share the same ideals. With a mission to connect black consumers to wine, wellness, culture and an adventurous lifestyle in an authentic and uncomplicated way.
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