LGBTQIA+ Owned Brands to Have on Your Radar
As consumers seek beer, wine, and spirits led by LGBTQIA+ community members, here’s how to meet demand and support these brands
June commemorates LGBTQIA+ Pride Month, a time dedicated to honoring and demonstrating support for the gay, lesbian, bisexual, trans, and queer community as a whole. With consumers advocating for greater diversity and representation of historically underrepresented groups in various sectors, LGBTQIA+ beverage labels are finally gaining much-deserved recognition – not only during Pride Month, but throughout the entire year.
“I feel like there is more awareness now that diverse beer brands exist,” says Bryan Van Den Oever, the co-owner of Red Bear Brewing Company in Washington, D.C. “People are searching out impactful ways that they can help the LGBTQ community, and purchasing products is one way that they do that.”
The overall share of these brands on Drizly remains small, but the LGBTQIA+ category has expanded since its introduction to the platform in 2021. Currently, there is unprecedented variety among LGBTQIA+ labels, indicating that brands are as eager to share their identities as consumers are to support them. While liquor once accounted for nearly 75 percent of LGBTQIA+ products on Drizly, beer and wine brands have gained share in the past year. Today, LGBTQIA+ liquor products still dominate with 41 percent of share, with beer and wine making up 32 and 26 percent of share, respectively.
In the past year, the 10 most-popular LGBTQIA+ products on Drizly have also shifted to include new brands like Tribini and SuperGay, among others, suggesting that consumers are eager to try new products and support new brands led by the LGBTQIA+ community.
Brad Bear, the proprietor of Mercury Wine based in Geyserville, California, encourages retailers to draw attention to their LGBTQIA+-owned items to better support these brands. “I think that if a customer were walking through your retail establishment and saw a rainbow flag next to a bottle,” he says, “it would let them know that there are gay winemakers out there, and that you’re supporting the gay community.”
Kara Larson, the co-founder of Rhode Island Spirits in Pawtucket, Rhode Island, recommends retailers reach out to smaller, less-known beverage brands that genuinely support LGBTQIA+ causes and create a real impact. “It used to be that massive international brands would slap rainbows on their products for Pride Month, and that was pretty much all you saw throughout the year,” she says. “Now, LGBTQ+ owned businesses are getting a much more prominent kind of attention than they’ve had before. It’s more authentic and less marketing-driven.”
When exploring new products, Larson suggests consulting local LGBTQIA+ organizations such as chambers of commerce and travel agencies to find new brands. Similarly, retailers can inquire with their distributors about carrying LGBTQIA+ owned products.
As the U.S. population grows more diverse and conscious consumption continues to drive consumers, the demand for products crafted by the LGBTQIA+ community will expand. “It comes down to increasing sales if retailers can find ways to effectively message their support for diverse crafters,” says Van Den Oever.
The list below highlights some of the fastest-growing LGBTQIA+ owned drinks brands on Drizly.
Mother Road Brewing Company
Based in Flagstaff, Arizona, Mother Road Brewing Company is an independent craft brewery rooted in sustainability and the creation of “third” spaces where everyone is welcome. Since Mother Road was founded in 2011, their beers have been winning awards. Today the flagship Tower Station IPA is Arizona’s best-selling independent beer.
Founded by Jason Pazmino and Jon Moore, Gay Beer is a golden lager that aims to bring inclusivity and diversity to the craft beer market. Based in Brooklyn, Gay Beer honors the longstanding heritage of the queer community, while celebrating the connections made by sharing great beverages. A portion of all Gay Beer proceeds is donated to LGBTQIA+ organizations.
Established in 2020 with the idea that “craft spirits should have more fun,” Supergay produces craft vodka from corn in upstate New York. Cofounder Tom Jackson grew up working in restaurants, and designed Supergay to be an ideal spirit for cocktails at home and behind the bar. Supergay also donates a percentage of its proceeds to LGBTQIA+ foundations and causes that promote and cultivate inclusion, hospitality, and equality.
Well-known for their range of ready-to-drink (RTD) Espresso Martinis, Tribini is a cocktail company focused on creating RTDs that deliver the experience of craft cocktails at home. Each canned beverage is made using real espresso and vodka.
Kings County Distillery
The first distillery to be founded in New York City since Prohibition, Kings County Distillery is a Brooklyn-based producer of premium whiskeys. Cofounded in 2010 by Colin Spoelman and David Haskell, Kings County produces a wide range of award-winning whiskeys and is best-known for their bourbon, rye, and single-malt bottlings.
Dominio de Punctum
Dominio de Punctum is a family-owned winery based in central Spain, where siblings Jésus, Ruth, and Cristina Férnandez practice organic and biodynamic viticulture. Their land has been prized for winemaking since the Roman era, and together the Férnandez family is leading the estate to carbon neutrality while producing premium Spanish wines.
Tolago Hard Seltzer
Tolago prides itself on being a “better for you” seltzer brand, relying on premium ingredients for its innovative line of hard seltzers. Founded and led by Nick Greeninger, Tolago is unique in that it calls upon the talents of 34 member-owners to make the best possible hard seltzers. All of Tolago’s products – with flavors ranging from cherry rose to ginger pear – are made with premium, ethically sourced ingredients and come in sustainable packaging.
Flying Panda Specialty Beverage Co.
Launched in 2019 by Michelle Porter, Flying Panda produces a range of ready-to-drink cocktails using vodka and natural flavors. A former bartender, Porter combined her interests in beverage mixology, formulation science, and environmentalism into the core values of Flying Panda. Each Flying Panda flavor benefits a different species on the vulnerable or endangered species list.
California-based Sincere Cider crafts premium ciders with a range of culinary apple varieties and French wine yeasts. Created by Bex Pezzullo, Sincere Cider is part of the 1% for the Planet initiative, donating at least one percent of its sales to local environmental nonprofits.
This women-owned brand offers an array of handcrafted cocktail ingredients, including shrubs, syrups, bitters, tonics, and ginger beer. Among 18.21’s far-from-standard varieties are Apple Cardamom Shrub, Japanese Chili and Lime Bitters, and Rosemary Sage Simple Syrup. Dedicated to giving back, the company donates part of its proceeds to pro-diversity charities.
Eco Terreno Wines & Vineyards
Founded in 2012 by Sebastiani Vineyards veteran winemaker Mark Lyon, Eco Terreno offers an impressive lineup of estate-grown wines, including Pink Pride rosé. Lyon’s Alexander Valley vineyard is certified biodynamic, reflecting Lyon’s passion for environmental causes. He’s also a big supporter of organizations that support the LGBTQ+ community.
Gary Farrell Vineyards & Winery
The home page for this iconic Russian River Valley winery’s website includes icons for the Out Alliance the Human Rights Campaign — designed to let the LGBTQ+ community know they’re safe at Gary Farrell. The winery’s welcoming philosophy comes courtesy of LGBTQ+ winemaker Theresa Heredia, who has crafted the winery’s elegant Chardonnay and Pinot Noir wines since 2012.
Jon Moore and Jason Pazmino launched Brooklyn-based Gay Beer in 2018 to make great craft beer that speaks to and supports the LGBTQ+ community. A portion of proceeds from sales of the duo’s citrus-kissed golden lager support LBGTQ advocacy groups, including The Center and Project Renewal.
Gentleman Farmer Wines
Vintners Jeff Durham and Joe Wolosz made wine together in a garage for many years before launching Gentleman Farmer in 2005. Since then, they’ve become known as pillars of Napa Valley’s LGBTQ+ community. The winery makes less than 1,000 cases per year of sought-after Bordeaux-style reds, plus a Chardonnay and a rosé, from vineyards in Napa’s Oak Knoll district.
Republic Restoratives Distillery
This women-owned, crowd-funded distillery in Washington, D.C. is out to buck convention and break glass ceilings. Case in point: Republic Restoratives’ latest creation, Madam, a blend of 7-year-old bourbon and 5-year-old rye, complete with a portrait of Vice President Kamala Harris.
Rhodium/Rhode Island Spirits
Spouses Cathy Plourde and Kara Larson founded Rhode Island Spirits (RIS), with its flagship Rhodium brand, in 2019. RIS partners with small local farms to produce distinctive products like Forager’s Gin, made with wild ingredients found along Rhode Island’s coasts and valleys. As New England’s only LGBTQ+-owned spirits brand, Rhodium supports community nonprofits and political candidates.
Tom of Finland Vodka
This organic Finnish vodka pays joyful tribute to artist and gay icon Touko Laaksonen (aka Tom of Finland). Created by the duo behind Ron de Jeremy rum, Tom of Finland has a crisp, clean profile. For each bottle sold, the company donates a percentage of proceeds to the Tom of Finland Foundation, a nonprofit promoting tolerance and the preservation of erotic art.
Urban Growler Brewing
Deb Loch and Jill Pavlak opened Minnesota’s first woman-owned microbrewery in 2014, trading successful corporate careers to chase their passion for brewing. With a mission to bring people together through beer, Urban Growler is known for traditional brews like its CowBell Cream Ale, as well as its Plow to Pint series highlighting local ingredients and the farmers who grow them.