High Heels and Cornfields
Whiskey and a cigar. It’s a man thing, right? WRONG.
Whiskey has never been the exclusive preserve of men and here at Doc Brown Farm & Distillers we are breaking down that perception. Two of our founders are bold boss ladies and our Effie Jewel bourbon is dedicated to all women who enjoy their whiskey. Whether you like it mixed in a cocktail, straight, with a cigar or on its own, never let anybody tell you that whiskey is a man’s drink.
The boss ladies of bourbon
Effie Jewel is inspired by all the women who have worked in the liquor industry – past, present and future. If you go way back into the depths of time, it was women who made the first beer in ancient Sumeria. In thanks, the Sumerians paid homage to Ninkasi, the goddess of brewing.
Throughout history, women have made, distributed and consumed alcohol. We helped keep the whiskey industry going during Prohibition, running bootlegging operations and speakeasies shoulder to shoulder with men.
One boss lady we’re particularly enthralled by is Gertrude ‘Cleo’ Lythgoe – AKA The Queen of the Bahamas. Originally from Ohio, she worked for a liquor importer in New York before Prohibition. When the bill came in, she used her contacts to set up a business empire from Nassau, shipping the finest scotch across the Atlantic to be savored by women and men all over the United States.
Lythgoe was nicknamed ‘Cleo’ due to her resemblance to Cleopatra and she ruled her whiskey empire with vision, strength and ingenuity. If a man dared to threaten her, he’d find himself staring down the barrel of her pistol. With steel and charm, Cleo Lythgoe had an air of mystery about her we find intriguing to this day.
You can find out more about Cleo Lythgoe here, and discover a whole array of boss ladies in the distilling industry with the book Whiskey Women by Fred Minnick. Fascinating reading.