As a toast to the new autumn season, BLACK ENTERPRISE would like to share an empowering conversation with the founder and CEO of La Fête Wine Co., Donae Burston. He dropped seasonal sipping tips, business knowledge, and receipts about his journey to becoming the world’s No.1 rosé wine brand.
As a Black-owned brand, La Fête has been a disruptor in the alcohol industry since its inception in 2021.
The world traveler is no stranger to the wine industry, having worked with iconic luxury brands for over 15 years. After one conversation, we captured the essence of Burston’s ongoing quest to bridge the gap between Black buyers, winemakers, decision-makers, and restaurateurs.
Leveraging his connections, Burston witnessed firsthand just how quintessential the multicultural consumer is to the industry.
“When you get into the alcohol business, it is extremely challenging when you don’t have a celebrity as the face of the brand. Certainly we caught a lot of flack in the beginning,” Burston told BE.
“Now some other brands have caught onto our messaging, and they’re starting to see that the value and the growth of the category is really outside of the cliche,” he continued.
“Immerse yourself in every aspect of the business,” Burston advised, crediting his thirst for knowledge despite facing the challenges of inviting people of color, an audience often overlooked in the wine industry and the conversation.
I tried the wine!
Burston suggested that we warm up our chilly nights with his rosé, its delicate sweetness and freshness reminiscent of a sunset on a beach. The liquid gold paired perfectly with a hearty grilled salmon meal. The exquisite La Fête Blanc danced on my palate. Its vibrant, fruity flavors transported me to the dance floor as if I were on a honeymoon island.
Burston said that La Fête is where the party meets approachable luxury. “You can consume it however you want.”
La Fête is home wherever you are.
Burston is the 2023 Breakthru Tastemaker, leading a legacy for his wine brand La Fête du Rosé by creating an ecosystem for Black and Brown wine founders.
“Knowing that I have to start to let go and bring on a team that is far more better than I am at things has been a game changer,” Burston explained. “Instead of trying to do everything not well, we’re going to do things amazingly well by bringing in the talent.”
The movement continues in the wake of DEI casualties despite the slowing down of business connections with major retailers. Burston started strong with generous donations to The Roots Fund and continues to support organizations that expose underrepresented youth to the world via travel. All Abroad Inc. was their first beneficiary and partner.
In a continuous effort to connect the Black community with wine, La Fête Wine Company is currently sponsoring The Roots Fund’s HBCU Wine Tour in partnership with Michael Lavelle Wines.
“For La Fête, we need to be where that consumer is,” Burston said. He contemplated just how far and wide his brand continues to go.
“Here, it is brand validation and brand association. It’s about brand discovery in other places and bringing a piece of home with you.”
Cheers to that!
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