A Journey in Gin
A Black American Story Told Through Distilled Spirits
Noire Expedition is an expression of how far one family has come. It’s a celebration of how much more we will accomplish.
Noire Expedition Gin helps shed light on our ancestors.
For many Black Americans, the path gets lost in the mists of time when tracing a family name. But we helped build this country, we fought its wars, we have always moved the needle.
Our ultimate dream is that whoever tastes Noire Expedition will take time to ask the elders in their family ‘who are we’ or ’what is our story?’ Dedicate some energy to start telling your family’s story now for those who come after you.
Take time to celebrate with a drink, for the journey both behind you and ahead of you is a long one.
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An American Story
Moses Godfrey was born about 1840. We can only begin to imagine what Moses day to day life would have been.
He was born into slavery. when he turned 25, he gained his freedom.
What he did from there was as mundane as it was miraculous. He worked hard, he owned land and he employed others. Monumental accomplishments against the backdrop of a legally-oppressive society.
Starting Something Special
The inspiration for Noire Expedition American Gin.
Moses fathered 7 children according to Census information. Somehow, he acquired the land on which he raised his family. By the 1910 Census, Moses Godfrey was listed as ’Employer.’ He was 70 years old.
He would have been a minority of the minority to be a Black land and business owner during the 19th and early 20th centuries.
During Reconstruction, Black Americans lived under ’Jim Crow.’ Moses' rights were under constant threat.
With this backdrop, Moses fathered the first members of his family to be registered to serve in the U.S. military. Jack and Lumpkin Godfrey both have World War I draft registration cards in the history books. The family would go on to have someone serving in the military in some way shape or form during every major American conflict.
Moses fathered Josh Godfrey who would move to Michigan and work for Ford Motor Company during the Great Migration. Black Americans numbering in the millions relocated to the northern and western portions of the United States. Josh was a moment in progress himself, being one of the first in the family to be able to read and write. He took his talents to Michigan, hoping to further progress his family’s opportunities.
The women contributions to the Godfrey family history are incredible. Retha, Ila, and Bessie Godfrey all lived under Moses’ roof at some point. Godfrey women at times have made the ultimate sacrifice. On more than one occasion an expecting mother was lost at or around the time of childbirth.
There are not a lot of documents illustrating actions of the women in the family, but what we can infer given the time they lived, along with birth and death certificates brings us to understand the gravity of their actions.
A celebration of Love.
The Inspiration for Noire Blanc American Gin
Loving vs. Virginia is a landmark civil rights case in the United States that had a profound impact on mixed-race individuals and couples. The case originated in the late 1950s when Richard Loving — a white man — and Mildred Jeter — a black woman — fell in love and decided to marry. However, their union was considered illegal under Virginia's Racial Integrity Act of 1924, which prohibited interracial marriages.
The Lovings were arrested and charged with violating the law. In 1967, the Supreme Court delivered a groundbreaking unanimous decision in favor of the Lovings.
The ruling held that laws banning interracial marriage were unconstitutional, as they violated the Fourteenth Amendment's Equal Protection Clause. The Loving vs. Virginia decision struck down all remaining anti-miscegenation laws in the United States, putting an end to legal barriers that had long stigmatized and marginalized mixed-race individuals and couples.
The decision recognized and affirmed the rights of mixed-race people to love, marry, and form families without facing legal discrimination. It dismantled a major barrier to interracial relationships, paving the way for greater acceptance and societal change.
In honor of this pivotal point in American History, we've released Noire Blanc American Gin. This unique gin not only celebrates the marriage of our founder, but also this ruling that not only laid the foundation for subsequent civil rights advancements but also challenged societal norms and prejudices.
Noire Blanc Gin is made with a botanical recipe that includes fresh, ripe pears, nutmeg and a bespoke blend of herbs and spices. It is deep and rich, and pairs perfectly with cranberry juice.
The Journey Continues...
The inspiration for Noire Vodka.
Vodka, often hailed as a neutral spirit, possesses a unique characteristic that makes it a versatile and beloved choice for cocktails. Its ability to blend seamlessly with a wide range of ingredients and flavors allows it to enhance and elevate various mixed drinks. This adaptability and harmonious blending quality can be seen as a perfect metaphor for diversity. Just as vodka embraces and complements diverse flavors in a cocktail, diversity celebrates and enriches our societies by blending different perspectives, cultures and backgrounds. Like vodka's neutrality, diversity fosters a sense of inclusivity and harmony, bringing together various elements to create a vibrant and united whole. It reminds us that our differences, when embraced and valued, can create a more vibrant and fulfilling collective experience.
Noire Vodka is made with a base of 100% Corn. We utilize our hybrid 125-gallon still, which includes a four-plate column that is six inches in diameter. Indirect gas heat provides a luxurious mouthfeel to the final distillate.
The result is a high-quality Vodka that can stand up to any national brand.