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Founder and Chief Distiller at Catoctin Creek Distillery on Women in Spirits

Becky Harris on whiskey and appealing to women.

Becky Harris is Founder and Chief Distiller at Catoctin Creek Distillery. In 2009, she and her husband, Scott Harris, combined their engineering and business backgrounds to build a distillery focused on creating the finest Virginia Rye Whisky from grain to glass. Her passion is creating award-winning rye whisky, unique gin expressions, and locally-sourced brandies of the highest quality, with an emphasis on local and organic sourcing of grain, fruit and herbs.

“When we started our company nine years ago, we focused on making spirits with amazing flavor, and telling the story of rye whisky in America. Rye whisky was a leading player in the story of American spirits and the birth of the cocktail. Our rye, perfect for both cocktails and sipping, is leading the rebirth of Virginia Rye made entirely from grain to glass.”

Harris is a large proponent of women as both entrepreneurs in the industry and consumers of spirits: “It is a great time to be in the spirits industry for entrepreneurial women. Women have held vital roles in the industry historically, but currently there is really a refreshing focus on the roles of women and people of color at all levels. Consumers are interested in new flavors and authentic stories. Be passionate about learning and tasting as much as you can – women are being recognized as one of the fastest growing groups of spirits buyers, and companies are looking for opportunities to appeal to women without condescension.”