Skip to main content

Christine Cooney, French American Spirits Importer Gets Knighted

Christine Cooney, cofounder and CEO of Heavenly Spirits Imports, specializing in the sales and showcasing of French spirits in the United States, was made a knight of the Ordre du Mérite Agricole.

French native, Christine proudly received the green medal (known as Le Poireau/the leek) for its vibrant color. The prestigious accolade, bestowed by the Minister of Agriculture in Paris since 1883 honors exceptional contributions to agriculture, forestry, and gastronomy. Mustafa Soykurt, Consul General of France in Boston, had the honor of presenting this esteemed award during a ceremony at the city’s French Library.

The event took place amid a backdrop of celebration, as Christine and her husband and business partner, Daniel, hosted a full portfolio tasting to mark the 15th anniversary of their company.

In a heartfelt acceptance speech delivered in both French and English, Christine reflected on her journey with spirits, which began at the age of 7 under the guidance of her paternal grandfather, Amedee Foubert. Foubert, a farmer, and wine merchant in the Charente-Maritime department of southwest France, initiated her palate with brandy distilled from plums from his orchard. Despite her initial distaste her grandfather introduced her to another offering—an amber liquid he called Armagnac. To her surprise, she found it immensely appealing.

This early experience fostered a lasting connection to spirits for Christine. She and her husband undertook the restoration of her family’s 120-acre farm in France following the passing of her grandfather and father. Since 2008, she has distinguished herself as a leading importer of award-winning French spirits in the United States. There are 38 states where the company is currently selling its carefully curated catalog of Armagnac, Calvados, Cognac, absinthe, gin, rum, vodka, whisky, vermouth, and various liqueurs and apéritifs.

“Sometimes, it can be difficult to carve out a little spot on the shelf for our spirits in a market that is already flooded by the bigger, industrial brands,” Christine Cooney told France-Amérique. “But we connect with American consumers who are truly interested in the authentic stories behind our brands. France started distilling 700 years ago and has an unsurpassed, global reputation for producing top-notch spirits. The ‘made in France’ label sells, and discerning consumers here know that.”

Heavenly Spirits has been the number-one importer of Armagnac (in volume) in the United States for the past 14 years. And in 2017 Christine and Daniel Cooney were both inducted into the Compagnie des Mousquetaires d’Armagnac on the referral of a few of their Armagnac producers, for their promotion of French art de vivre and gastronomy,

Bringing my French culture and passion for all things related to food, wines, spirits, and gastronomy to the United States has been a life-defining experience,” says Christine. “I guess it’s what makes me a true French-American!”

The post Christine Cooney, French American Spirits Importer Gets Knighted appeared first on Chilled Magazine.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published.