First black-owned wine company in Loudoun County aims to please every “palette”

Virginia

LOUDOUN COUNTY, Va. (WDVM) — If you have ever been wine tasting, you most likely have experienced a drink that wasn’t so pleasing to your taste buds. Perhaps it was too bitter, too dry, or simply didn’t pair well with your meal. Now, a new wine company is aiming to change that.

Fifty Leven, a wine brand created by Loudoun resident Kindra Dionne, officially launched in October. The name, which is a Southern phrase for “plenty”, pays homage to Dionne’s native Richmond, VA roots.

Like a palette of paints, the collection has different types of wine and tastes to select from. The brand consists of five wines, designed to pair perfectly with any meal.

“Our culture, our history, our upbringing contributes to how we season and how we flavor our foods, and that usually helps to shape our own individual palates. Wine is the same way,” said Dionne.

The inspiration came when Dionne would attend events in the community, noting that many of those in attendance wouldn’t finish their glasses.

“Most of the time at networking events, they serve cheap table wine with not a whole lot of flavor. It doesn’t pair well with the appetizers that they set out,” she said.

Dionne set out to solve the problem, enlisting the help of a friend and Loudoun winemaker, Doug Fabbioli, to mentor her. New to the world of wine, Dionne spent hours doing research on the science of different palettes to create her Fifty Leven brand.

“The wines that you are going to experience are lower acid, they’re going to be softer in the tannin and composition in general, so you’re going to get a lot more of that flavor that’s going to accentuate the food,” said Dionne.

As if launching a company isn’t enough of an achievement, Fifty Leven is the first black-owned wine company in Loudoun County — and she hopes it won’t be the only one for long.

“At first I was intimidated by it, but then I celebrated. I’m going to open the door so that I won’t be the last,” said Dionne. “If you’re interested in doing something like this, there’s a pathway for you. I want to show people that it can be done.”

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