Moses Austin, father of Stephen F. Austin, was given permission by the Mexican government in the form of a land grant to settle what is now Texas. Thus, he became the first of the Texas Empresarios. The term Empresario, Spanish for entrepreneur, has come to represent the pioneering spirit of generations of Texans.
Paula Angerstein, Gary Kelleher, Tom Nall, and Pepe Zevada, Empresarios of the Texas Spirits Industry, didn’t ask for permission before they made history by merging their three companies to create Empresario LLC, the first Texas company to create, brand, distill, import, and market spirits. Empresario’s award-winning portfolio currently includes seven tequilas, four liqueurs, and a line of all natural cocktail mixers, with more to come!
Paula Angerstein, south Texas farm girl and UT graduate, worked in England where she found herself vacationing in Italy as often as possible. Once back home in Texas, she began making homemade Limoncello for her friends. Encouraged by them, she became the first woman and second person to be...more
Gary Kelleher became the third person licensed to distill in Texas in 2006 and brought Dripping Springs Texas Vodka to market in 2007. Dripping Springs Texas Vodka is the first and only American vodka to win the prestigious Vodka Purity Trophy given at the International Wine and Spirits...more
All Tom Nall ever wanted to be was a cowboy. Along the way, he spent over three decades building the now legendary brand Wick Fowler’s Two Alarm Chili Kits, which are sold nationwide. He retired from the chili business on a Friday in 2009 and by Monday had started a new venture. Tom and his...more
After 35 years traveling the world as an executive in the spirits industry, representing brands such as Jack Daniel's and Kahlua in Europe and South America, José “Pepe” Zevada retired to Austin, Texas. However, it did not take him long to get back in the game and he quickly launched Pepe Zevada...more