Summer is here and the “girls” want a good, refreshing drink on the rooftop! Co-Founder of Southern Edge Spirits Trina Scott and Brand Manager Latia Ashley are working diligently to provide a refreshing, yet strong beverage to serve women after a long week of playing shero to the world. It’s apparent that women are being asked for much more these days, including our opinions, thoughts, and expertise– for the betterment of humanity, says Trina Scott, “women are closing the gap in the liquor industry, also known as the “boys club.” Women are being recognized as powerful voices behind the scenes of this new liquor brand. Trina and Latia spoke with Sheen about their work with Southern Edge Spirits:

In what ways does Southern Edge stand out from other premium liquor brands?

Trina Scott: We did our research and actively listened to consumers. Countless experiments were done with various flavor combinations over the years. We found what was appealing across multiple demographics. We use first-rate ingredients to manufacture our products in a distillery that has exceptional quality assurance standards. Those things are reflected in the taste. We also have a passionate and talented team of experts who provides honest and valuable input about the products. If you believe in a product, it’s easier to sell to the consumer because they see the passion behind your product.

What is the message behind Southern Edge as a brand? 

Trina Scott: The reality that our products are finally on store shelves in areas of South Carolina and Florida AND are being sold online is a testament to our perseverance. When we worked so hard to turn “no’s” into “yeses” and when “you guys need to try something else” changed into “our organization is eager to be a part of what you guys are doing”, we took time to savor those moments. Our current slogan, “Taste the Moment” was inspired, to some extent, by our journey of getting our drinks to the public. No matter what background you’re from, we all have things we want to celebrate from birthdays to achieving many sought-after goals. Sometimes a moment is just making it through the work day! We would like our vodka and whiskey to be the drinks you go to when enjoying those moments, especially when you’ve sacrificed so much for that moment of relief.

Latia Ashley: The message of SE is perseverance, passion, and living in the moment. Oftentimes we get so caught up in making it happen that we neglect time to exhale and take advantage of the pleasures of “the moment ” without worry.

Southern Edge Spirits, Brand Ambassador Latia Ashley
Vic Supreme

How does Southern Edge appeal to multiple audiences with its product?

Latia Ashley: I come from music/entertainment, so I’d say having a good SE drink is like hearing good music! It crosses bounding and shatters invisible dividers that cause separation and forces you to simply enjoy “the moment” of tasting something like you’ve never had before. The 1 thing every human has in common are “moments” such as giving birth, graduations, weddings, grief, etc. We all experience similar emotions that are universal in those “moments”

How can Southern Edge products showcase versatility aside from cocktails?

Trina Scott: Our Salted Caramel Whiskey is a wonderful addition to food and drinks recipes. I’ve put it in coffee for a pleasant little kick, made salted caramel milkshakes with vanilla bean ice cream, and added it to pancake and waffle batter. A customer suggested soaking watermelon chunks in our Sweet Tea Vodka. I haven’t tried it yet, but it sounds like a refreshing poolside treat. We also have a non-alcoholic Passion mixer that we are working to bring to the market. It can be combined with any alcohol of your choosing but works as a drink on its own. You can also add the mixer to your smoothie.

What made you interested in the liquor industry?

Trina Scott: I have to say that it was my husband who piqued my interest. He kept wanting to market recipes that he had been trying out for years and encouraged me to dive into partnering with him. I was hesitant about it because I had my own separate career and I didn’t know much about alcohol. He would say, “You know what you know and we learn as we grow.” Our other businesses were taking up a lot of his time so my role and responsibilities began to grow with Southern Edge. As I began to gain knowledge (and still continue to), I find it very stimulating to expand my horizons beyond my comfort zone.

Southern Edge Sprits Sweet Tea Flavored Vodka & Salted Caramel Flavored Whiskey Gavin B. Photography

Being raised in South Carolina, how does it feel to now have your very own liquor for purchase in your hometown?

Trina: Having distribution in parts of our home state is quite a feeling because so much effort has been put into getting to this point. I can’t describe what it’s like to walk into a liquor store that is less than 5 miles away from where you live and to see your brand there. When a singer hears their song on the radio for the first time, they describe it as a surreal experience – I guess I have a similar feeling. First, you can’t believe it. Then it’s amazement and you take pictures on your phone to make sure that you’re not dreaming. What’s also funny is going into a store and overhearing customers talk about how they like your product and encouraging other customers to buy it. The local enthusiasm for Southern Edge is pretty cool because people want to support their own.

According to a Forbes article in 2018, the liquor industry is being run by women. Even though this is a male-dominated industry, women are taking over? From your standpoint, would you agree?

Trina: I think we’re closing the gap between us and men in the liquor industry also referred to as the “boys club”. Women are finally being recognized as powerful voices and we can no longer be denied access. Traditionally, I don’t think “hard” liquor was viewed as a marketable product to women and if any attempt was made to target women, it probably wasn’t done in a way that would appeal to us. Newsflash: A lot of women like liquor – dare I say, even love liquor. Wouldn’t it make sense that because women consume alcohol, we also should be vital parts of the decision-making processes in the alcohol industry? Our perspectives, experiences, and insight are immeasurable and cannot be approximated. We should be taken seriously as consumers and in c-suites. Who can articulate women’s preferences in alcoholic beverages better than other women? It makes total sense to me.

Where do you all see Southern Edge’s growth within the next 5 years? 

Latia Ashley: Definitely a house whole name and a company that provides employment opportunities and scholarships for the community. My amazing partners/Founders are HBCU graduates who have an undying love for giving back to our communities.

Where can Sheen readers purchase a bottle of the Brown Vodka, Salted & Caramel Whiskey? 

Latia Ashley: you can check our website, for a listing of all stores that carry our products. Also, you can purchase items from the website if we have not made it to your state as of yet. But we are On the way!! Follow us on social media @SouthernEdgeBeverages