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Vanport 1948’s rich spirits set the standard for high-quality and sustainability

Vanport 1948 Vodka promotional image

Retro but modern. That’s precisely what Vanport 1948 is going for, thanks to a callback to a historic time in the City of Portland’s history. Yes, Vanport elegantly honors the past, but it’s also forward-looking in design and flavor and through its exceptionally modern artwork on the label. It’s vodka, but delicious and with an incredible backstory, one that you’re going to want to read about no less.

Steeped in a rich history of culture, Vanport hearkens back to when the City of Portland was barely a twinkle in anyone’s eye. Specifically, as the name implies, Vanport. As the second largest city in Oregon back in 1948, it featured the largest housing development in the country, an offset of its mass production at the time and complement to its busy portland-area shipyards. Around the height of the war, earlier in 1944, about 40,000 people lived in Vanport, including up to 10,000 African Americans.

But on Memorial Day in 1948, the Columbia River flooded, pouring over a nearby dike and dumping about fifteen-foot swells downstream right into the city of Vanport. At least 15 people lost their lives, and over 18,000 residents were left homeless because of the disaster. The disaster significantly strained the residents and race relations in the area and further impacted an ongoing housing crisis amidst a rapidly rising local population.

Today, Vanport 1948 stands as a representation of that history, and also its exceptional vodka.

Taste the Spirit

A cataclysmic history: A remarkable future

The flooding of Vanport | full documentary | Oregon Experience

Born out of respect for those affected by the 1948 Vanport flood, the brand borrows from the strength of the original city, which eventually grew to become the heart of the City of Portland. The survivors gave birth to the current generation and those who have created this brand. Like a phoenix rising from the ashes, Vanport honors the passionate people “who seek a spirit of joy and celebration of life, happiness, and love of the City of Roses.”

The history may have been disastrous, but there’s a remarkable future ahead, both for the people of Portland and the Vanport 1948 brand. Integral to that is Vanport’s blend of spirits, all distilled within the City of Portland and to an unprecedented standard. At the forefront is Vanport’s Vodka, a high-quality, consistent, smooth, and delightful blend that instills the local spirit of Oregon and the City of Portland, including those from the original bustling Vanport hub.

It’s a testament to the community’s rebirth after such a tragic event, but most importantly, that the culture, spirit, and dedication of the people did not get washed away with the waters of the flood.

Setting the spirits standard for high-quality and sustainability

Vanport 1948 label art off bottle with vibrant colors.

Today, Vanport 1948 emphasizes sustainable delivery, working with a network of local distillers who take great pride in their craft. Bottled entirely in Portland and distributed by the country’s first eco-friendly distributor, you can enjoy the spirits guilt-free. Vanport has also prioritized environmental care in its operations, purchasing over 300,000 pounds of carbon offsets across projects from the local Oregon forest to Guatemala and South American nature hubs.

Quality is the utmost concern for the Vanport team and is the first and last tenet they honor. All spirits from the brand must have a strong body, exceptional taste, and a smooth palatable experience. Simple yet wonderfully-tasting that sets the bar high and stands far and above the competition.

We’ve tried it, and we assure you, it’s phenomenal.

The spirit of rising, indeed

Born of tragedy, inspiring greatness, and delivering an unmatched product are all staples of the Vanport 1948 brand, so much so that its claim to be “the spirit of rising” couldn’t be more accurate.

Like the people of Vanport, now integrated into the heart of Portland and directly responsible for the city’s founding and immense growth, this is a proud tale. It has its ups and downs, but it also offers a remarkable spark of light and hope, a lightning rod of innovation, just like the social innovation and success of the original community.

If you’re only here for a sip, give it a try. You won’t be disappointed. But maybe stick around a bit to learn about its past and future — Vanport 1948 symbolizes evolution and innovation.

Taste the Spirit

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Briley Kenney
Briley has been writing about consumer electronics and technology for over a decade. When he's not writing about deals for…
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