Graham Veysey is a guy who puts ideas into action. Back in 2014, the Cleveland resident was unable to get a glass of wine at a local neighborhood dive bar. Inspired by the craft beer movement, he googled wine in a can. He bought the domain name MANCAN and asked his childhood buddy Fisk Biggar what he thought of the idea.
The two partnered to develop a product that is now available in 17 states in national chains including Total Wine & More, BevMo! and Whole Foods, as well as Costco. Graham says the two worked to create a wine that was consistent season to season, sourcing grapes from California growers. Perfect for upcoming summer concert season, pool parties and barbecues, the wine is available in four varieties: A light and refreshing white, a rich, satisfying red, a subtle rose, and a bright and sparkling Fizz, my favorite. Each can is the equivalent of two glasses or half a bottle of wine and is a perfect accompaniment to that backyard burger or after work salad.
The cans feature Vesey’s dog Gracey and a 140-year old firehouse in Hingetown, part of Cleveland’s Ohio City neighborhood that Graham and his family call home. Along with his wife, neighbors, and others, the grassroots developer helped to convert the vacant firehouse into a vibrant mix-use building that features a coffee shop, a florist, and offices.
He also developed a nearby block into a dynamic pedestrian- and bike-friendly neighborhood known as Hingetown. In addition, Graham was instrumental in bringing bike sharing to Cleveland and was the project director for Ohio City Farm, an urban farm that spans six acres.
As if that’s not enough, Graham is known as a gifted raconteur and has won 4 Emmy awards. A consultant to the Aspen Institute, he manages the group’s partnership with Khan Academy and produces aspects of both the Aspen Ideas Festival and the Vanity Fair New Establishment Summit. As the founder of North Water Partners media company, he produces content for global brands, arts and cultural institutions, and political campaigns. He also serves on the bards of The Refugee Response, Cleveland Public Theatre, and the Bidwell Foundation.
Graham’s longtime childhood friend Fisk Biggar is a member of the founding team of BB’s Kitchen in Aspen, an Esquire Magazine pick in 2011 for one of Colorado’s best restaurants. While pursuing his MBA, Fisk served as Vice President for the Quintess Collection where he established revenue resources and strategic partnerships.
Biggar joined Vespey in 2015 and the pair’s side hustle quickly became a full-time endeavor with sales across the country. Fisk currently serves as President of MANCAN Wines.
The story behind MANCAN is a guy in a bar who wanted a glass of wine, his propensity for putting ideas into action, and a lifelong friendship that grew into a successful business partnership.
We’ll drink to that.
MANCAN is available in the Los Angeles market at Total Wine & More and BevMo! If you’re lucky enough to be in San Francisco, the wine can be delivered by Postmates!