Bronzeville Winery to open on Chicago's South Side: 'More than just a restaurant'

"This goes out to the banks out there, to the finance companies. You need to finance Black and brown entrepreneurs," Chicago Mayor Lori Lightfoot said.

It was a powerful message from the mayor and the owner of a brand new South Side winery, encouraging banks to put their money where their mouths are.


Wednesday was the groundbreaking of Bronzeville Winery. The new Black-owned business is being made possible by a grant from the city to help minorities launch their own businesses.

The winery received a $250,000 grant to make it happen. But the owner, Cecilia Cuff, and Mayor Lightfoot, used a press conference at the groundbreaking to call for businesses to invest in the Black community, saying people need more access to capital and not just one-and-done programs to create businesses like this one.

"I think for us, Bronzeville Winery is more than just a restaurant. We'll have an incredible wine list... and brunch on Sundays... and we will be here for a community space," Cuff said. "But we are committed to developing the next generation of entrepreneurs."

The winery is set to open later this summer.