The legacy of importing specialized liqueurs began with Erich Preiss, who brought his son Henry into the business in the early 70s. Henry founded Preiss Imports in 1987 and built it into an iconic spirits import and distribution company over the ensuing decades.
Now the third generation is represented by Nicole Preiss who cofounded HPS Epicurean with her father (a 42-year industry veteran) in 2012. In 2016, they Preiss family reacquired the rights to the name Preiss Imports. Today, the company continues to build a platform that provides brand-driven, iconic products to the U.S. marketplace.
Throughout her travels with Henry, Nicole brought a discerning eye for selecting artisan delicacies that demonstrate provenance, finessed production and the intrinsic versatility to galvanize mixologists, innovative chefs and creative home cooks.
The culinary collection is the first stop in the Preiss journey to advance the fusion of culinary arts with unique spirits and wine, and Nicole has the expertise and passion to make the gourmet division of HPS Epicurean/Preiss Imports a success.
“My love of the artisanal world began as a child surrounded by my family’s passion for the history and traditions behind every product sold by Preiss Imports, a company that was launched from an office in our home. Business was discussed at the dinner table; telephone calls came in from Europe at all hours. I was introduced to new cultures, exotic aromas and vibrant flavors when suppliers and their families would visit us in Ramona,” Nicole said. “Learning all aspects of the family business– from dusting displays to weekend accounting, has proved invaluable. I went on to earn a business degree and subsequently graduated from culinary school to prepare for the HPS partnership with my father.”
Nicole said the potential for gourmet selections continues to expand. Culinary fever is in full swing– the inundation of cooking shows and celebrity chefs, farm-to-table restaurants erupting everywhere, and mixology flourishing as a prestigious profession. Although the interest for international cuisine has grown, availability of exceptional global treasures lags behind.
“We are here to help with that. The response to HPS gourmet selections has been tremendous, bolstering our mission moving forward to seek new import opportunities and establish more innovative brand categories. I am truly honored to represent the 3rd generation of the Preiss family enterprise, and delighted to share the fruits of my labor here with you,” Nicole added.