In front of a raucous, and somewhat lubricated crowd, the manager and patrons of Cheyenne’s Four Winds Bar poured out dozens of bottles of Stolichnaya Vodka as a way to protest the Russian invasion of Ukraine.
Kiona Shepard, the manager of the Four Winds, began dumping the “Stoli” vodka in the parking lot with plenty of help from patrons of the popular establishment.
As the group emptied the bottles to chants of “We support Ukraine” and other less family-friendly cries, many drivers along Pershing Boulevard honked their horns in support.
J.J. Moran, owner of the Four Winds, said the decision to dump the Russian vodka and to quit selling it altogether was his way of standing up to the “aggression of Russia.”
“You just feel like there’s nothing you can do when you see these poor people in Ukraine,” Moran said. “On the news, you see husbands walking their families to the border and then they go back to fight for their country — maybe never to see their families again.”
“This is our personal sanction,” he said. “This is how we can make a difference.”
Moran said Stoli is Russia’s most popular exported vodka and if every bar in the city, state and nation refused to serve it, it would send a powerful message.
“We’ll hit them right in their pocketbook,’ he said.
In the addition to the removal of the Stoli product, Shepard placed signs throughout the establishment that said “In Support of Ukraine, We Don’t Serve Russian Vodka.”
Further, Moran said the bar will no longer serve White Russians or Moscow Mules. The concoctions will still be made, he said, but they will name them something else.
Moran said he was thinking about mixing a non-Russian vodka with Fireball whisky and calling it a Putin Punch.
“Their economy isn’t the best right now,” Moran added. “Hopefully we can all stick together and hit them where it hurts.”