My community spotlight series takes a look at some of the interesting businesses and establishments that give New Rochelle its unique character and about which many residents may be unaware.

What do Grey Goose vodka, Jägermeister, Jacques Cardin brandy, Gekkeikan Sake, and Corazon de Agave all have in common? Aside from the obvious fact that they offer the makings of a pretty good party (if you enjoy a drink), they share another common trait: all were introduced to American consumers by the Sidney Frank Importing Company, based at 20 Cedar Street, right here in New Rochelle.

Founder Sidney Frank, a New Rochelle resident who passed away in January 2006, was a marketing genius, whose creative and entrepreneurial skills had an out-sized impact on the tastes and preferences of millions of people. He was also well-known for his philanthropy, which included, among many other things, the largest gift in Brown University’s history. Frank’s Foundation has had a local impact, too — our New Rochelle Skate Park on Fifth Avenue is named in Sidney Frank’s honor in recognition of an exceptionally generous contribution to its founding.

Sidney Frank Importing Company remains a privately-held, family-owned business today, still based in New Rochelle, and still conducting business and philanthropic activities in the spirit of its founder. You can read more at