La Dolce Vita: A Contest

Given the sporadic nature of my postings and as such the sporadic traffic I enjoy, it’s always great when someone in the world reaches out to me after reading the blog.

It’s even more exciting when that person is the owner of a property in Barolo that they rent out to people like me and you.

And it’s even more exciting when for the simple act of becoming a Facebook fan of this property, you can get a chance for a free three night stay.  Yes, this is social networking at its finest.

Italy is my favorite country – I mean really, isn’t it everyone’s favorite?  In fact, I’ve been planning a two-month long villa retreat for next summer with the family, a one of a kind journey that will be cheaper than camp here in California but offer so much more than the 500th game of dodgeball, a rigged fishing trip to a fully stocked fake lake or the chance to make a comb sheath out of bits of leather and lanyard string (thanks for the memories, “Modern Family”)

So if you’re the gambling type who’d just as soon drop 100 quarters into a video poker machine, please ask lady luck to grant you an even better reward than a $5.00 surf and turf; a few nights in wine country paradise and a trip you’ll never forget.

Friend TorreBarolo NOW!  Everyone who becomes a fan of TorreBarolo between now and the end of January will be eligible for this free drawing.  Winner will be announced on February 1st.

And please remember my family only numbers four so you won’t even notice us as we come and go through the extra bedroom…

Published in: on January 25, 2010 at 10:24 am  Comments (1)  

SWM (Single Winedrinking Male) seeks SWF

With the success of websites like My Space and Facebook it’s probably no surprise that social networking sites for specific groups of people are popping up all over the digital landscape.

There’s Good Reads for book lovers, LinkedIn for job networking, Open Wine Consortium a B2B site for the wine industry and now a new one geared towards wine consumers has made its debut.  Called Cruvee (as in groovy? – I see no accent on the second “e”), the site is the brainchild of The Wine Spies and the ubiquitous Gary Vaynerchuk, who’s one more public appearance away from wrestling the “hardest working man in show business” title away from Bono.

Me, I’ve just been nominated for a Webby for most links in one blog paragraph (six).

My point is this.  I love the idea of a social networking site specifically for wine, one that pulls together all the components that are being focused on today (winery info & sales, message boards, wine ratings, etc.)  While some have mastered one or two of these none seems to have been able to truly build a strong community that captures the cultural scope of something like Facebook.

Why is this?

My hunch is that it’s too much of a niche’, that there’s only so many people who will visit and spend time on one site for hours at a time to discuss wine like they do with the more broad social networking sites.  I mean, I can poke my friends (who came up with that creepy verbiage), write on their wall, post up some brilliant clip from the Daily Show *and* talk about wine.  There’s no need to do the latter on another site.

And yet I do believe there is something here.  A few years ago I discovered “Meet Up” a nationwide group designed to bring people together (get this – in person – how quaint) with like minded interests.  Not only was I intrigued, but I contacted one of the largest wine drinking groups and arranged a private tasting with Ryan in NYC, figuring what better way to gain new customers than hosting a group of people who sought out others like them in the city where they lived.

Ryan flew out to New York and did a nice tasting with about 30 people.  Sales were minimal and I’m not sure anyone at that tasting bought more wine but I’m glad we did it.

There’s no more social beverage than wine and it’s clear that wine drinkers enjoy sharing their personal experiences with others.  So I’m wishing great success for Cruvee (however you say it) because the idea to bring us all together online with a common love for wine is something I’m all for.

And if the economy ever climbs out of the Marianas Trench it’s in right now, just remember I wrote about you early on, so don’t forget me when you have your first IPO.

Published in: on October 3, 2008 at 5:18 pm  Comments (2)