Hollywood (Bowl) and Vine

PIC-0078For those that know me, my taste in current, popular music is a bit anachronistic, with most of my iPod selections being created somewhere in the century between 1880-1980.  Sure there are exceptions, I’ve liked much of what Coldplay has done, have been known to download a dance track (see: Britney, Beyonce, Cristina) here and there and even attended a KCRW concert last year featuring The Shins and Lily Allen, an artist I somehow came into contact with and liked *before* the show.

This all said, most new music I buy and listen to these days still arrives via artists who made their first records during the time period above (see:  Springsteen, Costello et. al).

So I’ll admit to no advance excitement when I was invited to the Hollywood Bowl this past Sunday to see a British singer named Adele.  My desire to go stood solely in the fact that I love the venue, especially when I get to enjoy it within the confines of the cozy boxes that round the front section.  It’s always a great excuse to pack up the picnic basket with goodies (see:  cheese, bread, almonds, salads, desserts) and head outside to listen to music under the stars.

But my favorite part of being in the boxes is sneaking peaks at people’s wine selections (I do this at restaurants too but for some reason it feels more like a competition at the Bowl).  Within sight of my corrective lenses were familiar labels like Williams-Seylem, Longoria, Guigal, Cakebread.  In my own box we had a Chateauneuf Du Pape,  a 2004 Cab and a (shameless plug) Six Degrees.  All complimented the food and atmosphere perfectly.

The highlight of the night though was the singer herself, a 21 year old with a voice that carried through the Bowl and lifted us up.  Surely there were others like me, there with a season ticket in hand, who come out regardless of the performer, be it the LA Phil or David Byrne.  So no doubt there were many among us who had never heard of Adele.

I’ll venture to guess though that more than a few people (myself included) came home and downloaded her amazing album 19 and are listening to it right now, as I am.  Every once in awhile, as fellow blogger Marc Goldsmith often notes, music has the ability to fly us places we thought we’d never go.  To feel something the dictionary can’t help us to describe.

Do yourself a favor and download the track, Hometown Glory.  If it doesn’t move you to tears, I’d check your pulse.

You might be dead.

Published in: on July 1, 2009 at 4:28 pm  Leave a Comment  

Whatever Works

woodyallenWoody Allen’s 40th film as a writer/director has just been released,  the wine equivalent of producing 40 vintages in a row, from 1969-2009.

Whether with movies or wine, not all are going to be great, some might even be downright bad.

And yet, to paraphrase Woody at the end of his masterpiece, Annie Hall, as with love, we keep coming back again and again because we need the experience to survive.

We have a longstanding opening night Woody ritual with another couple that dates back at least as far as Manhattan Murder Mystery (1993).  And over the years I’ve been very forgiving of his films, finding his work on the worst day better than the majority toiling away in Hollywood.  Up until Friday night.

To put it in perspective, I’ve haven’t squirmed this much in my seat since my kindergarten graduation (1971).

On the surface it should have been a winner.  Woody being channeled by another comedic favorite of mine, Larry David.  Unfortunately the set up is contrived, the dialogue (always a plus in Woody’s films) feels stilted, forced and unbelievable and there’s nothing to engage us, not even a return to the streets of New York, something that in many past films has made me question why I ever left the city for California.

Still the movie did good business in select cities, proving there are others like me who give him the benefit of the doubt because he has entertained us so much in the past.  It also proves that critics play little if no role in people paying money to see his films.  It’s this way with wine sometimes, and for the better.

Some filmmakers and winemakers deserve our time and money because they are good at what they do.  And just as a story can be flawed for many reasons, so too can a wine in a given vintage.  Which is not to say that critics do not have their place in the equation.

But in the end, we as consumers have to make our own choices, if only for the chance to see another Manhattan or drink another 1995 Rubicon (a wine produced, perhaps appropriately by another director responsible for some of the best and not so best movies of all time).

Being creative for a living is hard, and if you’re lucky you’ll have more hits than misses.  But the goal, I think, is to be critic proof, that is to say forge such a strong bond with your audience that they’ll force you to keep trying to produce another masterpiece year after year, even if you fall short sometimes.

Because in wine, movies and love, “…we just need the eggs.”

Published in: on June 22, 2009 at 1:17 pm  Comments (2)  

Party (Down)

RhodiumfingerprintWeddingBandsLet me state for the record that I am the most happily married man I know.

So why do I find myself cursing every time I sift through the Weddings Page in the Sunday Times?  Is it because the people who choose to acknowledge their nuptials there fall into very specific catergories:

1.  Ivy League Educated
2. Doctors, Lawyers, Hedge Funders or conversely, school teachers, museum curators, non-profiteers
3. Parents with important jobs (past or present)

Or is it because they are the same type of people to send with their holiday card a recounting of the past year’s successes like we – a.) care or b.) actually believe that anyone’s life could be so perfect.

I’ve often fanticized about sending our holiday card with a note saying something along the lines of:

“Eric and Linda did the best they could in 2009, what with the boys lagging so far behind in their reading skills, their lack of interest in anything besides video games, soda and Sugar Frosted Flakes and their basketball teams, which finished a combined 2-26 for the year.  Linda works long hours with little praise while Eric continues to beat himself up for not making more of his Fine Arts degree.”

But in the (un)real world, life for those getting married could not be better, with happy couples running down the aisle, albeit trying to be mindful of upsetting their poor friends by throwing subdued and understated receptions, ones that ironically cost more than the previously traditional shindig at Bacara.

Wedding food now, formerly caviar and truffle encrusted Kobe beef has now been recessioned to look like mini cheeseburgers and slumdog desserts like pie and cupcakes.  Said food is “passed from person to person”, while thirsty guests will have to pour their own wine, you know, like actual life.

But these same people, hoping to present such an austere picture for their guests can’t seem to contain themselves in telling reporters that such charades break the bank as well.  Don’t feel sorry for us they’ll whisper, we just want our friends to think we’re just like them.

My news flash to these insufferable souls is this, authenticity can’t be faked by some creative caterer or moonlighting production designer.  If you want to have a down home backyard wedding, have it at *your* backyard, with its overgrown grass and undergrown hillside (wait, that’s my backyard).  If cheeseburgers are what you’re after, have the mobile In-n-Out Truck showup in your driveway.  You get the idea…

Even though my wedding was in a magical setting at a fancy hotel with hundreds of guests in the bang-bang late 90’s, I can’t tell you anything about the food, the wine or the conversation.  There were only two people in the room that day – and I didn’t care if anyone else knew it or not.  That’s authentic.

Published in: on June 17, 2009 at 2:43 pm  Leave a Comment  

If You Build it…

20050301ap_trv_field_dreamsPJ01_580Many people’s favorite moment in the movie, Sideways (mine included), is the scene in which Miles gets word that his book has been rejected by the publisher he was hoping would champion it, thus relegating him to further anonymous status, something that goes along with all his other disappointments.

And while most people remember this scene for his chug of the spit bucket – hilarious and memorable  –  my take away was more cerebral.  That he receives this soul crushing news at a pompous, over the top Disneyland-esque winery, truly illustrates everything that is bad about the wine business in his eyes (read: that it’s successful as he fails).

His book, dense, quasi-meaningful and no doubt esoteric, mirrors the way he likes his wines.  So while the world thinks they are enjoying themselves drinking candy-like vino and reading Dan Brown, he is the true artiste among them.

I thought about this on Saturday, when I was in Napa attending the wedding of Linda’s first cousin, held at Viansa Winery in Sonoma.  That the property is beautiful goes without saying for those that have been there.  That it’s a charming place to  vow everlasting love is irrefutable.  But it was also an example of winery as sales destination.

And the place was PACKED.

We drove up for the rehearsal on Friday to a full parking lot of cars, two big buses and several limos.  Though the fact that the winery is one of the first properties you come upon as you drive from the 101 certainly plays a role, there must be some talented people working in the PR and marketing departments to gather such a crowd on a late afternoon weekday – even a Friday.

The amazing courtyard leads towards the doors to the winery building itself, a sort of antechamber that was pouring some wine.  But the real heart of Viansa is the upstairs tasting room, a bright, high-ceilinged, Wonka-like market selling everything from well, it just sold everything.  Jellies, salad dressings, meat marinades, pie fillings, cold sandwiches, hot sandwiches, sodas, juices, cheese, etc. times infinity.

In short just the kind of place that Miles would hate.  And normally I might too.

But in looking around, all I could see were happy customers.  Happy paying customers.  They bought the jelly, they sampled the wine and from the looks of the boxes they carried out, they loved it too.

The wedding the next day was wonderful, without a hitch from the attentive Viansa staff.   Great food, good wine (I liked the whites better than the reds) but if it was me looking back on my nuptials at the winery, I’d have deemed it an unqualified success.

And it furthered the simple notion that people want to be entertained, which is why theatre goers tend to give every musical they see a standing ovation, why the average LA sports fan will even feel good after watching the Clippers play. It’s all about the experience.

Yes, many people visit Napa to luxuriate in the famed labels that are produced there, love to be wowed by big scores and fancy language that describes the latest vintages, but in this economy, the fact that a “Big Box” like Viansa keeps packing them in, is, in my mind, good news for smaller wineries like us.  For some (not all) of these wine drinkers will take their positive experience and turn that into a love of wine that will eventually lead them to us.

So go ahead, focus group loving, flow chart reading, mass wine producing shops.

If you build it, they will come.

Published in: on June 8, 2009 at 10:34 am  Comments (1)  

Rich Man, Pour Man

229051346_8251b9a91dMemorable dining experiences can usually be attributed to several factors, great company, amazing food and wine, or something intangible that makes the night unforgettable.  But when you get all three rolled into one, well, I have one word to describe it…magic.

I turned 44 yesterday and while not a milestone birthday for those who keep score, I did decide to go out to dinner with very close friends in Venice (aka Hipsterville, USA).  Ah, to be the aging father of two with an 8:00pm reservation on a Thursday night…

We dined at Gjelina, a dining establishment so trendy the need for a sign outside the door is rendered moot.  And given the off-spelling of the name (not to mention its unpronouncability), I can only assume the owner’s intentions were to force older people like me to navigate the world wide interweb, where we’d no doubt stumble with the odd letter arrangement and never even find the website, leaving only the beautiful and young to part with their spare recessionary change.

Lucky for me the guy who made our reservation is 34.  Had they known he was also bringing three 40-somethings, lets just say we’d still be waiting for a table right now some 12 hours later.

For all its velvet rope posturing, Gjelina is a dark paneled, small plates cornicopia of culinary wonder, from the Mozza-esque pizzas to the garlicky broccoli, the salt and pepper frites to a spinach salad so amazing I squirreled away a piece of the ruffage into Linda’s purse and have since planted it in my backyard (keep you posted).

The wine list is eclectic and reasonable, from the sparkling Vouvray we started the evening off with to the light but flavorful Burgundy we enjoyed through most of the meal.

The viticultural highlight of the night though was a half-bottle of 1999 Chateau d’Yquem brought by my partner and noted Bon Vivant, and was the perfect ending to an up till then perfect evening.

Our waiter, an impossibly good looking Adrian Grenier look alike, brought the bottle to the table with four dessert glasses and a smile on his face.  He recounted to us how excited everyone behind the bar was at this bottle and how the owner/sommelier would love to try some.

Now it’s good form, I believe, to share a special wine you’ve brought to a restaurant with either the chief wine geek or even ones server, but it’s usually something the customer initiates, not the other way around.  I didn’t give it much thought at the time, but of course we were happy to oblige.

“Adrian” comes back with another dessert glass and proceeds to pour himself a FULL glass – this mind you from our HALF bottle.  I didn’t say anything – no one did – but as soon as he thanked us and floated away we all looked at each other as if to say, “did you just see that?”  We were shocked – but in a friendly, incredulous way.

He returned to let us know that our corkage fee and dessert charges were waved because of our nice gesture.

Yeah, like, no shit, I’d gladly cut $30.00 off a bill to drink $80.00 worth of wine too…

In the establishment’s defense the owner did come over (with plenty of d’Yquem left in his glass) to thank us personally for sharing our bottle with him and frankly if the food wasn’t so spectacular and I didn’t plan on reminding him of who I am when I call to make another reservation with the expectation of a red carpet being rolled out for us next time, I might have railed more against the gall, whether knowing or not, to take so much of a customer’s wine.

But the restaurant is a HIGHLY RECOMMENDED destination.

One last note about the d’Yquem, specifically for the wine’s importer Liquid Link.  This is the sticker they’ve placed on the back of the bottle, “Liquid Link, the Wine Source imports French Bordeaux.  The Aromas and flavors of this wine are Bordeaux’s Magic.  Enjoy!”

I understand the excitement of being able to import one of the oldest, most prestigious wine brands the world has ever known and maybe I’m being presumptuous here, but it’s not as if you’re selling a wine like this at Ralph’s.  Thus the cheesy salesmenship on a wine as historic as d’Yquem makes them look as if they don’t know what they’re doing…

Am I being douchy here???

Published in: on May 29, 2009 at 9:34 am  Comments (6)  

The Battle Loyal

One cannot turn on the news, read a paper, or tool around the internet without coming across some dire account of the country’s financial meltdown.  And to be sure, whereas I’m a firm cynic when it comes to the information the media sends our way (if it bleeds, it leads), this crisis is real and it’s hurting all but those for whom money is no object – which reminds me of a great anecdotal story…

An old friend, and by old I mean, I knew him a long time ago but have not seen or heard from him in years, once attended a play his brother was in and spied Steven Spielberg in the audience.  Being an aspiring filmmaker he approached the famed director who was friendly and cordial and they began chatting.  During the conversation Spielberg’s then wife, Amy Irving (that dates this story, huh?) came over and asked her husband for some money to buy a drink.

The director searched his pockets for his wallet, which he had obviously left behind.  But in that little mini pocket in his jeans – what is that pocket really for anyway – he found, crumpled and showing signs of a washing or two, a fifty dollar bill.

It perfectly illustrates those that have to think about money and those that don’t.

My bigger point is addressed in a recent New York Magazine article that describes how the downturn in the economy is affecting NYC’s fancy eateries, best exemplified by empty tables, easier than ever to get reservations or in the worst case, closings and bankruptcy filings.

Sirio Maccioni, the famed restauranteur has been sending messages to his regular customers, hoping they’ll find a night to come in, something they’ve been neglecting as their net worth has presumably plummeted.

We’ve felt this one level beyond Le Cirque’s as less diners for them mean less wine sales, which in turn means our distributors are buying less wine from us (note: we do not sell our wines in Le Cirque, I was just illustrating the point).

But before the media deems all extravagent spending a thing of the past, I’d argue that it’s not the overspending that has hurt us all, but rather the excess on things that did not warrant such large outlays.

Qualifying for a mortgage on a house you can’t afford as opposed to say, having a meal at LeCirque you will remember all your life – and I know this firsthand.  Wasting $50.00 on a bottle of mediocre wine, as opposed to buying a 2005 Bordeaux for $600, the year of your child’s birth that you’ll open with them on their 21st birthday.

Some things are worth the money and people like Maccioni has worked his life to create a one of kind dining experience for all who walk through the door of one of his restaurants.  Many a winemaker has poured their souls into the bottle and that is sometimes reasonably reflected in the price tag.

Yes, things are bad.  They really are.  And you can get a lot of enjoyment in life without spending even one dollar.

But if you are going to reach into your wallet, I say be loyal to those who have come through for you in the past, those who have enhanced your life in ways you couldn’t do for yourself, that hotel, that special restaurant, that wine.

For if we don’t, when the economy finds some stability again – and it will (I’m also an optimist) – those people may have already closed up shop.  And that would be a shame…

Published in: on May 20, 2009 at 12:51 pm  Leave a Comment  

We the Jury

Even before getting into the wine business I spent a lot of time in Napa (my wife’s from Marin) and consistently commented how I never, ever saw a CHP or Police cruiser along Highway 29, the main road that flows into Napa and its surrounding burgs.

The observation was a simple one, wouldn’t/couldn’t the men in their black & whites cruise up and down the road, pulling over people who had been drinking and fill up their quota of tickets in about an hour each day, then go home to be with their kids?

Naturally, the conspiracy theorist in me was sure this practice was not implemented was because it’d be bad for business.  Start arresting the paying customers for driving under the influence and well, as traffic increased in court, it would decrease in tasting rooms.

Jury Selection

This was on my mind again when becoming part of the criminal justice system after being called for jury duty last week here in LA.  I can tell you the process, having never served, is about what you’d expect, a motley collection of prospective jurors (your humble blogger included) gathering for the right of passage know as civic duty.  All the usual suspects were there, the green carded citizen for whom English is probably not even their third language, the hot shot businessman who spends the entire time in the jury selection room wheeling and dealing in an otherwise silent room in full view of the sign which reads, “Please respect your fellow jurors and use your cellphones outside.”

You didn’t hear this from me but if you own Apple stock, SELL.

And of course, the person for whom jury duty is such an inconvenience that they’ll say just about anything to get out of service.  Give them a reason to claim an exemption, and they’ll try and squeeze through any hole.  Financial – my husband and I just lost our jobs.  Caring for someone else from 8am-5pm – I’m home schooling my kids and my 80-year old mother.  Prejudice about the case – what’s the charge again, I’m sure I’m for it.

Someone even claimed to know the defendant was guilty because, “he wouldn’t have been arrested if he wasn’t.” To which the judge replied, do you feel that way for all crimes – murder, assault, rape – if they’ve been accused, are they guilty?  “You have a point, but I think this guy is guilty.”

Word to all – except that waste of human space – pray you are never sitting in the defendant’s chair – these are your peers, people…

At some point during the jury selection I realized the case was a DUI and although I wanted to serve, figured either the defense or state would not want someone in the alcohol biz to be helping decide the case.

Turns out they liked me, they really liked me!!!

The Trial

According to the facts, the defendant was stopped at 2:30 am on the 101 Freeway after CHP noticed him straddling the lanes.  He did okay on his FST’s (field sobriety tests for you layman) but not good enough that he wasn’t arrested and brought in to take a breath test.  The test, administered an hour later registered a .13 twice and the accused was booked on suspicion of DUI and driving with a BA level above .08.

The state called two witnesses, the CHP officer and a criminologist who explained FST’s, absorbtion rates, accuracy of ECIR machine tests, etc.  All straightforward testimony, all believable.  The state called one witness, a hired gun (paid $2500 for an hour’s work – having never met the defendant and only looking at the police report – who testified that based on  the FST report, the defendant probably had a BAC level of .04-.06, making him then innocent of the first charge of DUI.

Two days of testimony later we go into the room.

The Deliberation

After being selected as the foreman (no doubt for my boyish good looks and raffish charm) we discussed the case for about an hour before I called a hands up vote that came up unanimously, GUILTY on both counts.

The Aftermath

I followed the judge’s instructions to not discuss the case, visit the scene of the crime or do any investigating on my own via the internet but after getting back from court on Thursday, I immediately went to Facebook and searched the guilty parties name.   He came up first on the list – on a public page no less – and I kid you not, this can’t be made up – in every photo the person had on their page, there is a drink in their hand – even one with them passed out on the floor with a proud comment by them describing the scene.

First I laughed, not only at how dumb this person is (have fun trying to get a job with your DUI conviction and your obvious alcohol problem, but also because I then knew we did the right thing.

But that humor was quickly replaced by anger, that this person flaunts their stupidity in the rest of our faces, as if to say, the law doesn’t apply to me – and that the day I kill someone you love, maybe, but a small maybe, I’ll learn my lesson.

So now I’m rethinking the merits of letting people drive up in Napa (if in fact they are lenient about allowing people to drive after hitting the wineries).  But even so, we as individuals have to take responsibility for our actions on the road when we’ve had even one drink.

And when we get our long hoped for tasting room, I’m going to make deals with limo companies, taxis and our guests, giving them discounts for *not* driving after tasting our wines.

It’ll be money well lost…

Published in: on May 11, 2009 at 8:37 am  Comments (1)  

Jury Duty

Loyal Daddy Winebucks Readers,

12-angry-menYes, I’ve been remiss in posting but with good reason.  Call it civic duty, call it following in the footsteps of the Founding Father’s, call it sitting around for eight hours switiching buildings, from jury assembly to courtroom having to pass through metal detectors each time.

But whatever you choose to call it, I’ve got Jury Duty.  I’ve not yet been put on a case yet, but I’m sensing I will be on a jury by this morning.  If I’m right, I should have some interesting insight for the blog come next week.

Will the defendent please rise?

Published in: on May 5, 2009 at 9:16 am  Leave a Comment  

Blogging for Dollars

bikevig01I’m finding myself nostalgic once again for the Rockwellian days of my youth, you know those golden times when the average 10-year old had to pay for the things they wanted out of their paper route money, or more amazingly that many ten year old’s like me were actually working…

Today, it’s hardly simple.  I cannot even get my kids to keep their own rooms clean for more than four days at a time, even for compensation.  Presumably, they’re conserving their energy for their stated trip(s) to the NHL by 18 – my offspring of modest goals.  Never mind the fact that neither can skate yet…

We’ve long since become a nation (world?) of convenience seekers, those for whom corners need to be cut, the least amount of work put in, all though with the expectations of large gain.

Case in point, another excellent post by Steve Heimoff – consistently in my opinion the best wine blogger out there.  If content is king in this internet age, the guy needs a crown and velvet cape – who wrote today about a WSJ story unearthing the fact that some bloggers out there are basically paid shills in the guise of simple, stay at home moms, et. al,  just looking to dispense some maternal wisdom for those who can’t figure things out for themselves.

This prompted Steve to ponder the idea of a wine blogger’s seal of authenticity, some public declaration that the wine they receive to review  comes unencumbered with something akin to a few $20’s affixed to the bottle with a rubber band.  And it’s hard to disagree with this logic.

But one point missed in Steve’s piece is that I think the onus most importantly falls upon the winery who might send out their wine to a blogger (with or without bribe), knowing full well that anything said may be used against them in the court of public opinion.  For if it’s one thing the blogosphere has taught us is that there is no transparency – at least in the same way we all hope/wish it still exists for print journalism.

I think we can all agree that paying someone to write nice things about your product is something for The Ethicist to tackle from a moralistic standpoint.  But again, the blogger who accepts that wine, car, trip, etc, with strings attached is only being enabled by those companies willing to take the chance at having their practices exposed.  If no one finds out, well, no one finds out.

Conversely, the whole nature of criticism also allows for the opposite effect, for some movie reviewer blown off by a big director at Cannes, to trash the filmmaker’s latest work, whether he paid for a ticket or was invited to a screening.   And surely we must realize that a movie reviewer who writes glowing things about some Hollywood crap will eventually find all his expenses covered for that press junket in St. Lucia to promote Lost: The (Inevitable) Movie.

The same holds true for the many, many wine bloggers out there.  In fact there was a debate amongst them several months back, those who will write bad reviews and those that won’t – even though the wine is sent free.  So what’s my point, exactly?

To fall on a cliche – you can’t please everyone – but by this same token, nor will you disappoint everyone.

I suppose the point, for those of us that make consumer goods, is to simply make the best product you can and let the chips fall where they may…

Your cliches may vary.

Published in: on April 27, 2009 at 12:39 pm  Leave a Comment  

My Life on the D(ull wine) List

370Lets go back a few years, okay 25, to my first Spring Break – Ft. Lauderdale 1984.  Ah, those were the carefree days of hitching a ride and cruising the strip, drinking at Penrods and of course, meeting the high school girls (who told us they were in college) in the room next door and “hanging out” – where are you Lydia Rudnicki – if that was your real name?

This year was a little different.  My room was just as messy, clothes strewn everywhere, but instead of empty beer cans the trash was overflowing with empty water bottles and juice boxes, the copy of Hustler was replaced by the latest in the “Diary of a Wimpy Kid” series and the TV was not tuned to MTV playing Motley’s Crue’s, “Home Sweet Home” but rather the soothing sounds of Sponge Bob (what else?).

The goal here though is is not to take you down the wonderful, magical memory lane of what Spring Break used to be – though if any mad scientist out there has some sort of go back in time formula, a la “17 Again” I’m your guinea pig – but more to discuss a topic that burns a hole in my brain everytime I swagger up to a bar these days to find a nice wine by the glass to enjoy.

Unfortunately it seems, the further up the food chain you go, the further down the ladder of interesting choices to be found BTG there seems to be.  Granted, at a big resort I don’t expect the Food and Beverage Manager to be able to buy wines directly from the winery, nor do I suspect that they are authorized to use anyone other then Enormo Wine Distribution, Inc. but please, if I have to look at another chalk board with a Ravenswood or Coppola or Kendall Jackson or Stonestreet or even Kim Crawford (whose wines I really like) only to order a beer instead…

As always, let me say that none of the wines I roped into one block above are bad, all are enjoyable, but they’re more enjoyable at $10.00 a bottle, not $10.00 a glass (the general rule of thumb for by the glass pricing).

I’ve paid more and would continue to pay more for an interesting glass of Tempranillo from a small producer in Spain, or better yet a boutique CA winery making great Syrah, Riesling or Cab.

Full disclosure:  we sell a lot of wine by the glass and its helped enormously to build our mailing list with people who took the suggestion of ordering something they’ve never heard of, paying $20.00/glass and loving it.

So for all the wine buyers out there, give a small shop a chance to wow your customers with something other than the wines being forced upon you.

It would have made my recent Spring Break trip about as sweet as a high school sophomore named Lydia…

Published in: on April 17, 2009 at 1:50 pm  Leave a Comment