By the time you read this, I will be en route to Strasbourg, France – not a wine-related trip I’m afraid, but I will be trying my darndest to get to nearby Alsace at some point during the week. If I do, you’ll be among the first to know, because I will be posting like… well, like a drunken American touring Alsatian wineries. If not, then posting here on 1WineDude will be, at best, sporadic during the week.
Which is fine, because there is still some super-exciting shizz going down! Which brings me to today’s topic:
BIGGEST. TTL. EVER.
Actually, it might be the BIGGEST On-line Wine Tasting Event. EVER.
On April 17th, Twitter Taste Live is teaming up with Hospice du Rhone, which is not only the biggest non-profit business league promoting Rhone wine varieties, they also host one of the biggest wine shin-digs of the year. In their own words:
“Each year, HdR produces an exceptional three-day event that is globally regarded as the single most essential and enjoyable gathering of international Rhône wine producers and enthusiasts. Attendees expand their knowledge of the 22 Rhône varieties, while rubbing elbows with the winemakers whose passion spurs the inspiration and energy that sets the tone for every seminar, meal, and tasting.”
That gives this TTL event the option of picking from 22 kicking grape varieties, as well as their various combinations which probably works out to something like 412 billion. Or thereabouts.
3 Time Zones
Because of the team-up with HdR, all of the stops are getting pulled out for this one.
The April 17 TTL event will be held across three different time zones – GMT (UK), ET (U.S. East Coast), and PT (U.S. West Coast) – and co-hosted by a different wine blogger in each of the three event regions. Each time zone will focus their TTL tasting on wines made from a different subgroup of the 22 Rhone varieties.
I’ll be co-hosting the East Coast event, since we all know that one will be the coolest, right? Here’s the skinny…
We’re still finalizing the wine selections, but the kickin’ East Coasties will be sampling 4 wines:
– A sparkling Muscat a Petit Grains
– 2 Different styles of dry Grenache-based reds
– A Grenache Blanc dessert wine
Oh, yeah, baby! That lineup is gonna be the shiz!
But that is certainly not all – I will be co-hosting LIVE from enemy Patriots territory in Boston, where the Bin Ends Wine crew and I will be joining Boston’s The Second Glass and 500 of our closest drunken friends at Wine Riot! 2009 in Boston’s happenin’ South End!
So, to recap: Twitter Taste Live, Hospice du Rhone, The Second Glass, Wine Riot! 2009, 1WineDude, 500 loud & crazy drunken Bostonians, and the option to continue the party across two other time zones on the same day.
I’m not just stoked for this event, I am uber-stoked for this event. I am 6-year-old-on-a-Mountain-Dew-and-Twinkiehigh stoked.
Be sure to check out the TTL event site to RSVP and get updates on the event as they’re finalized.
Those (recently hungover) of you who took part in the 10th Annual Open That Bottle Night may still be wallowing in the glorious, albeit headache-riddled post-celebratory vibe of having enjoyed a special bottle of wine for no particular reason at all.
That’s right, baby – we opened it up, and drank it all… just because it was there!
Those of you who joined me and the dozens of others in the interactive, on-line tasting for OTBN at Twitter Taste Live might also have come away with a few other realizations about wine in the world of high-tech.
I certainly did. And I’m not talking about the fact that Craig and the Bin Ends Wine staff did such an excellent job rounding up great wines from the Wilson Daniels portfolio, as well as hosting the event (though those things are certainly true).
No, I’m talking about some truths that run deep into the world where fine wine and technology intersect – and they are truths that anyone involved in selling wine in this highly interconnected world had better sit up and notice, stat.
And here they are…
3 Truths Revealed from the 10th Annual Open That Bottle Night
- Wine is more social now than ever.
It probably seems silly to point out that wine is a social beverage, since as a collective populace we’ve known that for a few thousand years. But it is worth pointing out that the Internet is highlighting wine’s social gadfly status and taking it to new and ever-more-interesting heights.Open That Bottle Night probably saw its largest participation ever this past weekend, thanks to the advent of social network. On-line social networks (including Twitter Taste Live and the Open Wine Consortium) were all over OTBN this year. Let’s look at the twitter event – thousands of new twitter accounts are created every day, and the network handles millions of messages on a daily basis. The OTBN Twitter Taste Live event trended to the #2 topic during it’s run this past weekend – which means that potentially millions of on-line eyeballs were watching a several dozen wine lovers chatted to each other in real-time about what they thought of the Wilson Daniel wine selections. Which leads me to truth #2…
- The Internet itself IS social networking.
Millions of people may have been watching the OTBN TTL event, if even for only a few minutes. That is a golden marketing opportunity in terms of exposure for Bin Ends Wine and Wilson Daniels. While it’s still a bit small-time in comparison to television ad exposure, it’s far cheaper and far more effective, because a) more and more people are turning to alternative means (like the Internet) for product recommendations and b) those same people are more willing to trust a friendly recommendation than one given to them in a one-way message from traditional advertising.The days of one-way, traditional media advertising – including advertising for wine – is going the way of the dinosaur and Wayne Newton’s career. Leading us to truth #3…
- You don’t need a master plan to get started in getting social, but you’d better get social now.
Twitter.com doesn’t really have a master plan for utilizing the Internet and on-line social network to make money. Bin Ends Wine and Twitter Taste Live probably don’t have one, either. But it doesn’t matter right now – they’re in the game, pushing the envelope to see what will and won’t work in the space. Bottom line is that whoever is involved in making wine social on-line right now is going to reap the benefits, even if they’re not sure what those benefits are yet, and it doesn’t cost them much in terms investment (or overall risk) to do it.If you’re in the wine business and you’re not part of this trend, you need to get involved, and you need to do it NOW, even if you don’t quite “get it” – it will come to you eventually, so not understanding the clear benefits of using social networking needs to be the last thing you’re worrying about.
As for the wines we tasted for OTBN, here are my mini-review takes:
05 Marc Kreydenweiss Kritt Pinot Blanc “Les Charmes” (Alsace): Citrus & pear, w/ a honeyed finish that seems to last for an hour. Great buy.
06 Domaine Pierre Morey Aligoté (Burgundy): Someone just shot an acid laser into my mouth! Needs seafood cerviche (the rawer the better).
05 Domaine Marc Kreydenweiss Perrières (Costières de Nîmes): Brings the barnyard funk, in a good way, w/ dark cherry, leather, & bacon. Yum.
06 Tenuta di Biserno Insolgio del Cinghiale (Tuscany): Kickin’ blend with tobacco leaf, smoke, & dark jammy fruit. Prepare ye some Bison!
Hey, look at that, there’s an example of how this social on-line stuff spirals outward in ways that you don’t think about right away – those mini-reviews are even more exposure for the Wilson Daniels wines, at almost no cost to them… so those 900+ of my twitter followers who didn’t see the wine reviews this weekend in real time might catch them if they’re among the few hundred following my wine mini reviews, or they could be among those visiting the blog daily, or they’ll see them if they are part of the few hundred that subscribe to my blog via email…
I think (I hope) that you get the point – start getting involved!
(images: twittertastelive.com, 1winedude.con, twitter.com)