Joe Vs. The 100-Point Wine (Thoughts On The 2006 Cardinale Cab And The Yoke Of “Blind Collection Mode”)

Vinted on June 23, 2011 binned in California wine, kick-ass wines, wine review

Imagine a a narrow, unevenly lit, and thoroughly cramped comic book shop near the Delaware / Pennsylvania state borders, inside of which we find a short, lanky kid in a blue-and-white 3/4-sleeve t-shirt fresh from rummaging through the bargain-bin boxes.  He’s holding up two “B-grade” comic books – one in each hand, suspended like some kind of very odd but colorfully shrink-wrapped leaves suspended from opposite branches of a geek tree.

“Excuse me… I have a question… which of these comics will be worth more in a few years?”

The (ok, admittedly bearded, large, and in appearance at least completely-fitting-the-cliché) comic shop owner stops what he’s doing, gives the kid a sideways glance, then slides his chair closer and leans over the shop counter. He looks the kid squarely in the eye in a rather… serious way, and answers him.

“A better question,” he says in a voice filled with much more kindness and understanding than would be belied in his stare, “would be ‘which one of these comics would give me more enjoyment.’”

The name of the comic shop and its owner are lost somewhere in my memory (or more likely were stored in brain cells long-since destroyed by alcohol consumption). The kid, of course, was me – many, many (many) moons ago.  And that comic shop visit was just about the last time I can remember finding myself in the throes of what I like to call “blind collection mode” – a mode of “appreciation” in which far too many wine aficionados would likely find themselves today, if only they’d take the personal blinders off long enough to realize it.

BCM isn’t caused by wine scores, but it is enabled by them. Because once you put a numerical value on a product or experience, you’re inviting a comparison of worth – and people will define the “worth” part in various ways, even to the point of absurdity…

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Social Media As Wine Retail Sales Weapon? (“Wine Marketing In The Digital Age” Post-Panel Musings)

Vinted on June 22, 2011 binned in going pro, wine 2.0

Can social media be used as tool to drive sales for wine retailers, distributors, and importers?

Yes, I’m seriously asking that question.  Stop laughing, okay?

Despite the fact that even well-attended and publicized retail events don’t seem to be moving umpteen cases of wine, the consensus answer seems to be “Yes – with caveats,” based on a panel discussion I took part in recently in New York.

The title of the thirty-minute sessions was Wine Marketing in the Digital Age – I shared the table with with Jody Rones from Thrillist.com (a daily email marketing blast with a ridiculous number of subscribers), Lindsey Johnson from wine PR mavens Lush Life Productions, and Gregory Dal Piaz of Snooth.com (Editor in Chief for the one of the largest wine websites in the world – he chaired the session).  The panel was part of a sponsored event by Wines of Chile, who concurrently put on a pretty kick-ass grand tasting of something like 300 Chilean wines, of which I had time to taste about twelve before having to hoof it to Penn Station to catch a train back to the ol’ dancin’ waters of Philly.

Thirty minutes isn’t a lot of time to cover such a potentially diverse and broad topic, but it won’t surprise 1WD readers that I said “screw it, I’ll try it anyway!”…

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WMG, NYC And TBA (Dining With The Wine Media Guild In New York)

Vinted on June 20, 2011 binned in on the road, wine industry events

 

I’m a member of the Wine Media Guild of New York, which probably makes little sense to many of you reading this considering that a) I don’t live in New York, b) I’m not formally in the media trade and c) I posses (maybe) one tenth the talent of WMG members like Kevin Zraly.  Members are required to attend a minimum of one WMG event per year, and so I carted my ass up to the Big Apple last week to attend the annual Hall of Fame dinner at the Four Seasons.

This year saw four people elected as Hall of Fame Inductees, none of whom, puzzlingly, were actually present to accept their honors (though in the case of Leon Adams, whose induction was posthumous, the absence was understandable!).

While it’s nice to rub elbows with the Right Coast’s wine media heavy-hitters, one of the biggest draws of the WMG annual HoF dinners are the wines brought by the members – many of whom pull out interesting/special/older bottles from their personal cellars, and I’m not above mooching off of the vinous bounty of my fellow members (not by a long way, in fact).

I guessed (correctly, it turned out) that most of the Right Coasters were going to go French (and older) with their selections, so I went a bit rogue with my choices…

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