Reader Mail Bag: Help A Newly-Minted Sales Rep

Vinted on September 2, 2015 binned in learning wine, wine tips

1WD reader Robert has written in to yours truly, with an interesting double-barreled challenge. I think that we need the collective wisdom of the insanely-intelligent, hyper-attractive, overly-inebriated, and mega-hyphenated 1WD readership to help this guy. Also, I’m in Champagne this week collecting vinous memories that will make you all jealous, so I could use a little help here as I can’t effectively type with one hand while the other is busy raising glasses of amazing bubbly to my face.

Here’s Robert’s request:

I am brand new to the world of wine, sure I drank my share but now want to get serious in the industry of selling, sampling and the tastings of all types of wine.  I just took on a sales rep position with a small fine wine importer/distributor and want to learn on best ways to succeed. Any advice on what baby steps to take or where to begin as a sales rep would be very much appreciated.

Notice that Robert has a dual challenge here, in that he simultaneously needs to learn the fine wine ropes (primarily, I’m guessing, through tasting, which – lucky for him – has already been touched on in Reader Mailbag form here), and in learning the fine wine sales rep ropes.

Now, I know that there is no shortage of the wine sales rep populace reading 1WD, so I’m asking you folks to help brother Robert!

Shout it out loud in the comments, people: what advice would you give to a newly-minted wine sales rep?





Wine Reviews: Weekly Mini Round-Up For August 31, 2015

Vinted on August 31, 2015 binned in wine mini-reviews

So, like, what is this stuff, anyway?
I taste a bunch-o-wine (technical term for more than most people). So each week, I share some of my wine reviews (mostly from samples) and tasting notes with you via twitter (limited to 140 characters). They are meant to be quirky, fun, and easily-digestible reviews of currently available wines. Below is a wrap-up of those twitter wine reviews from the past week (click here for the skinny on how to read them), along with links to help you find these wines, so that you can try them for yourself. Cheers!

  • 13 VIE Roussanne (Lake County): Fleshier than it looks, enticing at first sip, and offering up Bausch & Lomb levels of saline. $29 B+ >>find this wine<<
  • 12 Sol Rouge Gypsy Rouge Red (Lake County): Crazy-haired, wild-eyed, strongly opinionated, but also very clearly as sharp as a tack. $28 A- >>find this wine<<
  • 13 Baron Knyphausen Riesling Spatlese Kiedrich Sandgrub (Rheingau): As cozy & gentle as soft pillows, as crisp as newly ironed sheets $39 A- >>find this wine<<
  • 12 Dominio del Plata Susana Balbo Brioso (Agrelo): Four grapes, one vineyard, & a single, savory, focused, eagle-eyed determination. $45 A- >>find this wine<<
  • 14 Crios de Susana Balbo Rose Of Malbec (Mendoza): Put its big girl pants on, but lost none of its attractive vivacity in the process $14 B+ >>find this wine<<
  • 14 Crios de Susana Balbo Torrontes (Mendoza): An entire bunch of pretty, fresh cut flowers offered for the price of one or two. $14 B+ >>find this wine<<
  • 11 La Jota Vineyard Howell Mountain Merlot (Napa Valley): Sweet plum, black olive, and stern, mountain man heft and attitude. $70 A- >>find this wine<<
  • 11 La Jota Vineyard Cabernet Franc (Howell Mountain): Zesty strawberries can actually achieve spicy, mineral depth? Go figure. $75 A- >>find this wine<<
  • 11 La Jota Howell Mountain Cabernet Sauvignon (Napa Valley): Gravel paths through blackberry bushes, surrounded with stunning scenery. $80 A >>find this wine<<
  • 07 Cardinale Red Wine (Napa Valley): Sage, herbs, anise, licorice, dates, all served up on fine silk & chased with a Cuban cigar. $240 A >>find this wine<<



They Can Be Heroes (Ben Rye Retrospective At Palate Press)

Vinted on August 27, 2015 binned in on the road
Palate Press Ben Rye

image: Palate Press

Continuing the coverage from my Sicily jaunt earlier this year, if you head on over to Palate Press you can now view my take on a bit of a vinous historic first (“Heroic Viticulture on the island of Pantelleria”).

While in Sicily, I was lucky enough to have a chance to visit both the wind-swept isle of Pantelleria (or, as I will now refer to it, “The Wind-Swept Isle of Pantalleria,” properly capitalized, since that seems to be the most common way it’s referenced across all of wine media, and it sounds kick-ass), and to meet at length with the Rallo clan, the family who head up iconic Sicilian producer Donnafugata (or, “Iconic Sicilian Producer Donnafugata”).

For their sense of hospitality, I would call the Rallos impeccable hosts, but they get the fully capitalized “Impeccable Hosts” title for inviting me to the first ever retrospective tasting of every available vintage of Ben Ryé, their celebrated Passito di Pantelleria dessert wine (“Celebrated Pa…” ok, you’re right, enough already)….

Read the rest of this stuff »




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