I receive quite a bit of wine for which I pay nothing. I have never bothered to measure the volume of influx of wine samples to my door, but it is high enough that whenever the doorbell rings in the afternoon, my toddler daughter now exclaims “more boxes of wine, daddy!”
Generally this volume of samples means two things for me:
- I cannot dream of complaining about the situation, even though it largely results in my basement storage space being taken up with shipping materials full bottles of wine that aren’t necessarily very good; and
- Whenever I receive a sample of something that isn’t actually a bottle of wine, I take notice immediately.
So naturally, the sample copy of Issue 29 of the UK-based publication The World of Fine Wine I received recently really stood out, as did the letter of introduction from its editor, Neil Beckett (and not just because it was printed on A4 paper). Here’s what Neil wrote to me (I’m hoping he doesn’t mind me reproducing it here):
“Some of my team here are followers of your site and we hoped you might like to see what we do in a rather more old-fashioned medium…”
That medium of course being a printed magazine, though calling The World of Fine Wine a magazine is a bit like calling the Bible a doorstop. It’s a gorgeous example of print, with stunning art reproductions and photography, and its 200+ pages put it more into the coffee-table-book species than what we in the U.S. customarily think of when asked to picture a wine magazine in our mind’s eyes. It also costs £30 per issue – or, roughly $170 for four issues. Ouch!…