Archive for the ‘Uncategorized’ Category

Nov 18, 2014

A Best-of-Its-Type Wine Book

There are all sorts of examples of books that just keep appearing, edition after edition after edition. There are really only two ways of looking at this phenomenon: 1) The book is old hat, but they just keep putting it out because it’s well-known and that’s good enough for the publisher, or 2) The book remains among the best of its type. There is no fine line here. A book that is among the best of its type is easily…

Nov 17, 2014

Hogwash!

I recently had the good fortune of being interviewed by ReasonTV on the subject of laws that harm wine consumers. In the brief interview, I outline many of the ways in which various state laws, supported by various actors in the wine industry, harm consumer choice and consumer access to wines. However, what I did not do is address the most common ways these laws are defended and justified by those that benefit from them. In the interest of thoroughness,…

Sep 12, 2014

Alcohol, Anti-Federalists and the Failure of the 21st Amendment

I’ve been enjoying of late a review of the politics and ideologies of the American Revolutionary period. This period of our history has always been my favorite. But in enjoying a series of lectures, reading an old Bernard Bailyn history and looking over some primary documents, one thing has become clear to me. Today’s consistently discriminatory state laws concerning alcohol, the state laws that put out-of-state entities at a severe commercial disadvantage, amount to a refutation of one of the…

Sep 3, 2014

Behold…The Rational Wine Consumer

In March, after a multi-year political battle, the Governor of Texas did not sign a law allowing sales of wine in grocery stores. Instead he signed a bill allowing cities and counties to vote on whether to sell wine in grocery stores. In June campaigns in a number of Tennessee cities began to gather signatures to put the question of whether wine should be sold in grocery stores there on the November ballot. Yesterday, after only three months, it was…

Aug 21, 2014

The Rise of “Natural” in Wine Marketing

Back in 2008, a study by Minitel found that “All Natural” was the second most frequently used claim on new American food products. A more recent study found that the term “100 Percent Natural” was consumers most popular claim to read on a food label. Marketers have figured out that “Natural” sells. They’ve also figured it out in the wine industry The above chart was created using ShipCompliant’s LabelVision tool that allows a comprehensive search of federally approved wine labels…