My Response to a Former Reader

My Response to a Former Reader

Dear Tom…I read your rant supporting wine scores. This has to be the most dundleheaded opinion I’ve ever seen. How can you justify using wine ratings to market wine when we know that the 100 point rating scale is a fraud. These “critics” who use the 100 point scale want to be seen to be objective and use 100 points to try to be seen as objective. And you know (so do they) that you can’t ever justify the difference…

Sep 17, 2019

A Snapshot of the State of the Oregon Wine Industry

A Snapshot of the State of the Oregon Wine Industry

The ascent of the Oregon wine industry continues apace. The latest bit of evidence that Oregon wine (and Oregon Pinot Noir in particular) is one of the hottest wine categories in the United States comes in the form of the 2018 Oregon Vineyard and Winery Report, an annual report produced by the Oregon Wine Board. The highlights of the report, which is focused primarily on developing a snapshot of the industry in 2018, are primarily agriculture and production focused. However,…

Sep 12, 2019

Why Reviews and Wine Scores ARE Good Winery Marketing

Why Reviews and Wine Scores ARE Good Winery Marketing

Recently Simon Solis-Cohen, founder of Highway 29 Creative, posted on the company blog a story entitled, “Wine Scores Are The Worst Marketing Technique – So Stop It!” First, let me just say this…The folks at Highway 29 Creative are GOOD! Take a look at their work. Take a look at their approach. Impressive. They are wrong about wine scores being the worst marketing technique. An even worse marketing technique is submitting your wine for review, getting 95+ points from a…

Sep 11, 2019

From Napa Valley to Willamette Valley — An Update and Assessment

From Napa Valley to Willamette Valley — An Update and Assessment

It’s been seven months since Kathy, Henry and I carried ourselves out of Napa and up to The-Great-State-of-Oregon (I’m told that’s the correct pronunciation). I am still regularly questioned in emails and otherwise as to how we like it up here and how it’s going. Here’s my impression. The Wine Industry There’s very serious winemaking going on in these parts and there have been for some time. One interesting thing is that despite the centrality of Oregon winemaking being here…

Sep 10, 2019

Zombies and How Winery DTC Shipping Comes to An End

Zombies and How Winery DTC Shipping Comes to An End

There is a dynamic currently in play among America’s alcohol regulators and the alcohol community as a whole that threatens Wineries’ direct-to-consumer shipping rights. Over the past month, I’ve sat through two conferences aimed at educating America’s alcohol regulatory community, its attorneys and the leadership of the three tiers. I attended the Center for Alcohol Policy’s Legal Conference in Boston and most recently the National Conference of State Liquor Administrator’s Central/Western Conference in Boston. At both conferences, there was a…

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