Archive for the ‘Culture and Wine’ Category

Feb 25, 2019

Washington Grape Growers Witness the Farthest Reaches of “Stupid”

As executive director of the National Association of Wine Retailers, I get to read lots of legislation. And I’ve gotten pretty good at it. I also get to lay my eyes on some pretty poorly written bills as well as some really crazy stuff. This, however, must be the craziest thing I’ve seen in years: “Washington dairy farmers and fruit growers (grapes are “fruit”) would have to report to retailers whether they use slaves under a bill endorsed Thursday by…

Feb 1, 2019

The Wine Narrative is Slowly Changing—In a Bad Way

“Narrative” It’s a word that has come to be used more and more over the past decade to describe a given explanation or story concerning one topic or another. Most often you see the term “narrative” used to describe how the media is telling a particular story. For example, “the current narrative is that the Trump team worked with Russian representatives to influence the outcome of the 2016 election.” That’s a narrative. It may or may not be true. I…

Jan 2, 2019

Wine and the Mob — Prepare Yourself

For a number of reasons, the very worst and most destructive elements of America’s now prominent Slash & Burn culture hasn’t, yet, impacted the wine industry or individuals in the wine industry. But this post is a warning that those reasons could easily melt away quickly and immediately under certain conditions.  In an age where our chosen political tribes move further and further apart from one another, where debate becomes so polarized that any cross-talk between tribes can’t cross the…

Dec 19, 2018

Key 2018 Wine Trends — Gender and the Wine Industry

How did the American wine industry evolve in 2018? It’s a “meta question” that directs us to examine those issues that coursed through all elements of the industry and in the long run have the potential to significantly impact how industry professionals work, how the industry is perceived and how consumers respond to the industry’s offerings. Three issues drove the evolution of the American wine industry in 2018. This is the first of three posts examining those issues. Women and…

Nov 30, 2018

Freedom and Egalitarianism in American Wine

The San Francisco Chronicle’s excellent young wine editor, Esther Mobley, engages in some really interesting speculation this week. In response to Katherine Cole’s excellent survey of how some wine labelling regulations have and are changing in the U.S. published in SevenFifty Daily, Mobley asks the following question: “Will this emulation of Europe at some point endanger our distinctively American spirit of experimentation when it comes to planting vineyards?” What Esther is asking is will wine labelling regulations in the U.S….

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