This Issue of The Grapevine Magazine

Mobile Bottling Preparation

Preparing for bottling, mobile or not, is no easy challenge. The key to success while preparing for the mobile bottler to arrive is communication and planning. This can’t be stressed enough when you digest the topics below and we can use this document even if we have our own bottling line. When It is recommended to contact a mobile bottler at least 6 months prior to actually needing them. Discuss the overall plan from wine styles, case volume, road access for their truck and address other questions the bottling operator may have. Then request their spec sheet in terms of label wind, label spool core size, label spool size, capsules, bottle styles, screw cap capabilities etc. Does the mobile bottler […]

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Idaho Wine Re-Emerging After 160 Years

Although vineyards were established in the state in the 1860s, say “Idaho” and the first thing that comes to mind for most is the famous white potato, not wine. But it was Idaho that first produced award-winning wines in the Pacific Northwest. Today, they hide in the shadow of their famous neighbors, but Idaho’s wineries are slowly emerging into the limelight and taking advantage of the state’s natural resources. Idaho’s small and somewhat ‘secret wine industry’ is partly due to their late arrival to the modern wine world. Idahoans approved a state-wide ban on alcohol in 1916, four years before a national prohibition went into effect. As elsewhere, Prohibition halted a promising wine industry, started in the late 1860s by […]

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Ontario Shoppers! You Can Now Purchase Your Wine at a Grocery Near You

October 28, 2016, is the date of the next step in the steady march toward greater access to wines of Ontario. On that date, wine will be found on the shelves of 70 groceries throughout the province. The day comes just eight months after the February 2016 promise made by Premier Kathleen Wynne to eventually permit up to 300 groceries to offer wine, including imports, just down the aisle from the steak and cheese. The suggestion to open Ontario’s grocery market to wine was included in the recommendations of the Premier’s Advisory Council on Government Assets presented in April of 2015. The report said, “First, we are recommending the creation of a new retail channel for wine that is separate […]

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Make Your Bottle Images Sell For You!

As the saying goes: “a picture is worth a thousand words”. When it comes to your business, it may as well be worth thousands of dollars in revenue. Let’s look at some data: • People are attracted to images: they remember 10% of what they hear, 20% of what they read, and 80% of what they see.¹ • People are really attracted to images when shopping: 67% of e-commerce users say the product image is “very important” in purchase decision-making, even more so than the product description (54%) and ratings and reviews (53%).² • First impressions matter a lot: the average person’s attention span is only 8.25 seconds… less than a goldfish that clocks at 9!³ Big players are well […]

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POMACE: From Trash to Treasure

The vineyard is a miraculous place where sugars and flavors come from the earth each year and are used to produce the wines of the world. But did you know that the vineyard is also a production center for powerful anti-oxidants and polyphenols in all parts of the plant? While the value of the fruit of the vine is well known, the value of other components of the process are only beginning to be realized in the United States. Pomace is the solid remains of grapes, olives, or other fruit after juice or oil has been extracted. The remains include stems, seeds, skins and pulp. It is an unavoidable consequence of winemaking, and so, the question becomes, what should be […]

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Buena Vista Winery Rebirth of a Legend

The storied history of California winemaking is jam-packed with legendary visionaries whose entrepreneurial endeavors put regions like Napa and Sonoma on the international wine map. Perhaps none of these is as colorful as Agoston Haraszthy, a Hungarian soldier, merchant and promoter who crafted the future of California winemaking. Today, 150 years later, Haraszthy’s historic past is being brought back to life at his original estate, Buena Vista Winery in Sonoma County. Haraszthy, who was born into nobility and had a passion for grape-growing, arrived in California during the Gold Rush. But unlike the forty-niners who dreamed of striking gold, the self-proclaimed “Count” was on a quest for “purple-gold” —the perfect terroir for exceptional wine. He found it at what was […]

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Choosing the Right Trademark for Your Wine

The importance of choosing a high quality trademark for your wine cannot be overstated. At its core, a wine trademark is a means to quickly convey important information about a given wine. It’s shorthand. It says, “this wine originates from this producer.” And that’s important, because consumers who are inundated with a plethora of wines yearn for a quick, easy way to associate a producer with a product. Having a good trademark allows consumers to easily identify your product and distinguish it from everyone else’s. This way, both you and your consumers are better off. Trademark Quality So what constitutes a “good” trademark? One of the [more important] things that I learned in college was a bit of wisdom imparted […]

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VINEYARD DEVELOPMENT:

New Technologies Applied to Diagnostics During the fall season vineyard managers and winemakers are busy with harvest activities. The sugars must be right and flavors have to be special. They hope that the rain will come just in time and after the last grape bunches are harvested. When this article comes out, all this will be over (or almost over) and the winemaking tasks likely will have started. This is the time that vineyard managers and winemakers should start to plan for any new vineyard development in the horizon. If you heard me speak or met with me personally, you know my philosophy: plan ahead. When planting a new vineyard, likely you will need to place your order for grafted […]

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Barrel Maintenance In Wineries

Barrels are an integral part of the winemaking process. Behind only the grape in importance, this is where wine is fermented, aged, and where many wines will gain the subtle flavors that make us love them. The care that goes into maintaining these vessels must be a top priority for any winery. The Ideal Wood About the time that winemakers moved from using buckets to barrels, an important choice needed to be made. The choice of what wood should be used to construct them. It wasn’t simple. The wood had to be readily available, flexible, stable when wet and dry, decay resistant, and, most importantly, it should not hurt the taste of the wine. Plenty of woods are bendable, plenty […]

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8 Tips to Help You Make the Most of Your Trade Show Experience

Trade shows let you see the latest winemaking equipment, meet with your fellow winemakers, and attend seminars to learn more about market trends that will affect the future of your business. However, attending a trade show for the first time can feel a bit overwhelming. To make attending your first trade show easier, we’ve interviewed several veteran attendees to provide a list of helpful tips for making the most of your experience. 1. Be Strategic When Deciding Which Shows to Attend With so many different trade shows scheduled throughout the year, deciding which events to attend can be a challenge. You’ll want to consider factors such as the cost of registration, associated travel expense, and perceived benefit of attendance before […]

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Why is Winery PR so difficult?

5 Tips for a successful Media Outreach Campaign It’s difficult, because it’s about relationships. And reading. Yes, lots of reading. And research, planning, tracking, analysis and follow-up. The fun stuff, right? And things change. Just when you think you have good contacts, well planned schedules and best known methods things change – people retire and writers move on, wine columns are canceled; writers get hired to work for savvy wineries that understand the importance of professional writing and content development. And I’m just talking about my job as a winery publicist! What about the small family-run wineries that face the challenges of growing, producing, wholesaling and DTC marketing their wines, and with limited resources? Here are five best practice areas […]

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The Lowdown on Natural, Organic & Biodynamic Wines

Everywhere you turn, the “go green” movement towards sustainable living is growing stronger – in the foods we eat, the houses we build, and the businesses we run. So not surprisingly, environmentally friendly trends have extended to the wine industry as well. In the U.S. and other countries around the world, vineyards have been producing wines labeled as organic, natural, and biodynamic, thereby shifting their operations away from traditional grape-growing techniques. However, there remains much confusion about what these terms actually mean for growers, retailers, and consumers. In this article, we will discuss the various types of “alternative” wine to better understand how these grapes are grown, how the wines are marketed, and how they taste to the consumer. To […]

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