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Tuesday, December 30, 2014

Top Wine Stories of 2014

Top wine, and beer, news of the past year from a Sonoma County point-of-view.

Monday, December 29, 2014

Pennsylvania's Alcohol Gestapo Strikes Again

You might argue that places like Utah, Oklahoma, or even Massachusetts have more strict alcohol control than Pennsylvania, but nobody is more active in the enforcement of medieval laws. In PA all alcohol must be purchased via the state's bureaucrats whose livelihood depends on restricting citizen's rights while collecting taxes. Long ago we hated King George for the same reasons.

Friday, December 26, 2014

Why it's better to get drunk on wine

If you're gonna get drunk, and you know you are eventually, here's why it's better to do it on wine.
This is more stylish than twisting off the cap on a Bud

Monday, December 22, 2014

Wine Sales -- Getting You to Buy in the Tasting Room

If you should be lucky enough to visit winery tasting rooms you will be subjected to some standard sales techniques used by most of the winery staff. This, of course, is their job just like any other retail sales person.

For the smaller wineries that don't have much wine in the retail channel the sales from their tasting room is how they stay in business. It's also important for the big guys as they have to justify the costs associated with a tasting room. The sales push comes in two major flavors: Getting you to join their wine club and/or getting you to buy multiple bottles.

Thursday, December 18, 2014

Wine Marketing--Getting You to Buy

Marketing wine is pretty much like any other retail sales. There are some great lines the marketeers use to get you to act. Like these:

Time sensitive so you don't go away and think about it
Free shipping. Offer ends Friday
Up to 30% off for three days only
Last chance to save

Tuesday, December 16, 2014

All I Want for Christmas ...

Dear Santa,

Since I didn't get that six inch telescope when I was eight you owe me. Here's what I want this year. And it's not really even being selfish as most of this is as a public service for everyone to enjoy.

Friday, December 12, 2014

Wacky Alcohol Laws

Prohibition may have ended over 80 years ago, but that doesn't mean various state agencies didn't come up with lots of idiotic ideas afterwards. Liquor laws are all over the place in the U.S. There are still areas where it's illegal to drink (dry counties), there are places where you can't buy booze on Sunday, but elsewhere there are drive-through bars.

Wednesday, December 10, 2014

Sonoma County Wine in the Old Days

By "old days" I'm saying three decades ago. To some those were the old days. I mean look at those hairdos!

I ran across a magazine article on Google Books from the New York Magazine dated March 28, 1983. This article is titled "A Sip of Sonoma" with a subheading of "Most of Sonoma's wineries are new, but they're producing attractive wines at moderate prices."

Tuesday, December 9, 2014

Today's Weird Wine News

Leave it to the alcohol biz to come up with items like this:

Cannabis-infused wine because one buzz is never enough
Musician Melissa Etheridge is behind a project to create a line of pot-infused wines. I hope the wine is made to pair with the pot brownies.

Friday, December 5, 2014

Wine Accessories as Gifts

Everyone has at least one person on their holiday shopping list who already has everything. Okay, they have everything in your price range. How about a nice wine accessory? There is a lot more junk out there (admittedly, some of it is cute) than useful items.

Tuesday, December 2, 2014

Winter Events in Sonoma County

Major Wine-Related Events for Winter of 2014 /2015

This is the quiet time of year in the wine country and it's a great time to visit. What to expect:
  • There won't be any crowds (except on major event weekends). If you go on a weekday you could be the only people some wineries see all day!
  • Small crowds also means not much traffic, plus it's easy to find hotel rooms and get dinner reservations.
  • The weather can be 75 and sunny or 45 and raining so check the forecast before you go.