In Mutineer Magazine Issue 3 we highlight twelve blogs that were represented at the Wine Bloggers Conference. Here is the second of twelve full interviews from the conference.
Blogger: Joe Roberts
Location: Philadelphia, PA
Launched: Fall 2007
What inspired you to start your blog?
I came about by accident actually. I had a wine consulting business with a buddy called 2 Wine Dudes and the blog was sort of a spin-off of that, just to bring some extra credibility and information to people that may be checking out that site and wondering what were about and to see that we’re out in the community. Now the consulting gig I don’t have time for; the blog has kind of taken over that whole space. So that’s where the 1 Wine Dude came from, it’s not just me wanting to get to the top of everybody’s blog roll because it starts with the number one, but that is a fortunate side effect.
What’s the vision behind the blog?
It’s whatever I want to write about. It’s funny because there is a lot of talk of making a niche for your blog, and I don’t do any of that. I’m not the poster child for what these guys are preaching.
How would you describe your blog to someone who has never seen it?
The way I describe it is that I try and make a little sense of the world of wine for people. So what I want you to be able to do after reading a post on the blog is say A) it was funny and I was entertained and B) I learned something. I’m not writing for other wine bloggers, I’m not writing for the industry, I’m writing for folks, everyday folks, that just want to understand a little bit more about wine. What keeps me going on it is that I want to write things that I wish I had access to when I was trying to learn about wine, so that’s really the drive behind it.
Do you review wines? If so, what is your approach and philosophy?
Yea, I do. If I’m going to review a wine, I want the situation around it to be interesting, to have a story around it, to use that wine as a vehicle to somehow explain or express something about the world of wine. So maybe I’ll review a German wine because I want to decipher a German wine label, something like that. So very rarely am I just talking about a wine. I do review wines on Twitter because it forces me to be very, very succinct and keep it under 140 characters. If you review a German wine on Twitter, you only have about 30 characters after you put in the name, (laughs) right? So it forces you to be really focused. 1winedudereview is the name of the twitter account. So most of my wine reviews are actually done there.
Why should people check out 1 Wine Dude?
I think people should check it out because I think it is entertaining, and it is starting to get some attention by some folks who are good writers, and they’re complimenting me, so I don’t know if that means I’m a good writer, I guess it means there is some promise there. I think people should check it out because it is a blog that is out there with hundreds of others about wine, which means that you can get on there and check it out, and if you like it, and it’s your style then that’s awesome. If you don’t, then I can give you a list of 200 other people who I think are pretty awesome that you might dig. It’s like one band’s style of music over another band’s style of music. There are a lot of talented people out there, and I’d like to think I’m one of them. My style is kind of specific. It’s a little gonzo, it’s a little over the top. If you’re into that, awesome. Come on board, I love to have people reading and contributing. If not, then that’s cool too.
Edited for clarity