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SF Vintners Market Returns This Weekend


SF Vintners Market 2012

IT’S BACK! SF Vintners Market will be running this weekend at the Fort Mason Center, and if you are a wine drinker in the bay area, you should do yourself a favor and attend. Not only can you try a endless array of wines, you can purchase the wines on the spot for further enjoyment at home. As the Guinness guys would say, “BRILLIANT!”

Mutineer will be there both days, so come by and say hello and purchase a subscription for yourself and all your friends. Your fine beverage karma will thank you.

What: San Francisco Vintners Market
When: April 14th & 15th

Where: Fort Mason Center, Festival Pavilion, San Francisco, CA

: General Admission: $80.00 (Includes all wines except Reserve Room)

Reserve Admission: $100 (Includes Reserve Room access to wines priced at $50 per bottle or higher)

Trade tasting: 12pm – 1pm Saturday & Sunday (RETAIL WINE BUYERS AND MEDIA ONLY)
General Admission: 1pm – 4pm Saturday & Sunday
Reserve Room Access: 12pm – 4pm Saturday & Sunday

Comments Off on SF Vintners Market Returns This Weekend 04.13.2012 |

The Big Top Comes to Town: Mutineer Magazine’s Marvelous Millennial Wine Marketing Circus is Coming to a Town Near You


Mutineer Magazine’s Marvelous Millennial Wine Marketing Circus

Ladies and gentleman, children of all ages, Mutineer Magazine is thrilled to announce the first-of-its-kind Millennial Wine Marketing Circus, a traveling conference that brings together Millennial wine marketing brands to speak to Millennial culture and its implications on the wine industry. The 2012 #WineCircus will visit five premier wine regions to offer insight on how to cultivate a love affair between wine brands and the Millennial market. During the week of May 14 – 18, six accomplished Millennial-focused entrepreneurs will take to the stage to offer valuable data, creative oddities and Millennial delights to wine industry professionals, free of charge.

“We’ve assembled an exceptional roster of marketing-savvy wine professionals to shed some light on the Millennial wine market,” says Mutineer Magazine Editor-in-Chief and Publisher Alan Kropf. “Much of that conversation has been focused on social media fundamentals and spiritless reinvention. Now, for the first time, wine industry professionals will hear directly from Millennials who are changing modern wine culture with their inspired platforms and innovative methods of connecting Millennial consumers with wine brands.”

This complimentary 2-hour workshop will dazzle attendees with grand discussions and inspired thoughts about the Millennial wine market with topics that include:

— The Millennial Wine Consumer
— Traditional PR in the Era of New Media
— Next Level Social Media
— Collaborative Marketing Strategies
— Marketing Assets in the Era of New Media
— Leveraging Tech to Collect Valuable Data
— Connecting Your Brand With the Millennial Mind-Set
— The Power of Beverage Culture

In 2011, The Wine Market Council reported that the Millennial market (defined as consumers between the ages of 21-34) is composed of 1.7 billion people worldwide and 77 million in the U.S. which is larger than the Baby Boomers and nearly three times the size of Generation X. Of the Millennial generation’s wine drinking population 51% fall into the “core drinkers” category and pull corks at least once a week. 67% of those consumers reported to have purchased unknown brands frequently/occasionally. 32% of Millennials have traded over to wine, from beer or spirits, as their preferred fine beverage.

“Millennials are forcing industries to reinvent themselves and the wine industry is no different,” said Morgan First, CEO and Co-Founder of Second Glass. “Join the circus and learn new social media and marketing feats that will allow you to navigate this new market with confidence.”

The Line Up:
The magnanimous circus roustabout includes the following performers:

Morgan First, Second Glass: thesecondglass.com / @SecondGlass
— Morgan is the networker, cheerleader, press liaison and the instigator/organizer behind the expansion of Second Glass. Morgan has blurred the line between marketing and technology to transform the wine tasting experience for Millenials. Both Morgan and Tyler’s efforts have landed them praise in the New York Times, Huffington Post, and they were recently included in Inc’s 30 under 30.

Tyler Balliet, Second Glass: thesecondglass.com / @SecondGlass
— Second Glass was born out of Tyler’s desire to transform wine tasting with technology and education. He developed the mobile application used in tandem with Wine Riot, a millennial focused event that empowers consumers with confidence and education in a fun, entertaining atmosphere. Tyler has been heralded as a new voice in the wine world and crowned “the prince of Boston’s wine revolution” by Stuff Magazine.

Harry Oranges, Mutineer Magazine: mutineermagazine.com / @MutineerMag
— Prior to joining the Mutineer Magazine team, Harry Oranges oversaw the digital PR and social media strategy of the first-ever Napa Valley Film Festival. A communicator at his core, Harry is quickly making his mark in the Millennial wine scene.

Alan Kropf, Mutineer Magazine: mutineermagazine.com / @MutineerMag
— Alan is certified through the Court of Master Sommeliers, Wine & Spirit Education Trust, Cicerone and National Bartenders School. Alan has beverage experience at some of the world’s more prestigious properties, including the Beverly Hills Hotel and Gordon Ramsay. Alan founded Mutineer Magazine in 2008, which was picked up for national distribution in 2009. Since then Alan has won numerous beverage and publishing awards for his work with Mutineer, including Forbes Magazine’s “30 Under 30”, Zagat’s “30 Under 30” for San Francisco, and Wine & Spirits Magazine’s “30 Under 30”.

Christophe Smith, Harvest Live: harvestlive.tv / @cork_dork
— Christophe Smith is a ten year veteran of the wine industry and has worked in production, retail, marketing and national sales, although is best known for his creativity and achievements in social media. Currently a Producer at WineBizRadio.com, and has created Titus TV and Harvest Live, two popular web-based programs that create real world consumer engagement.

Ashley Nicole Teplin, Teplin+Nuss: teplinnuss.com / @TeplinNuss
— Prior to starting her own agency, Ashley Nicole Teplin worked with the renowned Pamela Hunter at Studio-707. Pam and her colleagues pioneered an approach to traditional Public Relations that is today’s standard. She was recently featured in North Bay Biz Magazine as a publicist integral in guiding the consistent online voice in 2012 in the article titled, “Inside the Millennial Mind.”

Sarah Elliman, CellarPass: cellarpass.com / @CellarPass
— Sarah Elliman pioneers new ways to help wineries reach their target audience and increase consumer response, specifically with on-site visits. She applies her keen understanding of the customer/winery relationship at CellarPass, a real-time winery reservation system that helps customers discover and book wine tasting experiences. Resourceful and innovative, Sarah continually develops new ways to improve winery processes and enhance the guest experiences that lead to long lasting customer loyalty.

The Schedule & To Register:
Admission is free to all registered participants on EventBrite. The Mutineer Magazine Marvelous Millennial Wine Marketing Circus will visit:

Calaveras County | May 14- Twisted Oak:

Santa Barbara | May 15- Firestone Winery:

Paso Robles | May 16- EOS Wines:

Sonoma Valley | May 17- Sebastiani Winery:

Napa Valley | May 18- Charles Krug:

Second Glass Wine Riot Boston Less Than Two Weeks Away


Wine Riot

Second Glass’s Wine Riot, the US tour of wine events dubbed as two parts education and one part revolution, is less than two weeks away from the start of their 2012 US tour. On April 20 and 21, Wine Riot will kick off their 2012 season on their home turf as they take over Boston’s Park Plaza Castle with 250 wines from around the world. Fueling your night of conquest is a tireless DJ, photo booth, temporary tattoos, and a few thousand of your closest friends. Wine Riot is an incredible event and is a testament to the vision of the founders “to create a fun, non-intimidating place where people could learn about wine.”

    Wine Riot Boston

  • Opening Night: Friday, April 20, 7-11 PM – $60*
  • Riot One: Saturday, April 21, 1-5 PM – $50
  • Riot Two: Saturday, April 21, 7-11 PM – $50

*Opening night is limited to only 500 tickets on sale and includes extra treats from Taza Chocolate.

To purchase tickets to Wine Riot Boston, click here.

Where else will you see Wine Riot?

  • Wine Riot DC May 5
  • Wine Riot Chicago June 1-2
  • Wine Riot Austin July 20-21
  • Wine Riot SF August 3-4
  • Wine Riot NYC September 21-22
  • Wine Riot LA November 10

The Mission of Second Glass
We want you to drink more wine. Sure, wine can seem complicated, but in the end it all comes down to whether you like it or not. It’s that simple. Our goal is to give you the tools to find cool wine tastings, talk to experts, explore wine regions and constantly discover new favorites. You don’t have to use dorky wine-speak or spend a lot of time learning about wine to have fun with it. And we’re here to help.

Comments Off on Second Glass Wine Riot Boston Less Than Two Weeks Away 04.09.2012 |

2012 Pebble Beach Food and Wine Preview


Pebble Beach Food and Wine

With one of the world’s most iconic wine and food festivals just a few weeks away, you’ve got to ask yourself one question: “Do I feel lucky?”

Well, do ya, punk?

OK, despite being held a stone’s throw away from a certain celebrity’s beloved hometown of Carmel, there are no guarantees he’ll make your day. But if good fortune does, indeed, shine upon you, you’ll be spending an extended weekend with more than 75 prominent chefs and 250 acclaimed wineries and distinguished winemakers from around the world.

From April 12 – 15, 2012, The Inn At Spanish Bay will host the fifth annual eating and drinking orgy, Pebble Beach Food and Wine. Culinary luminaries like Thomas Keller, Daniel Boulud, Wolfgang Puck and Jacques Pepin will join grape minds the likes of Raj Parr, Eric Railsback, Andrea Robinson, and Mark Mendoza, at this four day event of epic indulgence. Glasses of Ruinart and Krug will be followed by Haut-Brion, Lafite, Latour, Margaux, Rothschild, and topped off with tastes of Ramos Pinto and Y’quem. Dinners will feast on meals with names like “Farewell to Foie Gras,” “Swine + Wine,” “The Iron Chef Dinner” and “South By Southwest” – a lunch catered by Dean Fearing, Tim Love, Casey Thompson and John Sedlar. Lucky, indeed.

Ticket prices per person range from $100 for a single event pass to $4,750 for a VIP four-day pass, which will provide access to all events and exclusive after-hours parties with the winemakers and chefs. Clint Eastwood not included.

Comments Off on 2012 Pebble Beach Food and Wine Preview 04.05.2012 |

New York International Wine Competition Now Accepting Submissions


Second Annual New York International Wine Competition

Submissions are now being accepted to participate in the Second Annual New York International Wine Competition (“NYIWC”) taking place on May 5th-6th 2012 at the Scholastic Building in SOHO. Compared to other competitions this contest stands out from others because of its distinctive set of standards and one-of-a-kind judging process making it the quintessential competition for all wines.


• The competition is open to any international winery whose products are commercially available in their country of origin.

• All wines are judged by a group of TRUE key trade targets – wine focused buyers, restaurant & bar sommeliers, retail stores owners/buyers, restaurant & bar owners, distributors & importers, etc… Unlike other competitions, these expert TRADE ONLY judges and their opinions make an immediate impact and have the ability to directly influence sales and a brand’s bottom line.

• The panelists of trade volunteer judges are not involved for publicity or for their industry position as critics or members of the press. They are the decision makers, experts and willing supporters of the craft who have an authentic understanding of the business of buying and selling wine.

• Each product category has a sub category for pricing. Therefore, a wine will be judged in its category along with other wines in the same price range. Each category will have its own pricing levels and details are listed on the submission form. For example, a $15 Cabernet will be judged against a $20 Cabernet and not a $45 Cabernet. The judges will also know the set retail price of the wine beforehand they taste and rate.

• We are including a “Kosher Wine Section” which is a new section in the 2012 NYIWC. Kosher Wineries have the opportunity to submit their wines to be judged in the regular or the Kosher Wine section that utilizes the same wine categories in the competition. They will also have the opportunity to submit the same wine in both sections at a reduced submission rate. Trade buyers with experience in Kosher Wines buying will specifically be on the Kosher Wine judging panel.

• Wines will be rated on a set of criteria including appearance, aroma, taste, mouthfeel and finish.

• Upon completion of the tastings, panelists will confer and decide which samples are award worthy.

• Award levels are Double Gold, Gold, Silver, and Bronze.
– Double Gold: Phenomenal Product for Buyers
– Gold: Buyers “Love” It
– Silver: Buyers “Like” It
– Bronze: Buyers will purchase it

• Double Gold award winners will be re-tasted by all panelists to establish which brands may be eligible to receive a ‘Best of Category’ endorsement in their pricing category.

• While other recognized competitions prize up to 85% of entrants, the discerning panel and ethos of the NYIWC is to award the brands that are most deserving and not everyone that enters the competition. Last year, the NYIWC awarded less than 40% of its entrants.
See the full post »

Comments Off on New York International Wine Competition Now Accepting Submissions 03.14.2012 |

2012 Big Gay Train – March 31, Napa Valley


2012 Big Gay Train

On Saturday, March 31st join hosts, Out in the Vineyard, Wine Country’s premier LGBT travel and event company, in Napa for an evening of food, wine pairings and fun on the 2012 Big Gay Train & Winemaker Dinner. The evening will feature wines from prominent LGBT winemakers from around Napa Valley. They will also be on hand mingling and answering any questions diners may have about their wine.

Tickets are going fast and are $160 per person and can be purchased calling the Napa Valley Wine Train at 1-800-427-4124.

Check out the menu to get a sneak a peek at the delicious evening ahead.

Comments Off on 2012 Big Gay Train – March 31, Napa Valley 03.13.2012 |

C. Mondavi & Sons Whip Out Their Divining Rod On Millenials


CK Mondavi Logo

Napa Valley based wine company C. Mondavi & Sons has unveiled their plans to launch their first new brand in over 60 years. Wines rolling out under their new brand The Divining Rod will be soon be available nationwide starting with a 2010 Santa Lucia Highlands Chardonnay and followed by a 2010 Alexander Valley Cabernet Sauvignon. According to COO Mike Jaeger, “The Divining Rod will target the Millennials” so expect both of their first releases to be premium wines that still float under that pesky $20 price point.

CK Mondavi Logo

Historically a divining rod appears as the forked branch of a tree or shrub. The operator of this device would utilize it to miraculously discover water or other valuable resources in an otherwise barren plot of land. Irrigation techniques in the vineyard have since improved. If C. Mondavi positions it well, their Divining Rod will surely find profit in catering to the Millennial wine market. The man in the picture above can bee seen using a divining rod. He does not belong to the Millenial wine market.

C. Mondavi’s existing portfolio includes their premium label Charles Krug and the accessibly priced CK Mondavi. Charles Krug features estate grown Cabernet, Merlot, Chardonnay and Pinot Noir varietals with a selection of wines ranging from $18-$29 while their Family Reserve ranges from $50-$75. The Divining Rod offers the opportunity to round out the family portfolio and add a fresh brand to the mix.

“C. Mondavi has been in business since the 1940s and has only had two brands,” says Jaeger, formerly president of Wilson Daniels and Canandaigua Wines (Constellation), who joined the group last year. “But we now want to focus on growth—more than the winery has ever done in the past.” And grow they shall!  C. Mondavi is adding The Diving Rod to the table in April, recently hired Stacy Clark as the new winemaker for Charles Krug, and renovating Redwood Cellars, a historic building that will be repurposed as the vineyard’s tasting room and visitor center.

Comments Off on C. Mondavi & Sons Whip Out Their Divining Rod On Millenials 03.08.2012 |

Premiere Napa Valley 2012: Big Money, Iconic Winemakers & A Former Arch-Nemesis

Beverage NewsWine

Premiere Napa Valley

The wine masses gather to taste the 2012 Premiere Napa Valley wines.

Premiere Napa Valley has become something of an institution among U.S. wine events since its launch in 1997. It serves not only as an indicator of what’s to come in the high-end wine market, but as a barometer for the U.S. economic recovery as a whole. The wine auction revenues this year exceeded 2011 by 31% and set a new all-time record with bidders paying $3.1 million for the 200 wine lots comprised of 1,495 total cases. (Premiere Napa Valley took place on Saturday, February 25. On Tuesday, February 28, the Dow rose above 13,000 points for the first time since May 2008).

According to Pine Ridge Vineyards CEO and PNV 2012 Chair Erle Martin, “The way our customers reacted, it strikes me that it was just that: a market response. The result of this auction is a true measure of the market. Clearly, even in a still challenged economy, the retailers and restaurateurs have voted. The buyers for these wines would not have put forth this kind of investment if they didn’t feel–with real security–that they could sell these wines.”

The event began earlier in the week for many, arriving in the valley to be wined and dined and reacquaint themselves with the Napa experience. Winery wisdom says to know who is going to buy your lot and for how much before the auction begins, and the week-long lead up provides one last opportunity to woo potential buyers. Martin adds, “The energy was high all week leading up to the event on Saturday. Our retail, restaurant and wholesale clients were arriving as early as Monday to the Napa Valley to join vintners at private tastings and we could feel the excitement grow day by day.”

Today, patrons arrived at 9am to began tasting samples from the lots that will be auctioned later in the day. It is a frenzied tasting, with palates fighting a battle for survival sampling so many young and aggressive wines.

At this event, everybody is somebody of some formal fine beverage capacity. It’s a who’s who of Napa Valley and beyond, with iconic wine makers mingling with consumer attendees and national level buyers alike. I even run into my old arch-nemesis Steve Heimoff, it’s that kind of party. Every introduction has the potential to lead to something big, and with an endless supply of wine to provide social lubrication and the beautiful aesthetic of the CIA Greystone to serve as a backdrop, anything is possible.

Premiere Napa Valley

A rare sighting of The Mutineer and The Heimoff together.

For the foolish that skip breakfast, the 11am buffet lunch prepared by the Culinary Institute of America cannot come soon enough. Braised vegetables, mushroom risotto, squash ravioli and other hearty winter dishes provide much needed comfort-food nourishment and a perfect pairing with the hearty Napa red wines.

After lunch, bidders and spectators mill into the auction space with hopes of securing a seat. Some have paper cups full of espresso in an attempt to regain focus after a morning of big wine and big food, while others sport heavy glasses of wine in a clear effort to throw inhibitions out the window. Winery representatives greet bidders as they arrive for one last round of back-slapping, hand-shaking, cheek-kissing and bear-hugging before bidding begins. Grand wines and even grander egos are on the line; the collective buying power of the audience is massive, with 88 retail outlets, 84 restaurants and 86 distributors / importers competing for 200 lots of wine. Every effort must be made to ensure success.

Premiere Napa Valley

Napa’s “Bounty Hunter” was among the biggest bidders at the auction this year.

Quirky statistics about Napa Valley appear on a slideshow on monitors around the room and John Mellancamp blares over the PA speakers. The mood is electric and iconic wine auctioneers Fritz Hatton and Ursula Hermacinski get the auction rolling. A joke is made about the economy returning to pre-recession highs and stock[piles] of Napa wine being at an all-time low, so the time to buy is now. Laughter ensues. Let’s do this.

Pine Ridge Vineyards is the Chair winery this year for Premiere, so it gets to go first, fetching $30,000 for 20 cases (one barrel) of 2010 cabernet sauvignon blend called “5 x 5″ in honor of the five classic Bordeaux varietals used. Duckhorn Vineyards ups the ante a few lots later bringing in $40,000 for 20 cases of its 2010 “Three Palms Vineyard” cabernet sauvignon blended with a little merlot from the same vineyard.

See the full post »

2 comments 03.01.2012 |

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