Tag Archives: regional wine week

regional wine

Drink Local Wine Week: Who knew it would outlast the organization?

drink localOnce more, evidence that local wine has become part of the wine mainstream — and a good thing, too

The last proper Drink Local Wine week was in October 2013; the organization went into hiatus the next spring. So what did my Drink Local cohort Dave McIntyre discover a couple of weeks ago?

“Someone just brought it to my attention that people still observe ‘Drink Local Wine Week,’ ” he wrote in an email. Google ‘drink local wine week 2017,’ and you’ll find a bunch of references. Go figure.”

So I did, and he was right – any number of listings on the first Google search page, an impressive performance for something that hasn’t been observed officially in four years. When Vinepair and Wine Folly mention your event, you’ve made the big time.

In this, regional wine has mostly become an accepted part of the wine landscape. In the dozen or so biggest regional wine states, the wines are on retail shelves – even grocery stores – and are represented by national distributors. In Texas, the Central Market supermarket chain is offering 20 percent off local wines for Texas wine month; yes, I bought a six-pack. This sort of thing was unheard of when we started Drink Local almost a decade ago. Most retailers and distributors treated local wine as if it was poisoned.

So, as Dave says, go figure: How did we do this?

• Publicity, publicity, and then publicity. The five Drink Local conferences, starting in 2009, made a tremendous difference in letting the world know local wine was a real thing that was worth learning about. Plus, they were a lot of fun.

• Tying local wine into the local food movement. This might have been our biggest accomplishment, since locavores don’t see wine as local in the way they see beer, spirits, and tomatoes. And too many, sadly, are horrible wine snobs who believe in points, Parker, and that all local wine is sweet and gross. But in Austin, for example, there is a local wine and food week featuring Devon Broglie, one of the country’s leading wine experts.

• Our friends at Google. We’ll take all the help we can get, even if it comes from the notorious Google search algorithm that figures hits are more important than whether something actually exists. And Drink Local has almost 10 years of hits on the Internet.

I found the announcement for the first Drink Local Wine Week in the blog’s archives – we’ve come a very long way in making local wine respectable since then, haven’t we?.

Why regional wine matters (and other good stuff)

DrinkLocalWine's fourth annual Regional Wine Week ends tomorrow, and the blog will return to its normal programming next week. Full disclosure: The Wine Curmudgeon, for those who haven't noticed, is a co-founder of DLW.

Interestingly, the blog set a record for cancellations this week, which is probably a good indicaton that regional wine still has a way to go to reach the winestream. But that's OK. I love a challenge. Wrapping up regional wine week after the jump:

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7 things you need to know about regional wine

Dlwbutton This is DrinkLocalWine's fourth annual regional wine week, which means all sorts of goodies and festivities at DrinkLocalWine.com, including the 47-word essay contest and voluminous links to regional wine stories, photos and interviews. The blog will be all regional wine this week; but don't worry, it won't hurt.

That's because, to paraphrase my partner in the locapour movement, Dave McIntyre, local wine is no longer a novelty. There are thousands of regional wineries, they're in each of the 47 states that aren't California, Washington, and Oregon, and the quality of the wine has improved dramatically in the past decade. But that doesn't mean that regional is as respected as it could be, or that nearly enough people know about it. So, after the jump, seven things you need to know about regional wine:

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My 47-word regional wine week essay

DrinkLocalWine is holding a 47-word essay contest to promote Regional Wine Week, which starts Sunday. My effort is below. It's not as good as Dave McIntyre's (but don't worry — Dave, my partner in locapour, can't win any of the terrific prizes we have this year). But I think it's better than my haiku last year.

The average August temperature in Texas is in the 90s, and 100 and higher is common. The Burgundy average temperature is 68. What's more surprising: That we have so much trouble growing chardonnay and pinot noir or that it only took 20 years to figure this out?

What’s wrong with regional wine

There has been a lot of love for regional wine on the blog this week, as the Wine Curmudgeon does his bit to support DrinkLocalWine.com's regional wine week. And rightly so — regional wine is a legitimate part of the wine world, and it deserves recognition.

But that doesn't mean there isn't room for improvement. There's a reason, even though the number of U.S. regional wineries has increased 10-fold since 1975, that California still produces 90 percent of all U.S. wine. Some of the problems, like distribution laws that favor large, national wineries, are out of the regional wine business' control. But there are other areas where regional wineries can help themselves. After the jump, a few thoughts about how regional wine can get better.

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DrinkLocalWine.com and regional wine week 2010

This is DrinkLocalWine.com's third annual Regional Wine Week, in which we highlight regional wine throughout the United States. Who would have thought, when Dave McIntyre and I came up with the idea 3 1/2 years ago, that it would have led to DLW, wine week, and our annual conferences?

The funny thing, as passionate as I am about local wine? I'm still surprised that so many other people care as much as they do about regional wine. During my time at the State Fair of Texas over the past couple of weeks, the crowds were good, lively and asked intelligent questions. And we got the usual questions from people about how to start a winery or a vineyard.

What is even more encouraging is that the next generation of wine professionals is so enthusiastic about regional wine. Just two examples from the Fair: Hunter Hammett, the 30-something sommelier at the Fairmont Hotel in Dallas, told how he served Texas viognier to a group of French guests — and how much they enjoyed the wine. Devon Broglie, the equally youngish wine buyer for Whole Foods in Texas and the Southwest, said that regional wine sales have flourished at Whole Foods during recession, despite the slowdown in the rest of the wine business.

There is more demand and more interest in regional wine than ever before. This week on the blog, I'll highlight regional wine — the good and the bad, because nothing gets better unless you understand what the obstacles are.