Unified Wine & Grape Symposium, California's biggest annual wine industry get-together. I'd like to tap your brain beforehand.
The panel is called "How to Successfully Market Each Vintage, Despite the Weather." That's a polite way of saying, "How to sell wines from a vintage that certain publications have already trashed."
If you're wondering why they chose me, beyond my obvious physical charms, look no further than this post from last October titled "Hurray for California's 'bad' 2011 vintage!" My definition of a great wine is different from James Laube's (too soon to tell about Antonio Galloni).
As the only media member of the panel, that will be my main point: that while Wine Spectator and Wine Advocate are influential, there's an entirely separate market today of sommeliers and consumers who disagree with the notion that bigger is better. I know they're out there. But how does a winery reach them? And is it more important to divide the market, or to counter the mainstream impression?
Here's where you come in. The Gray Report has a great variety of readers, from inside the wine industry and out. I'd like to hear your take on this topic -- from any direction, whether you're a winemaker, sommelier, consumer or fellow wine writer. I will share your comments with the audience at the symposium.
Feel free to add Sacramento dining tips. I get a per diem.