I have been a fan of Rioja wines for many years…and yes they have been getting better and better. As the winemakers from the region have been jumping into the world market and develop a style made for the international wine markets their offerings have improved dramatically.
Decanter writers focus primarily on the UK market and secondarily on the EU markets…the US market lags…many of these wines are not easily available here…and we get that.
As Fermented Lifestyle’s influence grows we will develop lists for our members to help them identify THE where and when of distribution!
Look at the wine sales numbers as of last Friday (6/16)!
The last month (of May) saw a 16% growth in Direct to Consumer (DtC) as compared to the same period in 2016 and the 52 weeks period saw a 18% growth rate (just 0.32% of $2.5B). Even the IRI data shows the high end of the market going relatively strong. The $15 to $19.99 showed a 52 week gain of 11.2% and the above $20 showed a 9.6% growth so is very clear to me that Americans are drinking more and more good wine.
Yet the total wine sales for the 4 week period was up only 1.3% and the 52 week up only 3.6% to offset the gains mentioned above there has to be loses happening somewhere.
Not that I have access to the data but from reports I am hearing the restaurant wine sales are down considerably.
Americans are drinking more at home and they are better wines but they are drinking far less at restaurants?
I have personally seen (and heard from others) restaurants "dumbing" down their wine lists. Making them simpler with lower priced wines?
There is no empirical proof but the fact that more and more Americans have access to smart device apps that allow them to know what the retail price is versus what the restaurant wants to charge I believe is the primary culprit. When you didn't know how much a markup was being applied it was easy to accept but now that isn't true.
Offering wine lovers cheaper wines (but at the higher markup) isn't going to work either. Why don't restaurant owners get it...it is not the price it is the markup.
I recently read a post from someone who thought that it would become easier for small producers to get their wines into restaurants. Really? If they work on the same markup they are going to get the same results. Perhaps the logic is that individuals won't find those smaller producer wines in retail.
Every winery has a website!
Wine and food lovers don't mind paying a premium to have a wine served with their meal they just don't want to get a bath with it too!
Mainstream wine oriented businesses seem to be missing the boat completely. The busy passionate (affluent) wine lover who is willing to try around the world does want cheaper wine. They want easier access…they want more choices (not less)…they want knowledgeable people who can help them get want they want.
It is that simple folks.
I found this article (see below) about some of the “top” women winemakers…that is according to this article…they are certainly some of the best known. Their wines are outstanding make no mistake about it.
But there are many others emerging that we will try to bring to light…not just the most famous ones. Those that are earning recognition out of the spotlight but certainly winemakers who are worthy trying. They will not disappoint you if you try their wonderful wines!
Cynthia Cosco, Rickey Trombetta Stancliff and her daughter Erica (a mother-daughter team of winemakers) and Eva Bellagamba are just some of those we will tell their stories on the pages of Fermented Lifestyle!
I am sure that the powers to be at Constellation will tell the world that the wines from Schrader will remain the same...very high quality.
Yet I know big corproations...they love to put their imprint on EVERYTHING. The other problem is that as the competition increases there will be added pressure to capture every cent of profit and they will not want to disappoint their shareholders. They are publicly traded so everything is about satisfying shareholder expectations. Maintaining that premium edge and providing maximized profit to shareholders is a contradiction in my opinion.
What happens when BIG wine companies buy more and more of the Valley? Then what?? Is Sonoma next? Where to after that?
The Schrader family invested a lot of time, money, and sweat and blood into their business....if they want to cash in it is certainly their right...perosnally I hope that this trend ends quickly.
Cocktails can be good especially when you can indulge yourself in a group setting. But even better in my quiet reflective moments I am not going to “sip” a cocktail…I want something more.
This post from the Robb Report gives us insights into a Gin, a Vodka, a Rum, and a Tequila that is exactly the kind of spirits that I can kick off my shoes with and sit back and let my mind run free.
I know that primarily our focus is wine…the most sociable of alcoholic drinks…but there are times for something else. We don’t want our Fermented Globetrotters to be limited to any “one” thing.
Enjoy a sip of the “good stuff” here and there? Let us know about your favorites…send us some feedback and we’ll let everyone know your thoughts.
I promise you over the next 5 years wine lovers will hear more and more about this!
This also goes hand in hand with the desire on the part of wine lovers to know the ratings of specific wines based upon what their friends and peers say...less about what professionals think.
Professionals end up developing incredible palates... I know that my palate increased dramatically from all my professional tasting events. So how can the average (or even above average) wine drinker compare with people who taste wine every day from all around the world? Consumers are realizing that makes a difference… sometimes a BIG difference.
This is a prime motivation behind creating a strategic alliance with Quini Systems (our cool, sophisticated wine rating app—found under “rate me” tab) and Fermented Lifestyle Corporation.
Wine lovers will know (based upon their palates) whether or not they like a wine (their personal preferences) but remember the specific tastes beyond a few days is almost impossible…and after a month many are happy to remember the label…but share the story about a winery and they can embrace it and will remember it for a long time (maybe even forever).
This is just part of creating personal connection with individuals. No, you don’t need to connect with millions of wine lovers if you are a small producer…just need thousands who will love your wine…drink it regularly and buy it year after year.
The world of marketing in 2017 and beyond is (and will be) far different for smaller wineries than ever before.
Does it get any better than a warm summer's day, good wine along with fresh summertime fruit?
Why not combine them all into a wonderful mixture of sipping and noshing all at once!
About 20 years ago Iwas in a Spanish restaurant in Florida and ordered a picther of sangria...it was soooo good that I asked for the recipe...every time my wife and I make that mixture people rave about our sangria. Lookiing at the recipe in this post reminds of that recipe..but it is different but looks fantastic.
The secret is to start with inexpensive wine..don't make the mistake of thinking that if I use good wine it will be even better...doesn't work that way. A 2nd insight is to make the sangria the night before...it allows time for the juice from the fruit to mingle with the wine, the triple sec, and the brandy...and SAVE that fruit...it might be one of the best fruit experiences you've ever had.
Go ahead...make a pitcher...kick off your shoes (if you even have them one) and pour yourself a tall one!!!
The link below to the article from the Robb Report mentions what they feel are 5 of the best white wines in the world. Of course the Robb Report has an impeccable reputation around the world. Yet in e-searching for each of these wines here in the US the availability is extremely limited.
We want our members to be aware of the top wine critics opinions as to their feeling about great wines, but we will also let our members know about availability.
In the future our business plans to develop in a way to close the gap on this issue.
This report from the SOMM Journal reports that there is a strong surge in sales of wines from the Rioja region. This is one of the key regions for Spanish wines with broad distribution. Expect to see wines from other Spanish regions riding the coattails of Spain's most famous area.
Look to Rias Baixas, Jumilla, and Priorat to begin showing up in more places here in America.