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Wednesday Afternoon Thoughts

Pinot Gris Grapes

Over the past few weeks I’ve been thinking of the differences in the industry caused by a series of rules and regulations, many aimed at stopping organized crime close to 100 years ago and how they continue to make certain aspects of the industry untenable.

I mean, direct to consumer sales continues to skyrocket as wineries increasingly put themselves at the forefront of the 3 tier system, while distributors largely see their market share being eaten.  I think it’s a long term, great thing for the industry.  A wine club like my own only exists, if I can deliver wines that are better than your local store.  I do that by spending time in wine country. There’s always going to be retail stores, but they’re being pushed by wineries taking more direct sales and also by encroachment by grocery and other stores as well.

It’s a fascinating time to be the wine industry as we work to figure out how consumer preferences will change the entire nature and scope of what we do, likely for the next 50 years.

Now, if we could just get some common sense laws on the books to allow it all……that’s a tale for another day though.

Here’s some of the other wine industry stuff I’m debating:

  • Has the rise of Washington Cabernet Sauvignon cut into California market share at all?
  • Has the rise of Oregon Pinot Noir cut into California market share of late?
  • Where does California go from here if the answers to both above are yes? Rhone varietals?
  • The Other 46 is a real thing.  Who’s most likely to step out of that trap though? How?
  • Do vintners associations and marketing groups of wineries work?
  • How the hell is everyone selling so much Chardonnay?

Ok, so I won’t do too much of this, but there’s a lot going on.  A lot of moving parts in the industry.  I don’t want to swept up in it, as much as, making conscious choices given the constraints

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