Monday, April 27, 2009

Winemakers:plugged in

When we talk about Web 2.0, or Wine 2.0, we are often discussing connectivity. How often and how quickly do you communicate? Has the 2.0 world added benefits to your world. Are you able to do things now that you weren't before? Sometimes the answers are mixed, but there is a palpable sensation that everything is about to break wide open.
All at once, progressive minded individuals in the world of wine seem to to coming up with the same ideas at once. One such idea, is remote winemaker tastings.
Winemakers know their wine better than anyone, but their job lies in the cellar. This is what they are meant to do. The time on the streets, that's better left to salespeople. Winemakers have a bit of justified disdain for the whole dog and pony show. But their insights are invaluable. When winemakers discuss the wines they made, the result is a different level of understanding. Unfortunately, this usually meant either you going to see them, or them going to see you. For Ohioans, this isn't necessarily practical. So City Cellars in Downtown Cincinnati is teaming up with Niner Wine Estates in Paso Robles to offer a live feed wine tasting on Tuesday. Winemaker Amanda Cramer has an impressive resume, and this should be a fascinating interactive talk. They will be using Skype for the 2 way conversation. Currently, I am working with Niner to help develop new formats for such tastings that employ a more powerful and syndicate-able program. We are also working on a way to do live tastings, viewable by anyone over the Internet with the ability to do live chat during the event. This may not be totally revolutionary, but this application of the technology seems unprecedented. This could open a Pandora's box of amazing event opportunities. Can you imagine connecting with Winemakers a world away? Live feeds from vineyards? The possibilities are exciting!

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