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Daily, our email inboxes are flooded with offers from wineries. Discounts, free shipping, virtual tastings, there are so many options being offered by wineries who are looking for new ways to reach consumers and sell wine while their tasting rooms are closed. It can be difficult to keep track of who is offering what but luckily, the associations for many wine regions have compiled comprehensives lists of what their member wineries are offering which I wrote about in the Napa Valley Register and am sharing here. In what seems like the blink of an eye, our lives have changed. As the coronavirus pandemic spreads across the United States, and the world, everything we are accustomed to has changed. The list of what we cannot do is too long to write, but one thing we cannot do is go wine tasting or attend wine events.
This story originally appeared in Wine Industry Network Advisor. Running a wine association takes a tireless multi-tasker. The job is a combination of strategy, business development, marketing, finance and politics. It takes understanding the needs of the association, as well as the community as a whole. It is about managing the desires of a diverse group, from large producers to small producers. morgenprofilepicture2 Morgen McLaughlin knows this all too well. She has spent time on both coasts running wine associations, first working with the Finger Lakes Wine Country Tourism Marketing Association in Upstate New York and now on the west coast as the Executive Director of the Santa Barbara Vintners Association. McLaughlin was raised in Connecticut, not exactly in wine country. But, in 1978, when she was six years old, her parents started a winery and vineyard on the family property. With a farm on the property, a winery was a value add to their lifestyle. From that point on, she grew up riding tractors and working harvest and all associated wine activities. In response, McLaughlin had no interest in working in the wine industry. “I wanted to do the opposite,” she explained. “I wanted to get off the farm and get away from family so I went to school in Boston and studied to be high school English teacher.”
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