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Black Cloud at Broadway Wine May 16

Date: Sat, May 9, 2009 Wine Tasting Winery Blogs Wine Business

We'll be pouring Black Cloud 2006 Pinot Noir at Broadway International Wine store on Saturday, May 16 from 4 - 7. There will probably be a hard-to-find Township 7 white as well.

If you're in the neighbourhood drop in for a taste and a talk.




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I'm your source for winery development consultation.

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Black Cloud in more places

Date: Fri, May 8, 2009 Wine Tasting Winery Blogs Wine Business

Black Cloud in more places means more Pinot Noir in more glasses

We're slowly adding to our list of retailers. Here's where you can get Black Cloud now:

Broadway Wine at McDonald and Broadway in Vancouver
Whatcom Wine & Spirits in Abbotsford
Village Taphouse in West Vancouver
Tumbleweeds just east of Kamloops
the Naramata Store in downtown Naramata
the LRS on Bowen Island.

Thanks for having some!

I'm your source for winery development consultation.

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Talking WIne and Social Media in Kelowna

Date: Tue, May 5, 2009 Wine Tasting Winery Blogs Wine Business

I've been invited to showcase my wines and co-host a general discussion on the BC wine scene, Web 2.0 and social wine media to a gathering at the Wine Museum on Thursday night (May 7. 2009)

I'll be leading the assembled through a selection of Township 7 wines I've made over the past few years and, of course, I'll sneak in my Black Cloud Pinot Noir as well.

During the tasting, Julianna Hayes and I will talk about what's new on the BC wine scene and where things are heading. We'll also discuss what we're doing with social media and let the crowd know about what we think works for wine people. We expect to have a little give-and-take and some questions to answer.

Interested? Call the wine museum directly for tickets 250-868-0441

I'm your source for winery development consultation.

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HOW do I order my own Black Cloud?

Date: Fri, Apr 3, 2009 Wine Tasting Winery Blogs Wine Business

Very easy.

To order Black Cloud 2006 Pinot Noir just contact us here
sales@blackcloud.ca

Your email will get the ball rolling.

You can also call me direct at 250-490-7314

The price is $25 per bottle. Plus .10 bottle deposit.

If you live in the following communities and order a case, I offer free door to door delivery on my schedule.
GVRD (excluding Bowen Island and Electoral Area "A")
Squamish
Whistler
Hope

On days when I'm in the communities above I will often Tweet (follow http://twitter.com/BlackCloudWine ) as I make my rounds
and I'll free deliver smaller quantities of Black Cloud Pinot direct to your door. Stay connected!

I'm your source for winery development consultation.

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BlackCloud.ca is up

Date: Fri, Apr 3, 2009 Wine Tasting Winery Blogs Wine Business

It's not going to win a bunch of awards for groovy websites but it's a starting point. We will be adding as we go and I have to thank the guys at VIN65 for their enthusiasm.

www.blackcloud.ca


Anybody who drops in for a peek can send us an email and request to be added to our mailing list.



That's the best way to keep informed about:


  • new wines we have planned

  • new locations to buy our Pinot Noir

  • restaurants where you'll find us on the list

  • events featuring our wines.

  • progress with our winery plans
  • how to become an angel investor


My wife and partner has been up in Kamloops this week and has done a great job meeting new customers and setting up accounts. We'll be letting you know where soon.


We met a ton of great people in Vancouver over the wine fest last week. We hope to have Black Cloud Pinot at a number of new locations soon.


Here's a couple of events that have crossed my desk lately that I recommend:


First, of course, one that I'm in. I'll be up in Kelowna joining Julianna Hayes of Vine Living at the next WEST (Wine Education Series of Tastings) event. It'll be April 16 from 7 to 9 at the Wine Museum. I'll present a flight of Township 7 wines and few others (maybe some Black Cloud) and we'll have a discussion on the wines and a few other topics like - what's new on the BC wine scene and how is social media affecting how we access our wine? We'll be pouring wine and sampling food. These are fun and informative events. Tickets are a great value at only $20 for museum members and $25 for non-members. Call the museum directly to reserve 250.868.0441


Can't beat the Kiwis for great wines. Love this event. A region very similar to what we have here in BC.


New Zealand Wine Fair Vancouver
Thursday May 28 2009 2.30pm-5.30pm VCEC WEST Vancouver Convention and Exhibition Centre 999 Canada Place To register or for more information on the wines and wineries, visit: http://www.nzwine-events.ca/


Next:


Not everyone knows the skinny on this up and coming region. This is a great opportunity to piggyback this event on the Okanagan Spring Festival. Easy to hit this event and still be in the Okanagan for other events.



Spring Release Event


Taste the Similkameen Terroir



Host:
Similkameen Wineries Association

Saturday, May 9, 2009



Time:
1:00pm - 4:00pm



Location:
Keremeos



Phone:
250.317.8796



Email:
info@similkameenwine.com


I'm your source for winery development consultation.

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Sexy video fun at the Vancouver Playhouse International Wine Festival

Date: Sat, Mar 28, 2009 Wine Tasting Winery Blogs Wine Business

Sean and Graham over at www.vinifico.com shot some fun video during the festival.
Check it out.

http://www.vinifico.com/?p=1506

I'm your source for winery development consultation.

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Gearing Up For The Vancouver International Wine Festival

Date: Fri, Mar 20, 2009 Wine Tasting Winery Blogs Wine Business

This is going to be a great week.
We're headed to Vancouver to attend the Vancouver Playhouse International Wine Festival, one of the biggest events of it's kind in North America. Thousands of winos will descend on the city to take in the offerings from scores of wineries. British Columbia is the feature region (for the first time) and Township 7 will have a table.
As Township's winemaker, I will be on hand for all of Thursday, Friday and Saturday. I will be pouring at the trade and public tasting sessions. Be sure to come by, chat and grab a sample.
Although Black Cloud isn't officially entered, it will have an incognito presence. Just ask me when we meet.

I'm your source for winery development consultation.

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Black Cloud making news.

Date: Thu, Mar 12, 2009 Wine Tasting Winery Blogs Wine Business

The Black Cloud wine team is back from their too-short vacation in Mexico and ready to roll.
We've started to distribute our 2006 Pinot Noir and we're really pleased with the reviews it's been getting.

Karen over at Winebard had this to say...

"A lovely example of new world Pinot Noir"

Kelly at Full Bodied noted ...

"Seek this wine out, it will reward you"

Kathleen at Between the Vines came up with this great food pairing and said . . .

Each sip made the food taste better, and each mouthful of food brought out the brilliance of the wine.

If you are seeking our wine you can find it at
Broadway International Wine store on Broadway at McDonald. Vancouver
Whatcom Wine & Spirits in Abbotsford

We're in the process of adding to this list. If you have a favourite wine-centric store that you'd like us to consider let us know. We're looking for progressive retailing partners to carry the Black Cloud line as it grows.

You can always order directly from us here. The Black Cloud team will be in Vancouver and surrounding area on Wednesday, March 18 making deliveries and meeting new clients. We can deliver yours too. It's a free delivery day for our greater Vancouver customers.

$25.00 bottle

In other news . . .

  • Talking to growers about interesting white varieties available to create a nice white for vintage 2009.
  • Considering a rose-ay.
  • Mulling the idea of sparkling Black Cloud.
  • Planning our public events schedule for spring and summer.

I'm your source for winery development consultation.

Read Full Wine Blog Post

Black Cloud making news.

Date: Thu, Mar 12, 2009 Wine Tasting Winery Blogs Wine Business

The Black Cloud wine team is back from their too-short vacation in Mexico and ready to roll.
We've started to distribute our 2006 Pinot Noir and we're really pleased with the reviews it's been getting.

Karen over at Winebard had this to say...

"A lovely example of new world Pinot Noir"

Kelly at Full Bodied noted ...

"Seek this wine out, it will reward you"

Kathleen at Between the Vines came up with this great food pairing and said . . .

Each sip made the food taste better, and each mouthful of food brought out the brilliance of the wine.

If you are seeking our wine you can find it at
Broadway International Wine store on Broadway at McDonald. Vancouver
Whatcom Wine & Spirits in Abbotsford

We're in the process of adding to this list. If you have a favourite wine-centric store that you'd like us to consider let us know. We're looking for progressive retailing partners to carry the Black Cloud line as it grows.

You can always order directly from us here. The Black Cloud team will be in Vancouver and surrounding area on Wednesday, March 18 making deliveries and meeting new clients. We can deliver yours too. It's a free delivery day for our greater Vancouver customers.

$25.00 bottle

In other news . . .

  • Talking to growers about interesting white varieties available to create a nice white for vintage 2009.
  • Considering a rose-ay.
  • Mulling the idea of sparkling Black Cloud.
  • Planning our public events schedule for spring and summer.

I'm your source for winery development consultation.

Read Full Wine Blog Post

Black Cloud Pinot Noir is Ready!

Date: Fri, Feb 20, 2009 Wine Tasting Winery Blogs Wine Business




It's been a great journey! And it's only just begun.




My wife and I took a situation that was really a kick in the backside and changed into an opportunity.




Back in August, when we lost a big consulting gig, we started thinking about how it sometimes seems like things are going great and then a black cloud moves in and rains on our parade. We talked long into the night about our dreams, where we came from, how far we've come over the years. We talked about our vision of owning our own winery and how that seemed to be just out of reach.




Then one of us remembered how every cloud has a silver lining. We decided then and there to make the situation work for us and not against us.




The wine I had been consulting on was excellent. I knew if I could get some we could use it to shoestring finance our dream. Long story short, my employer, Township 7 , agreed to help us establish the Black Cloud brand until we can spin it off into our own licensed winery operation.




We decided to adopt the Black Cloud name to constantly remind us that adversity makes us stronger and, even if things look bad sometimes, there's always a way to make things better.


In the vineyard, grape vines that have things too easy become insipid and unremarkable. The best fruit undergoes stress and trial.




We hope that our 2006 Pinot Noir exhibits all the character and complexity you'd expect from a hand-crafted, small lot wine. Made from vines that flourished while being tested by the elements.




The labels are on and we are ready to fill orders.


Simply contact us at:


blackcloudwine@shaw.ca




$25 /bottle

I'm your source for winery development consultation.

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Vineyard Winter Damage

Date: Mon, Feb 9, 2009 Wine Tasting Winery Blogs Wine Business

As pruning ramps up and people get out in the field, it's becoming more and more apparent that the cold snap in December has created some significant winter damage to grape vines.

Especially in the south part of the Okanagan Valley, vineyard workers are describing some blown primary buds and other damage.

As this time I don't have access to statistics but I will be checking and updating as available.

I'm your source for winery development consultation.

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Wine, Social Media, Sex and me - explained.

Date: Sat, Jan 31, 2009 Wine Tasting Winery Blogs Wine Business



I've avoided trying to explain or describe or adequately define what's going on with media, social media, this blog, my wine work, Black Cloud and me up until now because I wasn't quite comfortable with my abilities to tie it all together.




But thanks to an old joke that I've mostly forgotten, I think I can give it a try.




First, if you're reading this, you've got at least a passing acquaintance with social media. Mostly if not all web/internet based, it's all those things (platforms, applications) like Facebook, Twitter, MySpace, weBlogs that allow people (messengers) to inform others (message receivers) about stuff. Any segment of social media worth its salt then allows robustly active conversation around those messages.




How does that differ from old media?




Television, radio and print (even standing in the park on a soapbox) are mostly about one-way message delivery. The messenger crafts the message and then unleashes it on a mass audience, more or less confident that it will deliver the concept to most receivers most of the time.


As receivers, we just lie there and take it. Interaction has been limited to talk radio phone-ins, letters to the editor and heckling in the park.




So in the old joke there's a woman and a man having sexual relations and after it's over (as far as he's concerned) the man asks "Was it good for you?" (market research).


She responds, "Blue."


He asks quizzically, "Blue?"


She replies, "Yes, blue. I think I'll paint the ceiling blue".




Despite being confident he was delivering the right message, the messenger had no idea what the receiver was thinking or if she was even receptive. As they like to point out in the socmed world - message delivery = fail.




In new media, there's plenty of two-way communication from the start. Sure, things can foul up.


And social media won't replace old media but it will form a complimentary path.




By now you're aware that for the most part this is about selling things. But it's more than that. It's about giving people options in their lives and giving them choices. Its about those choices being qualified and vetted by their peers and other like-minded folk before committing resources. More than just dollars, those resources include time and something I like to call place of mind.




With so much information out there, having a band of brothers (and sisters) out there is like having your own socio-economic support group. Here's another sad attempt at an analogy.




Woody Allen is a recognized genius in world of cinema. However, there are varying degrees of Woody Allen fans. Some despise him and are not fans at all. Some will watch the movies but are critical of his off-screen life. Others will eat the whole buffet.




Social media allows you to surround yourself with the Woody Allen fans that approximate your degree of involvement. It's like going to the theatre and everybody is already on board the Woody Allen train. Not that there isn't the thrust and parry of criticism, but there is a genuine level of involvement not present in a random crowd.




As I prepare to launch my new wine brand Black Cloud, I'm considering what media to use to spread the word. In my mind, most old (mass) media is scattershot. You put out an ad in the paper or on TV and cross your fingers that you hit something. With social media, I think I can connect with people who have a degree of interest in what I'm doing. Using the right channels, I can talk to people who have already identified themselves as wine people. There's a focus in social media I don't see in mass media.




At least to start with, I'll be using social media almost exclusively to promote Black Cloud wine. I hope to make the suggestion, have a conversation and sell a few bottles of wine directly to the fans and winos who inhabit this world.




With a little luck, I'll avoid getting the answer "blue" when I ask the question.




I'm your source for winery development consultation.

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Wine Bloggers' Conference - It's a GO!

Date: Mon, Jan 26, 2009 Wine Tasting Winery Blogs Wine Business


Looks like I'm headed to California in late July.
I signed up and paid for the second-ever Wine Bloggers' Conference to be held in Napa and Sonoma counties this summer.
Last time they did this, a couple hundred wine nuts (more or less attached to the internet) showed up and traded ideas, got up to speed, tasted an enormous amount of wine and generally had the opportunity to understand each others' unique perspective.
Participants travelled from all over North America and the world. They were extremely well treated by conference organizers and sponsors.
I was not able to go. (insert pout here)
It was in late October. Around that time, we here in the Okanagan are buried scrotum-high in grapes. It behooved me to remain at my post.
Other people in more gentle climes on the production side of things made some noise and voila! - summer in California for this version.
I'm really looking forward to this. That's the essence of understatement. I will have the opportunity to show off my wines and indulge in the following recipe.
Blend:
1/4 geek
1/4 webjourno
1/4 wine maker
1/4 Californiaphile
Top with sun, pool, hikes, bikes and good food.
Serve.
I strongly encourage my readers and associated wine folks to consider attending. Attendance is capped at 250 and I understand the sign-up has been brisk.

I'm your source for winery development consultation.

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Newest Black Cloud Wine label mock-up

Date: Sun, Jan 25, 2009 Wine Tasting Winery Blogs Wine Business

As we continue to refine the Black Cloud wine label design we get closer to what we think will work.



Still not exactly what we will end up with but it's getting there. This cut-out is a bit kicked because we've been tossing it around and packing it from place to place.



The actual paper stock is a more glossy silver that will give some of the cloud detail more 'light'. The words 'Pinot Noir' will have more jump as well. The colour are close, but we still won't get the true representation until it start to roll off the press.



Since it's a Canadian label, we don't have to have the surgeon general's happy message. But we do have to adhere to regulations concerning English and French for certain key elements. Our final approval or checkpoint is the Canadian Food Inspection Agency which is now looking it over. They make sure all the federal regs are being met.



Anne O'Grady at Magpye Productions is who we are working with to get this done.

I'm your source for winery development consultation.

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