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Field Notes~Top Winery Events You and the Crew Need to Hit This Summer~Get a Taste of Long Island's Flourishing Wine~Canned Wine Comes of Age~Health-Conscious Millennials and Their Impact on the Alcohol Industry

Field Notes~

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As you might have guessed, those of us working here at the New York Wine & Grape Foundation are very proud and passionate about New York wines and our mission to serve our community to the best of our ability. As someone who was brought on to help increase the value of and awareness about Foundation membership, it makes me proud to see that the more wineries and grape growers learn about the benefits of membership, the more they feel that joining is the right decision to make. Since September of 2017, we’ve had over 55 wineries and 13 growers either join for the first time or rejoin Foundation membership after more than two years as non-members!
We appreciate you giving us a chance to re-define and enhance our existing programs and create exciting new ones. Your guidance has helped us to become a more valuable partner. Because of you, we can continue to grow programs, engage more members, and invest in initiatives that yield the most return to you.
One of the things that we know means the most to you, in fact, is the ability to diversify sales. Though many of you sell most of your wine out of the tasting room, we know it is becoming increasingly important to explore alternatives. And whilebolstering visitation and wine tourism across our state is an integral part of the marketing and sales matrix, it is incumbent upon us as a community to empower those that are ready to reach new domestic and international audiences, educate them about New York wine, and make sure those wines are available to purchase in those markets.
In the 2018-19 Program Year we saw a record 47 wineries participant in our NY Drinks NY program and 31 wineries participate our Export Program. As you saw from my colleague Paul’s Field Notes last week, our marketing initiatives in France and England in Mid-May made waves in terms of international awareness. Not just awareness amidst the trendy restaurants, high-level sommeliers, or international importers – though thatis happening. We are talking about legends like Steven Spurrier and Jancis Robinson, along with and up-and-coming new influencers, recognizing New York wines for what they are… elegant, high-quality, unique wines, born boldly out of passion and an understanding for the land.
As we saw at Vinexpo Bordeaux, New York wines inspire. The mere mention of New York, or the sight of iconic images associated with our state, inspire bright eyes and bated breath and a barrage of questions about our winemaking region, grapes, and our talented winemakers. As representatives of wines from the United States, our team members were asked to meet with and give feedback about international tradeshows and the state of the industry to both Christophe Navarre, Vinexpo Chairman and Jamie D. McCourt, the French Ambassador.
New York Wine & Grape Foundation exhibit at VinExpo Bordeaux 2019.
Welcome to NY Wines! Winemakers Staci Nugent and August Deimel.
The small but mighty team was a well-oiled machine with winemakers August Deimel of Keuka Spring Vineyards and Staci Nugent of Keuka Lake Vineyards; as well as Robert Madill, roving New York wines expert representing Glenora Wine Cellars. We were also joined by Paul Brady and Pascaline Lepeltier to provide New York Wine Seminars on May 14th. For those who sent wine to the show, we have a follow up resource ready to send out to you so that you may get in touch directly with importers interested in your product. 
The VinExpo Team representing New York (l-r): Valerie Ross of New York Wine & Grape Foundation, August Deimel of Keuka Spring Vineyards, Bob Madill of Glenora Wine Cellars, Pascaline Lepeltier of chepika, Stacy Nugent of Keuka Lake Vineyards, and Paul Brady of New York Wine & Grape Foundation.
No matter what happens, one thing is clear. The spotlight has turned in our direction again and it’s shining bright on New York wine. At the Foundation, we know it is our responsibility to be ready for a close-up.  As we prepare to relaunch our own brand and improve the brand representation of New York wines on the worldwide stage, we are always keeping our eye on the goals of our community and our members – branding, awareness, and sales.
For those of you planning to participate in the new Export Program calendar year, activities begin on July 1st. You can expect to see the announcement in your in boxes during week of June 10th, and a draft calendar of events for our target markets will be posted online by July 15th.
We realize that each of you are in different places in your business life cycle when exploring the Export market. It is our goal to have resources for each of you: whether it is guides for quality, production, price point expectations; labelling and compliance support for those starting to investigate exporting; feedback on submitting wines for tradeshows and trade tastings that are designed to help us put our best foot forward; connecting wineries with one-on-one opportunities in markets to meet influencers, trade, agents and buyers; coordinating and planning shipping and other costly logistics; as well as, providing consumer touchpoints and sales opportunities on the ground, we will have all of these tools in our toolbox.
If you’d like to learn more, we encourage you to start researching now about each of our target markets: Canada,Asia, and Western Europe, by listening to these pre-recorded webinars.
For those of you interested in learning more about the domestic markets and our NY Drinks NY program, sign up is happening now.
For now, if you have any questions about how to make the best use of your Foundation membership, the Export Program or NY Drinks NY, please feel free to contact me. We are looking forward to a new year of exciting marketing programs across New York, the United States and abroad. We would love to take you with us on this journey!
Valerie Ross, Director of Member Relations & Development
New York Wine & Grape Foundation