New York Wine & GrapeThe Wine Press



The Press Deck - 10/9/2019 | Field Notes: Boldly, Evolving!

Field Notes...

From Robert Ketchin, Ketchin Marketing

Merriam Webster says EVOLUTION is the process by which new species or populations of living things develop from pre-existing forms through successive generations.  
Alternatively, from a business perspective, EVOLUTION is a process of continuous change from a lower, simpler, or worse to a higher, more complex, or better state: simple said as GROWTH or UNFOLDING.
It has been over 25 years since I had the pleasure of first working with the New York Wine & Grape Foundation team and the early pioneers of the New York wine industry. In fact, I can even go back over forty years to the mid seventies when I had the pleasure of visiting Dr Konstantin Frank and tasted vinifera wines with Dr Frank from tanks and barrels in his barn!
Since those early days I have had the privilege to work alongside so many of you as owners, winemakers, sales and marketing specialists. During this time I have learned to appreciate the nuances and differences of New York’s wine regions and the unique qualities and styles of varietal wines that nature weaves hand in hand with their creators. Striving for perfection, passionate to achieve the pinnacle of “Best Wine in Class” or a 90+ score or perhaps much more rewarding just a few simple words “I love this wine”! 
Deep down I can appreciate that it has not been easy and that the commitment and hardship of owning a winery is extremely demanding on all your lives - financing, cash flow, staffing, weather effect of frosts, floods, drought, and the ups and downs of the economy and tourism…. all impacting the bottom line. 
The biggest conundrum however must be the product …. THE WINE! What should I grow, what style should I make it, what should my label look like, where is the consumer at, who is my target market, do I focus on farm gate or sell into the urban cities or even consider export? All major questions that continue to challenge us as the demographics change and consumer tastes for wine EVOLVE!  
Since the mid 60’s New York wineries have planted and replanted several times. Labrusca to French American Hybrid to Vinifera and now one more time to the ideal vinifera for the current wine lover. Examples would be Chardonnay out and Rose in! Pinot Noir less and Syrah or Cab Franc more.
As the boomers retire and the Gen X and millennials develop their palate for fine wines we need to be constantly on the move to appeal and compete in each of the wine categories with the right wine and THE RIGHT LABEL! 
Like fashion and design, always on the move, the next generation millennials are quickly changing things up... from lifestyle to politics to traditional practices of wine purchasing. So, we must adjust our images, stories, product styles and perceived value to be compelling and meet their expectations. New York wineries and industry are doing that and more, both individually and collectively. 
Kudos  to the FLXcursion team - for daring to invite the world to compare and taste our New York Rieslings in the same arena as the very best Rieslings of the world, Mosel, Alsace, Oregon, Australia, and Ontario. For daring to open our wineries to host amazing master classes and gourmand lunches. For daring to put our restaurants on notice to host and entertain the best of the world wine media and sommeliers.  


Kudos  to the wineries that have stepped up to share their wines and ship samples to Ontario Canada for an LCBO buyers / wine media / sommelier tasting recently. Not giving up and still believing that we can build the NY wine category together in Ontario. I was extremely proud of showcasing your wines and I had the pleasure of receiving many compliments. Whatever transpires it is a brave step and one we can be very proud of, please take a moment and be proud with me. 


Kudos  to your leaders at the New York Wine & Grape Foundation for bravely stepping out and asking the best designers in New York state to come forward with new ideas on branding New York Wines. To compete in the global wine world today, New York must collectively and individually step up and shift your image if you are going to be heard and respected by the next generation of wine lovers.
The new branding, "Boldly, NY.” is a big step in the EVOLUTION of the New York wine image, appealing locally to 20 million New Yorkers, as well as wine enthusiasts around the world. Evolution is change… an unfolding! 
New York, you are now free of the shackles of tradition and familiarity. Welcome to the world of creativeness and inspiration and the exciting times ahead as we embrace the millennials. 

Robert Ketchin, Ketchin Marketing

Representing New York Wines in Canada

Industry News...

Schumer Pushes to 'Crack Open Canned Wine Production' in the FLX

Senate Minority Leader Chuck Schumer visited the Finger Lakes last week to announce that he is pushing for the trade and tax bureau to allow the manufacturing of wine in single cans. He finds that this will be beneficial to not only the consumers, but also to all of the local wineries who wish to sell these cans. Read more.

Top 100 Best Buys of 2019

wine bottles We all want to find a fantastic bottle of wine that doesn’t break the bank. But with an ever-growing selection, how do you decide? A catchy label might draw attention, but you know that what really matters is what’s inside the bottle. That’s where Best Buys come in. Priced at $15 or less, these are quality-driven pours that provide the most bang for your buck. Read more.

What is Piquette? The Next Big Thing for Natural Wine Fans

While keeping up with the trends that abound in the world of wine is an endless task for a consumer, no one is as responsible for that upkeep as the sommeliers, beverage directors, and wine shop staffers constantly fielding queries about what to drink right now. And what’s everyone been sipping lately? Well, if you ask those very wine professionals, it’s skin-contact— or “orange” — wine. So, what comes next, trend-wise, after skin contact? Read more.

Business of the Week: Vineyard View Winery

Adam Folts is no stranger to vineyards, having spent 12 years or so working on the family farm while he was growing up near Penn Yan. He never really appreciated the result of that work — making wine — until he was an adult. He came to that realization while working at a winery — in Texas of all places. Folts spent four years in the Air Force, later joined the Air National Guard and was stationed in Texas. He was living there with his soon-to-be wife when he made what turned out to be a life-altering decision. Read more.

More headlines...

Preservation at Forefront of McCall Wines’ Cutchogue Tasting Room

Women of the Vine & Spirits Announces List of Leaders in the Alcohol Beverage Industry

Better wine tasting through technology? FLX Winery Gives it a Try

Veraison to Harvest 2019 Update #5

Member Corner...

NYS Joint Senate and Assembly Public Hearing on Recycling

Monday, October 21, 2019 11:00 AM EDT This hearing is being sponsored by the NYS Senate and Assembly Environmental Conservation Committee Chairs to hear testimony from stakeholders on the current recycling markets, municipal recycling, and future recycling efforts.  This will likely include discussions on expansion of the Bottle Bill to include deposits on wine and liquor bottles.  Anyone wishing to provide testimony may do so in person or in writing. See more details here.

Access to Capital: Food, Beverage, and Agricultural Enterprises

Thursday, October 24, 2019 10:00 AM - 2:30 PM EDT Are you in the food, beverage, or agricultural industry in New York City? On Thursday, October 24th, attend a FREE workshop sponsored by the Federal Reserve Bank of New York, the Department of Agriculture & Markets, Hot Bread Kitchen, SlowMoney NYC, Hana Kitchens, Bronx Cookspace (WHEDCO), the Entrepreneur Space and Brooklyn Small Business Development Center.

Get the inside perspective from experts about:

  • How to deliver your pitch and be attractive in the eyes of a lender
  • What type of financing is most appropriate for you
  • What lenders look for in potential borrowers
  • Alternatives to traditional bank loans

Lunch will be provided. The event is free but registration is required. Register here.

Register for the 2019 AWS Commercial Competition Now

The American Wine Society is the largest consumer based wine organization in the United States. This Commercial Competition will provide national recognition for your winery among both consumers and wine industry professionals.  Judges for the AWS Commercial Wine Competition include both AWS trained and certified judges and professional experts from all aspects of the wine industry. This intense curriculum includes a disciplined approach to wine fault identification, component analysis, winery operations, viticulture, wine history and appreciation and of course, extensive wine evaluation and rating. Pre-Registration is required and entry forms must be received by October 25, 2019. Enter here.

New York Wine Classic Awards Presentation Event

The staff and board members of the New York Wine & Grape Foundation would like to invite you to join us as we congratulate the winners of the 2019 New York Wine Classic. We are pleased to announce that the major awards will be presented on November 7th at Wagner Vineyards hosted by the New York Wine & Grape Foundation.
This event is free and open to all, however, capacity is limited. Please register early!

B.E.V. NY Conference-Workshop Topics Survey

This year the New York Wine & Grape Foundation is proud to be coordinating and presenting the Business Day portion of the  B.E.V. NY Conference  in Rochester, NY. The event will take place from February 26th-28th, 2020. This conference brings together New York’s wine marketers, makers, and growers from all over the state for three days of concentrated educational sessions and networking.
We are looking forward to seeing many of you there. In order to ensure that happens, we would like to know what workshops and topics would make B.E.V. NY the most valuable conference for you.
Please complete this  quick survey  by  October 11th  to let us know how you’d like the Business Day to be presented, what topics would be most valuable to you, and what potential keynote speakers would get you to Rochester, NY in the winter!

New York Wine Classic Pairing Dinners

wine bottle illustration

Don't miss our New York Wine Classic "Best of Class" Winners paired with a delicious five course dinner at The Marshal in Manhattan on October 23rd, at 6:30PM. 

Almost 900 wines were entered into the 34th Annual New York Wine Classic on August 6-7th, 2019. The five Best of Class winners, including Governor's Cup and Winery of the Year, are:

Cost: $110 per person. Members Save $15.00 per ticket. Email Julie Hosbach, Education & Member Services Manager, for the coupon code to enter when you order tickets online.

*Additional pairing dinners will be held in Utica and Albany in November.

Buy Your Tickets!

Don't miss our New York Wine Classic "Best of Class" Winners paired with a delicious five course dinner at The Tailor & The Cook in Utica, NY on November 5, 2019 at 5:00pm.
The Tailor & The Cook is farm to table: "Obtaining local products is of utmost importance to us. Sourcing ingredients from neighboring farms allows us to serve the freshest possible dishes, promote the local economy, reduce our carbon footprint, and ensure the food we serve is produced with methods we support. We believe that choosing local food enhances the environmental and economic health of our community." They carry only New York wines and are the honorary recipient of our 2019 Restaurant of the Year award!
Cost: $100 per person. Members Save $10.00 per ticket.  Email  Julie Hosbach, Education & Member Services Manage r, for the coupon code to enter when you order tickets online.
*Additional pairing dinners will be held in Albany and Long Island. Stay tuned!