So here it goes!
Tuesday, June 17, 2008
It's been quite awhile since I came up with the concept for this website, until this time when I have formally launched it. Along the way there has been work, freelance projects, a videotaping, negotiations with crew, talks with wine industry professionals, and of course, the consumption of over two hundred different wines. For the latter, I have a ton of reviews to add based on notes from almost a year of weekly wine tastings.
In a way, this is like a child, not the first, and definitely not the last. In regards to the world of wine, this is just but one of several websites that I will launch, and it just doesn't end there; there are other offshoots on which I am working on bringing to light as well.
The most interesting thing about this whole endeavor is that most people [in the industry] see the monumental task that I have put before me, exposing African Americans to wine. Historically, the majority of wines that have enjoyed success at the hands of the African American marketplace have been those that have been sweet and inexpensive (Blue Nun, Black Tower, white zinfandel) or totally rotgut cheapo experiences (Boone's Farm, ChampaleThunderbird, Maneschewitz, Tiger Rose, Mad Dog, and the list, sadly, goes on and on).
However, there are others that realize that there also exists the possibility of phenomenal success if I can pull it off. Luka, who owns the PennsView Hotel which houses Panorama restaurant, knows the guy who came out with Lambrusco wine, which made a mint off of the African American consumer. All the while, there are a number of people that have offered to assist me in this venture, and I will definitely call on their help with hosting wine tastings and what not.
So this is it. I've gotten the second phone line, the office, and the second cell phone that will be used only for this venture. The press release has been written and already submitted through one service. Emails will go out throughout the week to friends, acquaintances and past associates. Next comes the business cards and the letterhead. I'll be actively marketing this site and adding new features as time goes by. And while I can't just keep funding this out of my own pocket, that means the next thing will be courting sponsors and advertisers.
So, here it goes, and let's see where the road leads.