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Alcohol’s Three-Tier System Is Losing Its Power to Impress Judges

It was really an unusual takedown of an attorney by a judge. It was something you don’t see (or hear) very often. And it indicates what may be a significant change in the way the “three-tier” system is understood by members of the judicial branch. The incident I want to draw readers’ attention to occurred during oral arguments at the 8th Circuit Court...

Let’s Talk About Wine and Smoke Taint…To The Media

BY JULIE ANN KODMUR, Wine Publicist TAINT TALK: YES! As Nike’s swoosh would say, “just do it!” Yes, I’m talking about whether you or your winemaker or your viticulturist should talk to the media about how you’re handling smoke taint. People have talked to the San Francisco Chronicle, to Wine-Searcher, to the Napa Valley Register. Traditional PR counsel...

Hey Wine Industry—Let’s Try to Dial It Back a Few Notches

Maybe you have noticed. It’s getting a little tense out there. Say what you will about the wine industry. It’s elitist! It’s systemically racist. It’s behind the curve technologically. It is regulated through archaic laws. One thing you must also say about the wine industry is that it is extraordinarily congenial. Yet this congeniality specific to wine,...

Recalling Justice Ginsburg as a Champion of the Wine Industry

Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg will not be remembered or revered for her 21st Amendment or Commerce Clause jurisprudence. Nevertheless, it’s true that Justice Ginsburg provided reliable support for the view that the 21st Amendment to the Constitution (ending Prohibition) does not give the states unlimited power to regulate alcohol sales and distribution...

President Trump Provides a Learning Moment For the Alcohol Beverage Industry

Duplicity. Hypocrisy. Lying. These are things of which every company, and certainly every beverage company, ought to try to avoid being accused. The recent revelation that President Donald Trump told a reporter one thing about the COVID-19 threat to Americans and told the public another thing about the potential impact of COVID19 on Americans brings...

The Coming Fight Over Ingredient Labeling On Wine

There appears to be a growing acceptance within the wine industry that not only ought wineries in the United States include ingredients on their labels, but that consumers are demanding it or will demand it. This idea is on the verge of becoming accepted wisdom. But is it true? And is it necessary? A recent survey by the Wine Market Council found that...

COVID-Driven Online Wine Sales Are Here To Stay Post Pandemic

We all know that during this pandemic, as wineries, bars and restaurants were shuttered, we saw a significant increase in online sales of wine, delivery of wine and direct shipment of wine. However, the question that has been nagging at me has been, once this pandemic is over what percentage of those who have increased their online purchases of wine...

What Would You Ask the Enemies of Wine Shipping?

If you had a chance to pepper with questions those folks who… -oppose interstate wine shipping -oppose consumers being able to access the wines they want but can’t find locally -have argued that direct shipping by wineries and retailers will not only harm children but also destroy the three-tier system -have taken every opportunity to tell courts that...

Michigan Wine Lovers Seek Choice…Oh, The Humanity!

Why do so many Michigan wine lovers choose to buy wine from out-of-state retailers rather than buy their wine from Michigan’s own retailers? This really should be the question that emerges from the hyperbolic, breathless headline issued by the Michigan Beer and Wine Wholesalers Association noting that “More than 480,000 Bottles of Wine Shipped Illegally...

A Wine Media Conference Takes On The Business of Wine

Wine writers of all sorts really ought to focus more on the business of wine, as W. Blake Gray, Felicity Carter, Elin McCoy and Cyril Penn are all about to explain at an upcoming virtual event of significance. As Alder Yarrow reminds, the Wine Media Conference is nearly upon us. The Wine Media Conference is the new name for the Wine Bloggers Conference,...

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