Sunday, January 25, 2009

Clogging & Crypto-kibitzing

Change. Yeah, everybody’s talking about it. From what I’ve seen and heard this week, though, my takeaway is this: Everybody wants everything around them to change, as long as they don’t need to be doing any of the changing themselves.

So, a different era, but the S.O.S.? Good luck with that one, people of earth.

Now we've got all these newbies on board, some of ‘em who want to serve man, and already folks are trying to figure out ways to snake out of the commit. Tryin’ to make it real, compared to what?

OK, I’m ready to change, or else. Straight on down the line, folks. Down-size? Will do. Figure out how to sell wine to a society not driven by consumerism? We might not sell 20% more a year for the next seven years, but I bet we will give the wine drinkers a better experience. It’s already going in that direction anyway, so we might as well step out of the showers and break out of the camp. It’s going there.

A while back I wrote that I was scaling back to two posts a week @ On the Wine Trail in Italy because of another blog-gig in development. Well, it’s up and running, called The Blend. Right now I’m doing a bit of “repurposing” on it, but the (self-imposed) parameter is to provide pertinent wine and spirits info to my colleagues in the day job, as well as anyone else who’d like to surf on by. So now, I’m a clogger too. We’re still getting our legs, but the reception (and the traffic) has been way over my expectations. I guess we done had us another baby, ma. Anyway, check it out, The Blend.

I seem to be obsessed with older television and motion picture themes lately, sorry about that. My sidekick in Austin, Dr. J, ("Hutch") has been passively encouraging me to run this out of my system. Like it has been said so many times before, it ain’t dogma, it’s just a blog, ma.

The V.P.'s and general sales managers have been streaming out of the office to California for the end of year sales and performance reviews with the wineries, and some of them have been coming back saying we here in Texas have been showing the rest of the country how important tenacity is in these times. Having lived here all these years, I’m not sure if it is just plain stubbornness or perhaps not buying into the bicoastal American dream. You know, lots of credit, other people’s money, buy low, sell high. Or don’t even buy, just take the money and tell folks how great everything is, and don’t invest a penny. Well, we here in flyover country probably have a retinue of sins, venial and mortal on our bloodied hands, but for the time it looks like we made it through the year with only flesh wounds. We’re talking sales now folks. But 2009 is barreling past us and things are s.l.o.w.i.n.g. d.o.w.n. Duh.

I don’t mean to rant, but last week I was in two steakhouses and two Asian restaurants. The Asian places had food that seemed to be more serious. Smaller portions (and prices) higher sourcing and quality. I had a Carbonara at one of them that was better than any Italian place nearby. And I had a Bolognese at an Italian-inclined (?) concept that had nothing to do with Bolognese. So, go figure. I’m crazy. Hey, while my Austinopoli co-conspirator wants to make the world safe for Italian wine, I just want to serve man. With as little salt and garlic as possible.

I had a Petite Sirah from Seghesio and a Zinfandel from Pellegrini Family Vineyard this week and I loved them both. This week over a corked bottle of 2001 Brunello ( it said it was 100% Sangiovese on the label, I kid you not! ) and a better 2004 Sagrantino I chatted with Robert Pellegrini about the history of Italians growing wine in early Californian and the impact it has had on the industry. It’s part of research I am doing for a presentation in July in Sacramento for the Society of Wine Educators Conference.

So, that along with folks in Washington getting to keep their Blackberry to communicate with the outside world, that’s about all these is in my little Kanamit Cookbook tonight.


Buon Appetito!



6 comments:

Marco Panificio said...

A little cryptic, non?

Tracie B. said...

yes marco, very much a departure from the norm.

Anonymous said...

The bigger question for everyone, from home builders to winemakers, is how to downsize the economy without crashing the economy so that it begins to resemble something sustainable for the long haul.

Do Bianchi said...

I believe — for all the points you've been touching on your blog recently — that now is one of the most exciting times in the history of Italian wine in this country...

please don't ever apologize for digging the old movie and tv themes... the answers to tomorrow's questions lie in the past... at least in my book...

and hey, pard: are you ever gonna let me drive the gran torino?

and btw, your karma just ran over my dogma...

I'm entirely nonplussed by the pictogram...

Do Bianchi said...

And congrats on the ITC award! :-)

BK said...

It's about time you addressed such ancient media pictures!

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