May 18, 2010

Business time

There hasn't been much to report lately, though I suppose there a bunch of little things working mentioning. First, sort of big news from the Alcohol and Tobacco Tax and Trade Bureau, the federal organization better known as the TTB that licenses wineries and anyone else in the sin business. Yes, I received my TTB Basic Permit, required to sell my wine and the first domino in several at the state and local level to finalize all my licensing. Now all I need is approval for my City of Portland liquor license and the OLCC, our Oregon state overseers, should relent and approve me. Once that's done, I'll start hitting everyone up to buy my wine. Until then, get on my email list. Ha.

Meanwhile, I'm working on a side project where some partners and I will bottle and sell less expensive wines. I wish I could write more about all that, but for now know that I'm working on more than just my own boutique Pinot noir label. There are plans afoot.

There's good progress on my Pinot noir label design. I have a meeting later this week with my designer Angie Reat of Imprint Design. Angie's been great. I can't recommend her highly enough. We're down to two general concepts and with the next round of refinements, I think we'll be close to having our label. By June I want that done and graphics to put onto a new web site and email template. And business cards and everything else you can imagine.

All that leads me to the future of this blog and how it will work with my emerging winery website. I'm setting up my own domain name, so my web "address" will change, that's for sure. However, do I go with a web hosting service, or do I simply do a Wordpress blog that can essentially serve as my winery website. More and more people I'm talking to suggest doing that. Upside is simplicity and I like Wordpress a lot. Downside is that there may be limitations I don't know about or appreciate at this point. Also, I want an email platform with good analytics and I think I can get that in a package with a more traditional web hosting service like Squarespace. So what's better, what's simpler, what's better value for the money I will end up spending? If any readers have ideas, I'd love to hear them.

One thing I want to keep doing is blogging about what got me into all this craziness in the first place -- my interest in wine and what it teaches me. To that end, I'm really excited about writing a piece for Cory Cartwright's saignée blog for next month's 32 Days of Natural Wine. Past participants include Alice Feiring, Joe Dressner, Peter Liem and beautiful photo posts from Detroit's Putnam Weekly. This year may include all those and people like winemaker Eric Texier and Art of Eating author Edward Behr. What a tremendous idea Cory and I'm lucky to be able to participate. Now what should I write about? At least I have a few weeks to ruminate.


Paul said...

Hi Vincent,
a professional web/design firm and friend of mine that has experience with local wineries is Helsinqi. I think their profile would fit nicely with yours. The guy to talk with is Leo Daedalus and their site is


Vincent Fritzsche said...


Thanks for the tip. Leo's contacted me and we're meeting next week.

Hope you can make it to the garage tasting on Sunday.