Home > Uncategorized > Brands, Polls and Pingu!

Brands, Polls and Pingu!

Air Hair Lair!  Say that quickly and think about it and you will sound like Patsy from Ab Fab!  In proper English then – hello there good people of from wherever you are.

I have had lots of comments and plenty of you are reading the blog, so many thanks to you al for taking the time to read what I have to say.

On the menu this week…the Poll from the last blog to see what you spend on wine, and a chance to talk about it.  A lot of stuff in the news at the moment around Big Brand vs. Small Brand – it’s all about who you trust and what you are led to believe when wine is marketed.  Plus some other nuggets of stuff and things that should keep you fairly interested throughout the next few paragraphs and 10 mins of your time.

Did you watch the Gary Vaynerchuk link that I posted in the last update?  What did you think?  He is potty but makes sense and talks to the listener on a level that is few and far between these days when it comes to reaching out to the general public and telling them about wine.  Something that there is a distinct lack of – and particularly in this country….although we can’t ignore Olly Smith (see video link) beaming with confidence and he talks about wine so passionately, it’s impossible not to be engaged in what he is saying.  Quick fact – he wrote the popular children’s animated program Pingu!!!

Right lets crack on with things.  Picture in your head, massive vats or tanks of wine being churned and stirred filtered and mass bottled a long factory style line.  Now picture this on a much smaller scale, where the grapes are crushed by foot, picked individually and by hand and where the volumes are much less.  Going by this sentence alone, which wine would you choose?  It’s probably a no brainer for most of you.  However, all is not as it first appears…I am humming the Twilight Zone music right now!!  Brands these days rely entirely on sales alone, which are backed by millions in marketing and advertising spend and developed and executed in a big big way!  BUT – there are some brands out there that still depend on the equity and the following created by either marketing the wine in a way that it is both a sellable ‘thing’ and also something that touches people…or letting the wine (product) speak for itself.  The latter very difficult to do and then maintain, but some do it well and one in particular, extremely well indeed!  Think Australian wine, what brand comes into your head?  I would say that quite a few people that I know do not tend to lean towards or even agree with wine as a brand, in the same sentence you could say a commodity.  I would be lying if I said one day I would like to buy a case of Bordeaux that will lay down for 20 years then sell on for a profit – it can make money and is an investment opportunity, so long as you are cautious about it and seek advice first!  Anyway, I digress again – wine brands are now something that is ‘part of the process’ and by that I mean it is embedded into people’s minds now that wine as a brand can be trusted enough for us to spend our hard earned cash on it – despite it being advertised and marketed in ways much the same as brands such as Coca Cola, Nike, Apple, Adidas and many more.  A brand is a brand is a brand – but do we feel comfortable with a bottle of wine being in the same category?  Well I have to say I am almost split really.  The opportunity for wine brands to showcase their product in a way that allows them, to spend X amount on doing so is a fair thing to do…providing the wine is as good as they say it is in the first place, and they have to be able to back up their claims and promises within their marketing campaigns.  It can be a fickle thing.  I could go on and on, but it’s an interesting topic, and worth the debate.  Let me know what you think about it – you guys are in a far better position than me given that I work with brands anyway – it’s your view that counts here.

Onto the poll from the last post – thank you for those that took part and I can reveal that the majority of us spend between £3.99 and £5.99 on a bottle of plonk.  Not surprising at al given the current climate but most surprisingly is this – there is a lot of quality that can be found in a wine that costs just £5.99!  As you are the ones that voted, you will know what you spend your money on, but here are a few of my suggestions of wines to try over the coming weeks that’ll get your taste buds going:

‘Les Galets’ Cotes du Rhone £5.99 (Majestic) – This is a gorgeous, succulent Côtes du Rhône, showing superb notes of red and black berry fruit flavours and a warming hint of spiciness. The palate is full with soft, velvety tannins and a long satisfying length.

Garganega Pinot Grigio 2009 Albinoni £4.99 (Majestic) – A fresh crisp white wine with aromas of flowers and almonds and an elegant light palate which is refreshing and smooth.

Obikwa Rose 2010 – Aromas of plums, strawberries and spice are followed by a light to medium bodied palate of ripe red fruits.

Sticks Yarra Valley Chardonnay 2005 £4.99 (Tesco, Majestic, Oddbins) – Luxurious and creamy tropical fruit, with ample mid palate weight and structure, flowing seamlessly to a lingering sensuous finish.

Where can I get this from!!?? Can't find it anywhere

As ever, have a bang on these when you are next shopping for a decent value bottle!  My rule of thumb though on how much to spend is this – if I am going to someone’s for dinner or a party I will spend a couple of quid extra and go for something a bit more special – seek advice though and read the label – does it match what will go with the dinner, party food?  Is it something that the host will like?  If your answer is ‘I have no idea to these questions’ that’s perfect because you want to surprise them and let them and you try something different and exciting!

Pubs – we all like a nice pint or a glass of wine every other hour, sorry every other week, but what do you tend to drink?  My poll this week is despite what time of year it is, what you would normally tend to order at the bar.  See poll at the top of the page.

That’s it for this week (I will probably chuck a few things on during the week as per usual, but it won’t be anything too heavy I promise).  Keep tasting wine when and where you can and please leave me any comments you may have.  Thanks for reading and remember…wine is fun, fun is wine drink it young and when you dine.

*Special mention must go to Matt Boyman – lover of Hock!!  Dirty boy!*

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