Wine & The Virus
Posted On March 29, 2020
With the recent pandemic outbreak effecting civilization and commerce on every street corner and neighborhood in every part of the world, jobs and life itself is being affected like nothing we have seen in modern times. With situations growing daily and no end in sight, a return to normalcy will not be counted in weeks or months, rather likely in years and decades.
When it comes to the subject of wine, the verdict is still out on what will happen in the long term. With restaurants closed to public seating, their only viable means of supporting their business is by carry out or delivery service only. It may keep their food supply afloat and a few workers still employed but their business model which relies on alcohol sales to support more than half of their revenue, remains to be seen if they will be able to come out of this crisis still in business.
Wine bars are in the same boat, except for the fact that they cannot sell wine by the glass. Some have resorted to selling wine by the bottle with delivery service available but why would the wine buying public be foolish enough to purchase wine from them at their normal mark up of 3 to 4 times wholesale pricing when they can get it at their local wine shop or food service store at a fraction of the cost.
Many independent wine retailers have remained open and/or offering free delivery on your wine purchases. From talking with some shop owners, business is up for them in these trying times. People who ordinarily go out for dinner and purchase wine in a restaurant setting are now cooking at home or accepting take out delivery. If they do not already have a cellar stocked with their favorite beverage, it’s the local wine shop who can supply their demand.
Large markets that are essential and remain open and are the main source for needed nutrition. Meat, fish, dairy, grain, fruit, vegetables, and while there, one stop shopping also includes wine on everyone’s list. The daily routine of food and wine seem to be at least one bright spot in everyone’s daily life.
The above situations of everyone still being able to purchase and enjoy wine on a daily basis can be looked upon as one small positive. But there is one negative side that I would like to bring to light: wineries and winemakers.
In the past week, I have spoken with many in the industry, and though many see these uncertain times as a boon, there are also those who see it as an impending natural disaster. Those smaller mom and pop wineries who produce less than 5000 cases annually are high on the list who may not survive.
Many wineries and tasting rooms in California, Washington State, Oregon and throughout the United States are closed to the public. Many of the big corporate owned facilities with deep pockets will easily survive. Their market chain will keep churning and profits rolling in. The one’s I fear for are the small family owned operations who depend on tourist traffic at their facilities to keep operating costs flowing to survive on a daily basis.
Some are relying on shipping or local delivery sales to keep afloat. Without people being able to taste new products to determine what they would and would not like to purchase and take home, the crisis for them is growing as time goes on. I fear, without our help, they will no longer be in business or even worse, purchased and swallowed up by another conglomerate takeover. Their unique wines, not always touted and written about in the national magazines, are some of the best examples of grape varietals on the planet. Without them, the industry will look like the McDonalds, Burger King and Taco Bell of the wine world.
I implore our readers and subscribers of Winetime to help if you are inclined to do so. Contact your favorite wineries directly or order a few bottles of a few cases to offer your support. I’m sure it would be greatly appreciated.
Two of our favorite wineries and supporters of our cause are in desperate need of our support as well. Reaching out to good friends and winemakers Scott & Jana Harvey, who have 4 tasting rooms in California wine country which are closed due to the virus, have offered the friends of Winetime this special offer. If you have never tried their amazing wines in the past, trust me when I say you will be hard pressed not to find better wines at a greater cost per quality value. 30% off and free shipping? We thank them for their generosity. So please, if you would like to sample something new or reconnect yourself with some of the best wines on the planet, contact them by the information below and be sure to let them know you are a supporter of Winetime. Here is their offer to Winetime supporters…….
With all our tasting rooms shut down, we need to find new ways to get wine to people who enjoy them in these crazy times. .
“Scott Harvey Wines is giving you this special offer to the friends & family of Winetime.
Go to https://www.scottharveywines.com/Wines/Current-Vintages and enter code: SIP30 for 30% off wine with shipping included. If you have questions or prefer to call, 209-268-6211 is our dedicated phone line.
While we are all Sheltering In Place “SIP” we would like to offer our wines for SIPping to help you all get through this.
Scott’s recommendation: https://youtu.be/Kxo_nZWvkxQ
Wishing everyone to come through this in good health,
Scott & Jana Harvey
Closer to home, I would also like our supporters to reach out to one of our favorite Michigan based winery Russell B Gregory. They offer some of the tastiest and most unique award winning wines that no other winery in the state offers. For our supporters, mention Winetime and receive free in home delivery (within a reasonable distance of course) They can be reached at www.russellbgregorywinery.com or at (810)241-0945
Until things get back to normal and we are all virus free, be safe, stay healthy and enjoy your favorite wine.