The SOMM Journal

February / March 2017

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4 { THE SOMM JOURNAL } FEBRUARY/MARCH 2017 PUBLISHING MAGAZINES FOR THE wine, spirits and hospitality industry is one of the more privileged professions when it comes to seeking out subject matter. After all, we do have to sample what we write about and are "required" (!) to meet some of the most talented people in our trade universe. Could I make oil rigs or cellular research sound as glamorous? Probably not. But after more than a decade in the business—our sister publication The Tasting Panel is celebrating its tenth anniversary this year, The Somm Journal is going into its third year under our ownership and The Clever Root is now almost two years old—we have 21 issues to contend with annually from our growing publishing group, and that means continually finding fresh content. We always strive to expand our horizons, from covering both fabulous and fledgling wine regions to profiling the venerable leg - ends in the field and up-and-coming players who are making their mark on the wine stage. But it's how we tell you these stories that keeps you coming back for more. There are various styles of communicat - ing these messages to you. Some are quite intricate and geeky (admit it—somms love geeky); some are colorful and awash with beautiful photos. Others take a more per - sonal Q&A approach. This year, more than ever, we are telling our tantalizing tales in person, and we'd love you to be a part of the ongoing conversa - tion. Please join us at one or more of these impor tant industry events in 2017—and please, feel free to send me an email for more information on any of them. We love hearing from you! Meridith May Hot Topics { from the publisher } How I spent my winter vacation: Tasting wines in Ballard Canyon with Kimsey Winemaker Matt Dees (left) and owner Bill Kimsey. See page 34 for the experience. World of Pinot Noir, Santa Barbara, CA (March 2–4) Paso Robles CAB Collective, Paso Robles, CA (April 11–13) Lunch with Wines of Cariñena: Atlanta (April 24), Austin (April 25) and Los Angeles (April 27) Cru Artisan College: Washington, D.C. (May 1), Chicago (May 2), San Francisco (May 3) National Archives Spirits Competition, Washington, D.C. (June 29) Seattle Somm Summit (July 9–12) Society of Wine Educators, Portland (August 10–12) SOUTHERN GLAZER'S WINE & SPIRITS has chosen the San Francisco Wine School to be an external education provider in California, with the first training program yielding record-breaking results. Last spring, 22 of the company's highest level sales professionals gathered at the San Francisco Wine School for its proprietary California Wine Appellation Specialist (CWAS) program. This program included 24 hours of instruction on the history, climate, soils, grape varieties and notable producers of California plus a sampling of over 60 representative wines. This was fol- lowed by the challenging California Wine Appellation Specialist credential exam. Southern Glazer's of California is invest- ing heavily in staff education. "Wine con- sumers are more knowledgeable than ever and we want our wine sales specialists to be the most knowledgeable in the business to help our customers deliver unique and enticing wine programs for the new gener- ation of wine consumer" says Eric Entrikin MS, SG of California's Director of Wine Education. "There is no other curriculum available that is comparable to the CWAS." To customize the learning experience for the company, San Francisco Wine School used mostly wines from Southern Glazer's own collection, but added a few surprises here and there to emphasize unique attributes of various areas. "Using wine from our own portfolio to illustrate the learning objectives was a great way for our staff to better experience and under- stand our portfolio—many of the samples became newly-discovered gems. The training gave perspective to why some of the wines were similar or different from the same varietal grown elsewhere and provided strong selling points and new ideas for enhancing our California offer- ings in the future," says Entrikin. San Francisco Wine School and Southern Glazer's Wine & Spirits Unite for Corporate Education PHOTO COURTESY OF SAN FRANCISCO WINE SCHOOL Southern Glazer's of California professionals trained at the San Francisco Wine School's California Wine Appellation Specialist (CWAS) program.

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