The SOMM Journal

August / September 2017

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Page 10 of 148

10 { THE SOMM JOURNAL } AUGUST/SEPTEMBER { editor's notebook } I WENT BACK TO A RESTAURANT recently for the first time in about a year. I remembered that the last time I had been there, I was impressed by the wine list—the diversity, range and choice it offered. This time, it was as if I were at a different restaurant. The menu was essentially unchanged, but the wine list was completely different. Although the somm was still the same, the list was totally unrelated to its previous incarnation. I asked the somm if there was a change in the concept. "No," I was told, "I picked wines that appealed to me based on what I was offered." Clearly, there was no master plan in operation; the list was totally random. A better way to build an effective list is to take a few preliminary organizational steps before making your final selections. First, based on storage space available, the menu and the level of sophistication of the restaurant, decide on how many wines to have on your list and what their price range should be. Then, without designating specific wines, map out the structure of the list. Since wines on offer change weekly, a generalized template is an efficient way to go. This way, when adding selections to replace wines that are sold out, you can maintain consistency. On your template be specific without limiting your choice too much. "A Dry Creek Valley Zinfandel to sell at $35 to $42," or "A fresh Dry Riesling, either domestic or impor ted, to sell at $28 to $37." Make up a whole list with descriptors such as these and the job of replacing wines that sell out is easy. This is not to say that the structure of your list is immu - table, but this template idea allows you to have a set core for your list while still allowing for considerable flexibility. Anthony Dias Blue How to Create a Consistent Wine List CORRECTION In the mezcal report in our June-July issue, Del Maguey Mezcal was mispresented. Del Maguey created the concept of single-village mezcal 20 years ago, and Single Village Mezcal is a trade - mark of the company. The name of the product was also misspelled; the mezcal referenced was the Del Maguey Single Village Mezcal San Pablo Ameyaltepec. THE WILLAMETTE VALLEY Wineries Association (WVWA) and Oregon Pinot Camp (OPC) have hired a new Executive Director. Morgen McLaughlin assumed the position on July 24, taking command of these two key industry associa - tions that have helped establish Oregon's Willamette Valley as one of the great wine producing regions of the world. As Executive Director of the WVWA, McLaughlin will orchestrate industry events, collaborate closely with member wineries, be the lead spokesperson of the trade and help publicize its many produc - ers, their unique stories, and most importantly, their wines. She will also oversee OPC, an annual trade-only educational experience drawing influential trade from around the globe. McLaughlin was previ - ously Executive Director of the Santa Barbara County Vintners Association and President and CEO of Finger Lakes Wine Country Tourism Marketing Association, where she led efforts to draw attention to the wines of the New York region. "I could not be more excited and honored to join the WVWA and the tremendous Oregon wine family it gets to promote," says McLaughlin. "The growth of the scene has been nothing short of impressive, and I am ecstatic to see the area's already remarkable reputation only grow in the years to come." The WVWA represents more than 230 wineries and tasting rooms spanning the 100-mile valley from Portland to Eugene. Willamette Valley Wineries Association Names New Executive Director Morgen McLaughlin. PHOTO COURTESY OF WVWA

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