Wine and Spirits lead to spirited discussions!
On the show Bill Hirsh of Malibu Estate Wineyards and Keith Saarloos of Saarloos and Sons, come to engage us in an impassioned discussion about marketing philosophy for wines. The two California wine makers have big flavor in their barrels and big opinions that they do not shrink from. Far from your standard snooty wine talk, our group discuss new models of business and knowing your motivations in the face of the market. Brace yourself for uncontained opinions!
Keith Saarloos is the general manager, winemaker and chief bottle washer at Saarloos & Sons Co. a small boutique farming and winemaking operation in Santa Ynez, Ca.
Bill Hirsh runs winemaking and sales efforts at Cielo Farms, a Malibu based wine operation that he operates with his brother Richard and Sister-in-law Diana. Cielo focuses its efforts on unique blends from in and around the California landscape
00:01 Welcome to the Wine Down
00:48 Introducing Bill Hirsh and Keith Saarloos.
01:36 Booze News (Starbucks serving alcohol, Rothschild in China)
12:03 Drinking your own wine and having a taster's palate.
13:47 The family connection to wine and bottling your best.
15:59 "Seeding the market."
17:28 The "Text Sellers" trend in wine branding.
18:28 Making wine like making music--Boy Bands vs. Punk Rock.
22:15 When a brand becomes a Brand.
25:58 Making wine through Spreadsheet. The adjusting numbers game.
27:32 Buying through vineyards, vs. buying grapes in bulk.
28:12 "How do you focus your brand?" Distinct approaches.
29:55 The Saarloos song-writers/winemakers.
32:06 The annual variations in the same wine.
34:05 Marketing without tasting notes and cataloguing flavor visually.
39:57 Presenting blends as opposed to tasting notes.
43:02 Two separate goals in wine making.
47:51 Price points, skews and taking exception to being called "cavalier."
50:57 The wine club base, and serious risk from frost.
54:29 The different approaches of contracting vineyards for grapes, vs. farming your own land.
"You're a dedicated wine maker."
56:11 The family business at Saarloos, and selling grapes.
58:41 Bill's experience getting grapes from Napa.
01:00:11 Sugar levels in wine and cases moved by Bill.
01:01:45 Packaging in "obnoxious bottles."
01:04:02 Final words from Bill and Keith