Tuesday, February 23, 2010

Operation: Shutdown

Or maybe Operation: Hiatus. We'll see. I still have a few posts scheduled, but I'm thinking it's time to retire, re-tool or re-configure this blog. For the most part, it's a venue for me to write up my notes and thoughts on wine. But at least the notes can be covered by CellarTracker, and they'll be easily accessible for those searching for info on a particular wine. The reality is writing on Cab Franc and other lesser known varietals in the mid-price range has its limits. More importantly, the audience is limited.

There are really two ways to go about blogging. The first path is to work as a free PR agent by shilling samples and writing up favorable reviews. Vinography (or is it Vornography?), Wannabe Wino and The Wine Whore, among others, take this route. I'm kind of interested in wine on a semi nuts and bolts level, though, and the whole wine as lifestyle or what the hell, let's assign points to 905 wines in an afternoon angle isn't my thing. The second path is to educate yourself. This is the direction I'd like to go. Though I've read a fair cross section of wine books (The Science of Wine, Adventures on the Wine Route, Napa: An American Eden, The Far Side of Eden, A Hedonist in the Cellar, The Wine Trials, The Wines and Vines of Europe, The Millionaire's Vinegar, bits and pieces of the World Atlas of Wine), that's simply not enough. There's no substitute for thorough education and experience. Yes, I know humility sounds odd coming from a blogger, but there is much I need to learn.

Ultimately the goal is to communicate. Instead of changing my content to fit an aspirational audience that equates wine with class or wants to hear every $10 mass produced wine is awesome, I'll be re-joining the peanut gallery. There's no point in pontificating; one needs to work at the grass roots level. And that begins with learning and exchanging knowledge.


Alan said...

I hope you re-consider. I've enjoyed your thoughtful posts, and you cover an a segment of wine that is less popular, but that I enjoy.


Amigoni Vineyards said...

As a grower and winemaker of Cabernet Franc, it is a sad day to see you think about shutting down the blog. I think there are a few other angles you could take with Cab Franc such as the grower aspects, terroir, clones and other areas of the world where Cab Franc is being grown like Italy. Please re-consider francly speaking.
Amigoni Vineyards and Urban Winery
"The world would be a better place if everyone drank Cab Franc!"

CabFrancoPhile said...

Alan, Michael, thanks for the feedback. There is still much to be done w/ respect to Cab Franc. But at the same time, I need to work on expanding my palate and my knowledge base.

I think there is plenty more web wine writing in the future. But I need to re-think how best to present it, and how to streamline my notes a bit. I'm also thinking about the question of interactivity as the conversation is a bit one-sided right now.

Jeff said...


I enjoy reading your writing (which is, let's face it, a hell of a lot more thoughtful and lucid than mine), but totally understand where you're coming from. When you really break it down, you don't get a whole lot out of putting stuff up on the web for the world to see after a point (as you've no doubt figured out). You could just as easily take the same amount of time it takes to write a post and spend it more productively, by working at a winery, or reading more, or doing something else. I'm curious to see what you're going to find to do with that "extra" time...


CabFrancoPhile said...

Jeff, ROI on time spent is a big issue. Integrating my CellarTracker notes instead of re-writing them is one possibility. Using external links for context is another possibility. Still, that doesn't address the one-sided discussion.

Jeff said...

Yeah, ROI is a kind of a big thing. It helps if you have a lot of free time at work in which to do whatever...and yeah, the internet is never going to replace "real" friends or in person experiences, no matter how many people read your stuff. It's a relatively passive medium.

Joshiemac said...

I've really grown to enjoy your blog and I'm sad to read that you're going to curtail posting. I understand where you're coming from. I've toyed with the idea of writing a wine blog, if for nothing else to put to good use the insane amount of time I spend drinking & thinking about wine. But I have so much more to learn and so much more to experience before I can start telling other people about my perceptions.

Anyway, good luck with whatever you end up doing. Cheers!

Matt Mauldin said...

You've been one, if not the most, interesting blog that I've read. You've covered thoughtfully some provocative content and I've benefited from having read your blog. I think the esoteric blogs are the best- and at its root wine blogs should be like a stone tablet recording thoughtful conversation about wine among interested parties. CFF definitely fills that role. I hope you reconsider.

I put my tasting notes both on corkd and on my blog- sometimes I tweak them a little between the two- sometimes I just integrate the corkd tasting notes into my blog entries. I definitely think you reach a different audience between the two. Once again, I think what you do has a lot of value and I hope you recharge and reload on CFF soon.