Wednesday, February 9, 2011

Maryland Wine & Grape Day in Annapolis

MWA is hosting its second annual "Day in Annapolis" this Wednesday, and we are requesting your attendance to meetings throughout the day and at the reception at Crush Winehouse at 5:30 p.m.
- Orientation of issues begins promptly at 8:30 a.m. in the House Office Building lounge on Bladen St. Meetings begin at 9 a.m.
- We have over 130 meetings scheduled with legislators throughout the day.
- The Comptroller's office is hosting a "Winery Compliance and Regulation" seminar for our industry from 1 - 4 p.m.
- MWA is hosting a Tasting of Maryland Wine legislative reception at 5:30 at Crush Winehouse on West St. Over 40 legislators have RSVP'd so far, along with the Secretary of Agriculture and others.
Please review the legislator schedule posted on the page listed above and let us know which you can attend them. We also need a strong showing at the legislative reception.
Thanks for your ongoing participation and support of our efforts in Annapolis. We stand to gain big this year with direct shipping and other advances in laws affecting wineries.

Tuesday, December 21, 2010

Status of Direct Shipping in Maryland

Report finds no adverse impacts in 37 jurisdictions polled, debunks myths,
and provides fact-based path to passage of Direct-to-Consumer Wine Shipping
legislation in 2011

The Office of the Comptroller today released a 257-page report based on
extensive research culled from the 37 states plus the District of Columbia
that currently allow the shipment of wine directly to consumers.

The report was released ahead of the December 31st deadline mandated by
SB858 Maryland Winery Modernization Act of 2010.

“The report finds no evidence of increased underage access, no problems
collecting taxes and no increase in alcohol abuse in any of the
jurisdictions that allow direct shipping,” Kevin Atticks, executive
director of the Maryland Wineries Association said.

The report is in agreement with a 2003 Federal Trade Commission study that
also found that direct shipping increases consumer access to wine, while
providing adequate controls states desire.

“We know from our peers in other states, that the ability to ship wine to
customers grows winery revenues by 15-20%,” said Ed Boyce of Black Ankle
Vineyards in Mt. Airy.

The report finds no adverse impact to local retailers or wholesalers in
states where wineries are permitted to mail directly to consumers.

“Direct-to-consumer shipping would benefit Maryland's consumers by
allowing legal-age buyers to get the wines they want,” said Cary Greene,
chief operating officer and gneral counsel of WineAmerica, the national
association of American wineries. “WineAmerica applauds the Comptroller's
careful analysis and recognition that Maryland has the tools to regulate
this vital channel of interstate commerce in wine.”

“Discussions from this point forward can now be rooted in fact, rather
than conjecture,” said Atticks, who notes that the first time Maryland
wineries tried to change the law was in 1981—30 years ago. “We look forward
to gaining the ability to sell our wine directly to both our in- and
out-of-state customers with the passage of direct shipping legislation.”


Additional resources:

Comptroller's Shipping Report [3.9MB PDF]:

Information about direct shipping:

FTC report (2003):

Maryland Wineries Association:

Thursday, October 14, 2010

Ben Clark

We know you're smiling on us, from your seat at the Captain's Table.

Patuxent Wine Trail goes Local!

It's a rolling festival! All of the wineries on the Patuxent Wine Trail will host special guests the weekend of Oct 23/24. If you have not visited your local wineries yet this is the perfect time to do it. Check out the website for details on who will be at which winery, and how best to travel the trail.
As for POLW, we're hosting Cafe des Artistes on Saturday and Thompson's Corner Café on Sunday.
They'll be here noon to four.

A side note: The park is currently under construction, so you'll see a lot of equipment, drainage fencing, and detours. No worries, assured we are OPEN FOR YOU!

Friday, August 13, 2010

News from the winery manager

Wow, what a day.

It started at 6:30 am meeting Mark at the truck to let him in to get power set up for the bottling rig. Had a little excitement in that I set off the alarm and had to talk with operator 57 of our alarm company to forestall the visit from the police! Was interesting way to begin.

The crew all showed up and we got to work. A great group of friends and family helped, some from as far away as California and Seattle! We all shared Grace's breakfast Burritos and Mary's donuts and other pastries. Promptly at or about 9 am we got started on the bottling and all went very smoothly. It was hot, brutally hot and humid but things went well. Both red wines went through quickly and relatively painlessly.

We broke for lunch and when we started up again with the Barrel Fermented and Aged Chardonnay the problems began. The labels would not stick to the bottles. We tried everything; we slowed down, we sped up, we hand pressed the labels, nothing worked. In the end, after a number of phone calls to Pat and to the label folks we just decided to bottle without the label and fix that problem when we can. We now have 100+ cases of beautiful Chardonnay without labels - oh well, stand by for a call for a labeling party at the winery.

Much thanks to all who came out to help us, I hope it was fun for you and that you will come back and enjoy the wines many times in the future.

Tuesday, August 3, 2010

Fall bottling day scheduled

We're bottling our Fall releases on Wednesday, August 11. We get started early in the morning and run the line all day, so be sure to stop by and see us in action.
Three new offerings will get bottled:
1634 - Our oak barrel fermented Chardonnay, and two dry reds: Quarterdeck and Captain's Table.

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