Wine brings people together. And our mission here at The Wine Culture Project is to help bring people together to learn, enjoy and celebrate with wine. As we have developed the Wine Culture Project, we have aimed from the beginning to educate, share and enjoy wine with others with the highest level of expertise while remembering that most people that drink wine want to do so without pretentiousness.
Thinking of having a hors d’oeuvres party with friends, a wine tasting with colleagues from the office or a more formal sit-down wine dinner in your home? Do you need a little helping pulling off the event? That is where we come in. WCP offers an array of wine tasting and educational options to suit your event. We think that the best part about wine is the communal aspect that is involved in drinking a bottle of wine.
Do you want to have a wine dinner in your home? The best wines of the world act as a component of the meal, they are never overwhelmed by the accompanying food nor are they overbearing in their own right. And the best wine dinners explore the harmonious balance of great food and wine. We have teamed up with some of the best local chefs to provide multi-course wine dinners that range from three to as many as seven courses. Each course is expertly prepared onsite by our Chef and staff while John pairs each course with carefully selected wines that match not only the focal points of the dish, but also the subtle background flavors that often make the best dishes pop.
Comparing particular grapes, styles and region together is the best way to understanding wine. Think of wine as a subject in school. Once you learn the basics, the following lessons are building blocks. In the case of wine, becoming fluent with the basics and then the building blocks is enjoyable and fun. What will you learn through WCP tastings? First, the language of wine. And when it comes to wine – the vocabulary doesn’t have to be as abstract as you might think. With a little guidance, breaking down the basic flavor and aromatic profiles of wine is easy. Then we build up your vocabulary to a point that enables you to not only identify qualities in wine that you previously missed, but you will also be able to navigate wine lists and wine shops with confidence.
Possible themes include:
New World / Old World – Comparing wines from Europe with those from the North America, South America, Australia and beyond.
Varietal Tasting – Exploring single varietal wines such as Chardonnay, Pinot Noir, Cabernet Sauvignon, Riesling, etc…
Regional Tasting – Touring wine regions such as Burgundy, Russian River Valley or Bordeaux
Seasonal Tasting – Wines that drink well during Spring, Summer, Fall, Winter
Vertical Tasting by Producer – Tasting different vintages of wines produced by one winemaker
Horizontal Tasting by Vintage – Tasting different producers of a specific region from the same vintage
Wine and Cheese Tasting
Wine and Small Plates Tasting
Hors d’oeuvres Parties
Want to have friends or colleagues over, but want to keep it light? Do you need help with selecting wine for the evening or do you need someone to come in and explain the wines in a manner that isn’t intrusive or dull? Small plate and hors d’oeuvres parties are perfect opportunities for you to bring guests together in a more relaxed setting. Using seasonal ingredients and wines, we can produce the perfect party in your home or in an outdoor setting.
Personal Buying & Cellar Management
Looking to stock your wine cellar with the wines that best suit your taste and budget? Buying great wine doesn’t need to be stressful or overwhelming. With our experience buying wine within the complex wine distribution systems across the country, we have incredible access to the best importers and distributors of fine wine. And we also have valuable experience navigating online and traditional secondary market networks. We can help you purchase with confidence as we determine providence, authenticity and fair market value of wines that you wish to acquire.
The Wine Culture Project also offers consulting and educational services. What do we have to offer to your business? A practical, common sense approach to understanding the role that wine, beverage and service all have within your business. No matter what type of business you own, you need to accomplish two goals – exceeding the expectations of the customer to ensure they come back while maintaining a comfortable level of profitability. How do you get there? If you build it, they will come. Whether you own a tavern, a high-end restaurant or a retail store, if you accomplish three things you will be successful – building a strong foundation and structure, choosing and training a motivated staff and most importantly, managing the first two efficiently with the bottom line in mind.
Wine List Development
Guests form their first opinion of your wine list as it is dropped into their hands. Even prior to reading the wine list, the guest will have a set of pre-conceived expectations of your establishment that stem from reputation, the menu, the dress of the staff and the physical layout of your space. The wine list can often stand out, but it can never take away from the standard that you have set with the other restaurant attributes. By focusing on the following points, your wine list can act as another conduit in delivering your vision.
Staff Building & Training
Whether it be while dining in some of the best restaurants in the world or stopping in at a neighborhood bistro, there have been occasions when my expectations of wine service were not met. An overall misunderstanding of what the guest expects can lead to a decline in business. Symptoms of poor wine service range from simple mistakes as grabbing the wrong bottle out of the cellar to more serious offenses as recommending a wine that pairs horribly with the menu. No matter how minute or inexcusable, missteps by your staff can inhibit you from delivering on your promise to the guest. What is the point of having a renowned wine list if the captain or sommelier cannot bring over or recommend the proper selection? There is a way to build and train your staff while insuring that they believe in your vision.
Inventory & Cost Management
The scenario is all too common – a great restaurant or retail store has a highly sought after selection of wine and a staff that can deliver on the organization’s mission, yet a year later, they are struggling to stay open. How does that happen? Poor planning, frivolous spending and a lack of focus all contribute to loss. Even in a struggling economy, it is possible to streamline expenses and grow as an organization. Applying the changes in the culture that are successful on the floor of your restaurant or store to the finances of the corporation can dramatically improve the bottom line. And it’s not as difficult or overwhelming as you think!