This past Sunday, Jeff Siegel (aka The Wine Curmudgeon) explained that his “goal is [to] help Americans see wine as Europeans do, as something to drink every day. Even if it kills me.”
This is a goal that everyone who loves wine should rally behind — wine shouldn’t be reserved strictly for connoisseurs. Fortunately, an increasing number of wine lovers across the globe are helping combat the poison of wine snobbery. Two of these people — Lisa Byrne and Vanessa French – are doing more than their part in my hometown of Washington DC.
Lisa is a marketing and events professional, but she’s best known as the DC Event Junkie. Vanessa is the founder of Pivot Point Communications, a boutique creative communications agency. Over a Sunday brunch just two months ago, Lisa started lamenting the fact that Washington DC has a beer week – but didn’t have a wine week. So the two decided to start one. A few bar napkins later, the idea was fully hashed out.
“Our goal was to demystify wine by making it a less intimidating experience and by creating events that foster learning more about the vast subject — and the enjoyment of wine, of course,” Vanessa later explained to me.
DC Wine Week finished up this past Saturday, and by all accounts, it was a smashing success. All the official events were well attended, and the concept inspired other area wine bars, restaurants, retailers, and others to host their own wine-themed events.
Lisa and Vanessa plan on plan on hosting an even larger weeklong event in the spring. Huge congratulations to both! I hope their success inspires others to launch similar events.