Category: Uncategorized

Inside Spirits: Seeing Is Believing

Since 2004, the field of “multi-sensory integration of perception”—I’ll give you a moment to make your way through the briars of that phrase—has arisen to explore how humans integrate all their senses when perceiving something. In short, humans don’t determine taste solely based on input from their tastebuds. This is somewhat obvious: We all know the aroma of a product contributes a large part to what we taste. But less obvious cues are also in play. For instance, “mouthfeel” in spirits can shape flavor. We also taste with our eyes. The clarity of a vodka or the tiger-eye hue...

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The Real Thing: Beverage producers are turning to high-tech solutions to protect their products from counterfeiters.

That bottle of iconic wine or single-malt Scotch you just picked up likely is authentic, but as with any product of value, knockoffs are a tempting way for fraudsters to make a living—or a killing. With high-end beverages, counterfeits can be tricky to detect, because even product testing isn’t always conclusive.   Discovering fraud History is rife with tales of con artists who invent fake labels, doctor ordinary wines or spirits, make outrageous claims, and scam those who collect such prizes. In one celebrated instance, a case of Le Montrachet—a famed and very expensive French Chardonnay-based white Burgundy—was sold...

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Show Time: Cris Steller on getting the most from a trade show experience

Remember the adage, “If you want something done, ask a busy person to do it”? Cris Steller is a busy guy. Not only is he a founding partner of Dry Diggings Distillery, a growing venture located in California’s El Dorado Hills, he’s also executive director of the California Artisanal Distillers Guild (CADG). Steller came to the beverage industry nearly a decade ago after a career in association management—basically, helping businesses and nonprofits optimize their strengths via support services including educational programming, government relations, sales, marketing, and more. When asked about the drastic change in professional direction, he says, “I’d been living and working in Mexico for a time, where I started to learn about the tequila industry, and when I returned to California I needed a change.” Taking a leap of faith, Steller and partner Gordon Helm launched Dry Diggings in 2008, with a focus on using locally grown fruit and grains. Adam Stratton founded Amador Distillery in Jackson, Calif., in 2012; both operations were consolidated under the Aurum Sierra Inc. umbrella in 2015. As the company grew, Steller recognized a need for small distilleries across the state to align efforts for more effective governmental representation at the state level. In 2012, Dry Diggings became one of five charter members of CADG. “[A grassroots association] had been trying to get it off the ground for about 20 years,” he...

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Trading Up: Choosing the right trade shows and getting the most out of them will expand your brand, industry knowledge, and network.

It’s no secret there is a multitude of trade shows surrounding the alcohol beverage industry. So how does one choose which to attend and get the most out of that choice? Following just a few simple steps will get you on the right path toward turning your trade show experience into profits—and even having some fun along the way.   Making the choice When it comes to wine-focused trade shows, attending the annual Unified Wine and Grape Symposium is a no-brainer. It’s the largest of its kind in the United States, and offers everything you can possibly think of...

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Inside Beer: Crafting a Better Can

When Peter Love, founder of Cask Global Canning Solutions, debuted a manual canner that could fill and seal two cans at a time at the 2002 Craft Brewers Conference and BrewExpo in Cleveland, Ohio, the response was less than encouraging. Love recalls, “One guy came by the booth and said, ‘That’s the dumbest thing I’ve ever heard of. What respectable brewer would put their beer in an aluminum can?’” Dale Katechis, founder of Oskar Blues Brewery, for one. He bought one of Cask’s machines and debuted Dale’s Pale Ale in cans later that year. Marty Jones, Oskar Blues’ marketing...

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