Vine Wise

Going Underground

Columnist: Tim Carl
Oct, 2017 Issue

I have a friend—let’s call him “Bob”—who is in his 60s and has a vacation home and small vineyard in the hills above Calistoga. He made a fortune as an early investor in some of the biggest tech companies around, and now he drives expensive cars and is often traveling through some distant country in search of adventure. Bob flies his own helicopter and sits on the boards of three or four successful companies, and his children are being groomed to attend Ivy League colleges. Bob is also a total stoner, smoking marijuana daily.


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The Amazon Now Flows With Wine

Columnist: Tim Carl
Sep, 2017 Issue

Amazon’s recent purchase of Whole Foods Market for $13.7 billion will decimate small wine and beer retail shops across the country and hasten the consolidation of wineries and distributors.


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Things are Heating Up

Columnist: Tim Carl
Aug, 2017 Issue

It’s a fact that increasing temperatures will impact wine-grape growing. I’m not arguing one side or the other of the climate change debate. You either believe humans are the cause of increasing temperatures or you think this is a normal cycle of warming.


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Look for Winery Acqusitions to Continue

Columnist: Tim Carl
Jul, 2017 Issue

Over the last year or so, the number of winery and vineyard acquisitions has been surging at a breakneck pace. Jackson Family wines has been on a tear, purchasing many wineries, including Penner-Ash Wine Cellars. GI Partners bought Far Niente Wine Estates, TSG Consumer Partners purchased Duckhorn Wine Co., E. & J. Gallo bought Orin Swift Cellars, Constellation Brands purchased the Prisoner Wine Co., Francis Ford Coppola purchased Silverwood Vineyard and the owners of Silver Oak purchased Ovid Winery. This is only the tip of the iceberg, with many more deals that have been completed or are near completion.


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Hobby Loss

Columnist: Tim Carl
Jan, 2017 Issue

I don’t really envision the wholesale removal of vineyards in favor of cannabis, but I can imagine adding a marijuana crop to existing operations will be too attractive to pass up for many.


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Synthetic Wine

Columnist: Tim Carl
Dec, 2016 Issue

As wine businesses continue to evolve, it's important to know what the value proposition of wine actually is for most consumers.


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Hedging the Future

Columnist: Tim Carl
Nov, 2016 Issue

Up until recently, hedge funds and private equity typically stayed away from wineries and vineyards. There just wasnt enough profit potential.


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Secret Sauce

Columnist: Tim Carl
Oct, 2016 Issue

I remember getting high scores and a feature story on my wine in Wine Spectator. I was thrilled and waited for the phone to ring off the hook.


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Highest and Best Use

Author: Tim Carl
Columnist: Tim Carl
Sep, 2016 Issue

I only spent a brief amount of time at McKinsey, but even so, it changed the way I think. 


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Cork vs. Screw Cap

Author: Tim Carl
Columnist: Tim Carl
Jul, 2016 Issue

I love corks, but I think that has more to do with their natural origins and the fact they provide a certain level of tradition, theater and ceremony more than anything else.


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Thomas Jefferson's Dream

Author: Tim Carl
Columnist: Tim Carl
Jun, 2016 Issue

“Bringing wine to France is like bringing sand to a beach."


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Tourism From China Will Increase

Author: Tim Carl
May, 2016 Issue

On average, visitors from China spent $6,000 per person during trips to the United States, which was more than any of the other groups surveyed.


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Sobering News

Author: Tim Carl
Columnist: Tim Carl
Apr, 2016 Issue

If we could study how consumers were acting in 1938 we might get a better idea about where things may go for us in the near term.


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Everything Changes

Author: Tim Carl
Columnist: Tim Carl
Mar, 2016 Issue

When the only thing that is constant is change.


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Evolving Tastes?

Author: Tim Carl
Columnist: Tim Carl
Feb, 2016 Issue

Envisioning a future where grapes aren’t the biggest industry around here.


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Wine World: California's Newest Theme Park

Author: Tim Carl
Columnist: Tim Carl
Jan, 2016 Issue

Is Wine Country in danger of Disneyfication?


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Herd Mentality

Author: Tim Carl
Columnist: Tim Carl
Special Wine Issue, Dec, 2015

[Robert] Parker produced a simple method that provided busy, successful people with the ability to purchase exclusive luxury items that appealed to the American palate.


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Will Winter Bring A Super El Nino?

Author: Tim Carl
Columnist: Tim Carl
Special Wine Issue, Nov, 2015

 It’s time to assess and take action regarding potential winter flooding.


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Attack of the Robot Winemakers

Columnist: Tim Carl
Special Wine Issue, Oct, 2015

There’s something to be said for technology’s role in winemaking—but nothing can replace the human touch.


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How Many Tasting Rooms Are Enough?

Author: Tim Carl
Columnist: Tim Carl
Special Wine Issue, Oct, 2015

Normally, I lean toward the free-market side of things, but even I’m starting to wonder about the future of our downtowns.


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Water: Blood in the Veins

Columnist: Tim Carl
Sep, 2015 Issue

Our water troubles could worsen before they get better.


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Welcome to the New Vine Wise

Columnist: Tim Carl
Aug, 2015 Issue

Tim Carl introduces himself with his first Vine Wise column.


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Climate Change

Columnist: Richard L. Thomas
Dec, 2014 Issue

Will our warming temperatures become the norm?


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Sonoma County’s Agricultural Roots, Part 2

Columnist: Richard L. Thomas
Nov, 2014 Issue

Rich continues a look back on our agricultural/viticulture roots, then takes a look toward the future.


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Sonoma County's Agricultural Roots

Columnist: Richard L. Thomas
Special Wine Issue, Oct, 2014

Rich takes a look back at history and at the beginnings of SRJC’s agriculture program.


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Your small business is humming along smoothly, providing a service or product that’s keeping your bottom line—and your customers—happy. Suddenly, a serious issue arises with an emp...

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