—| From the desk of Larry Colbeck |—
Some things make for strange bedfellows; shared passions are not one of those things. Thirty-three years ago a shared passion for fine wine and our desire to know the how and who of it led my friend, David Johnson, and me to start The Wine Company. It has not been without headaches but all in all it’s been a joyful and satisfying journey often leaving me with giddy wonder. How many wonderful stories, amazing people and storied places have we delivered stopped up with a cork.
We’re all aware of the awakening to mixed drinks, cocktails; nothing has expressed the phenomenon more succinctly than the rising stardom of the mixologist. I’ve had occasion to listen to them work with their customer, sussing out what was wanted. Watch them pulling things off the back bar like a sorcerer assembling a potion, eyeing the color and sniffing the aromatics; immediately to face the moment of truth, across the bar from the hopeful and expectant customer.
I want that! I want to be there when every bottle of Burgundy or Rioja or Alvarinho that The Wine Company has imported is opened; sitting across the table seeing the pleasure and wonder would be so edifying. I would be squirming in my chair, leaning in, muttering “see?! see?!”
These passions are much the same; we take personal pride in the wine or spirit with which we chose to work, we both put our reputation on the line with the choices we make. The mixologist goes further creating something more with those hand chosen spirits, he adds his own nuance. I want to be part of this. Our experience and our contacts with producers can add yet another level of discernment, of judgement, of endeavor to the commitment of mixologists, at home or across the bar, to make great cocktails, to provide a special experience.
This fall The Wine Company will begin to curate a spirits portfolio. It is our intention to start slowly and grow slowly with the same deliberation to this portfolio as we have used to assemble our wine portfolio. We embark with great humility; we have a lot to learn. We would welcome your input and guidance. To spearhead this adventure and, frankly, make it more fun we’ve hire Dana Bonelli as Spirits Portfolio Director and Taylor Stein, Spirits Provocateur at Large.