November 10th, 2011 is Languedoc Day. Show that you’re participating with a free registration on the LanguedocDay event page.
What is Languedoc Day?
Languedoc Day is an opportunity for lots of people to discover or learn about one of the largest winemaking regions on the planet. This beautiful stretch of land on the Mediterranean coast of the south of France produces more wine than the entire United States. We produce more wine than all of Australia too! Just in this one region!
While a lot of that wine has historically been bottled in bulk under vin de pays names that aren’t always recognizable (big brands like Fat Bastard, Red Bicyclette, and Arrogant Frog all come from here), more and more of our wines are being bottled under the controlled standards of the French Appellation system. And LanguedocDay is an opportunity for consumers to familiarize themselves with these Languedoc appellations.
What do you do on Languedoc Day?
Think Languedoc. Talk Languedoc. Drink Languedoc. And not necessarily in that order.
If you drink some Languedoc wine, you’re already doing your part!
Then think about telling your friends. Invite some people over to share the wine with. Or throw a picture of the bottle on facebook, twitter, youtube, or whatever websites you like. Let people know that you’re drinking Languedoc. And if you add “#languedocday” without the quotes, it will be easy for us to see your participation!
Which brings us to the last way to participate: reading about who else is enjoying Languedoc Day. Follow the conversation on Twitter to see who else is talking up my favorite wine region. Just follow this link: #LanguedocDay
Personally, I’ll be attending the Université du Vin in Corbieres, a beautiful mountainous region in the Languedoc. A lot of French winos will be meeting up to talk about different contemporary wine topics around the subject of notoriety. I think Languedoc Day is a perfect example of how we can try to build notoriety for the region!
Can I drink O’Vineyards on Languedoc Day?
You can drink O’Vineyards any day that ends in Y. 🙂
Unfortunately, my wines aren’t present in the US for the 2011 Languedoc Day celebration. But there are lots of delicious Languedoc wines you can get your hands on instead so cheer up and bottoms up!
Languedoc Day appellations
Here are some wine appellations from the Languedoc that you might be able to find at a wine shop or Whole Foods near you.
- Saint Chinian
- La Clape
- Coteaux du Languedoc
Who decides it’s Languedoc Day?
The CIVL (Conseil Interprofessionnel des Vins du Languedoc) is a interprofessional group that represents the AOC/AOPs of the Languedoc. That means that everybody who produces appellation wines pays some dues to the CIVL, and the CIVL then uses that money to promote the entire region’s appellations.
In an attempt to increase the renown of our appellations in the US, the CIVL hire an American marketing group called the Benson Marketing Group to represent our products. This group has teamed up with Rick Bakas, who successfully nurtured Cabernet Day, to create a Languedoc Day. In short, this is a unilateral marketing effort. A lot of people gripe about this saying you can’t just decide it’s Languedoc Day without some consensus. My view is that you absolutely can. If you have energy and resources to spend on promoting the Languedoc, then promote the Languedoc already! No need to sit around making sure the date is okay with everybody. Just steam forward! Full speed ahead!
I’ve been reading about some of the cool stuff going on at Where 2.0, but I’ve got this funny feeling in the back of my head that Where 2.0 might be forgetting the farmers.
That screenshot from Upcoming makes me so freaking sad. “Sorry, there are no popular events in your area!” I even lied about my area and made it the biggest city near here. 🙁 Which brings up another problem. If web services don’t cater to rural areas, countries that are predominantly rural (eg France and Spain) might experience stalled adoption rates, even in moderately sized cities.
For those who have no idea what “where 2.0” is about: the Internet is getting really interested in location location location.
YouTube, Twitter, and the usual suspects all want to know if you’ll please enter geographical data along with every new upload. Sites like Gowalla and Foursquare are putting big money on geographic location-based gadgets. And for a while, sites have been finding ways to get people away from the desktop and into the street to meet up for flashmobs, dance parties and massive group discounts.
But these sites have largely focused on big metropolitan areas. And that’s understandable. These are businesses and they figure the easiest way to get clients is to focus on places with high adoption rates and a big potential consumer base. Not a lot of winemakers prune with their iPhone handy waiting to hear about a discount on designer jeans.
And I’m wondering if California winemakers are going to be reaping the profits of proximity to major tech hubs like San Fran while poor old Languedoc hangs high and dry.
Is it part of our job as winemakers in a rural area to assess the current Internet landscape and retool some of the services out their to serve our needs? I’m working on this idea and I’ll keep coming back to it. For sure, there are ways that social media can sell wine like when Twitter-ers bid on wine at a Toques et Clochers auction in rural France. But we might have to actively study these examples if we want to replicate their success.