Edited By Anne Goarzin
Thinking Beyond the Bottle: Traditional French Wine versus New Media
Among the world’s great libations, wine is perhaps the most recognized as having a distinct cultural dimension. Its origins stretch back into the annals of history. Archaeological evidence suggests that wine was in existence as far back as 4000 BC.1 This ancient beverage hasn’t dramatically changed over recent centuries. It is still predominantly a drink made from the natural fermentation of grapes and it is fundamentally defined by its association with specific places. Because of this somewhat unique association with place, the story of that place has taken on particular relevance in the wine world. As wine drinkers in many markets strive for better quality wines they have become interested in the quest for an enhanced story. It is this story that allows a wine to be distinct in an increasingly homogenized wine world. French wine is steeped in story and has considerable advantage over new world wines in this regard. Modern winemakers must facilitate this desire for story as demanded by an increasingly quality-driven market. They need to seek out new opportunities to allow their story to be told. Because of its dependence on tradition and authenticity some French winemakers appear reluctant to fully embrace new technological ways of telling their story. They still want to rely on the traditional methods of encouraging consumer engagement with their wines. These methods include expensive experiential visits and complex place-based wine regulation. Stories have historically been passed down through word of mouth and then subsequently through various forms of literature....
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