When customers are as good (or better than) as the product

By Rita Vazquez-Torres | News

Nov 11

As NewStoneSoup ventures into the wine mentoring and sales (yes, passion for wine isn’t as much about your seniority / somalier-like qualities, but a continuous life experience, and maybe some authoritative training), we had a chance to spend some time observing the vibe (and friendly competition, more a wine-food kinship) at the 2012 Wine and Food Phest in Boston South End.  

Hosted by two well recognized and trusted enterprises – Phantom Gourmet and Julios Liquors (Westborough, MA), the event was fun and vibrant.  The selection was limited but hit the point it set out to make – introduce the young wine-ophile into the affordable and food friendly experience.  Underlined by the “drink responsibly” – tickets were $30 in advance and $40 at the door, not for the faint of budget or lacking the maturity to understand the communion of responsible feasting – the event featured 36 budget and food friendly selections and 8 food choices, leaving the pairing up to the exploratory nature of the 21-35 year olds that dominated the event.  And this is where my maternal pride kicks in – not only is Julio’s known for putting together some seriously intense wine tastings (this being one of their “lighter hearted” I’ve attended), but it was with great pleasure to watch the playful seriousness, well instilled manners and community spirit of the young crowd.  

If your young adult was at this event, dear potential reader/parent – our congratulations to a job well done in raising such well tempered and rounded generation.  As for the wines – well, as well rounded and fun as the crowd.  For those lucky enough to meet the winemaker – STLTO wines, italian intro to food-friendly, easy drinking and super affordable wines with an image (Jimmy Choo shoes anyone?) had the father-daughter team engage throughout the 6 hour ode to baccus. On the more “moving up to the guiding you gently from less complex wines to a more sophisticated palate” were the dark chocolate/tobacco noted Gabbiano Chianti begging for a hearty southern italian red sauce (meatballs from Martino’s anyone?) and the Carmine Grenata Cabernet Suavignon – interesting because it comes from the traditionally Malbec South American soil, was a very pleasant surprise.  Im a sucker for a good bitter apperitif, Mionetto “IL” Spritz is a good stand in for the Venetian 3 pm amaro apperitif.  Some usual suspects – Beringer and 90+ Cellars were in the house, but for wine snob like myself I was surprised by the flavor and easy drinking characteristics of the Phantom Gourmet Chianti. Cakes by Erin showcased some dainty and wonderful cupcakes and the mildly rich dark chocolate from The Chocolate Truffle made for a great pairing with some of the “heartier” (for this crowd) reds such as the Duca Pinot Noir (I made the recommendation to a couple of college girls and they felt they had a day of awakening…). I had to move on to another tasting, but Phantom tweeted with glee, and captured the crowd going “gangham style”.
For more info on the vendors and the event, visit www.PhantomGourmet.com or give the Julios staff a call. Great crowd, great event, and let us NOT forget Megaphone Mark the outdoors while we stood in line stand up comic!

As for the customers – I look forward to seeing you again as I explore tastings with the “Dos Familias” extensive lineup of wines, or see you at Julios when passing by for yet another wine or whisky tasting.  SALUD!


About the Author

As founder and CEO for NewStoneSoup, Mrs Vazquez-Torres has the opportunity to work on diverse STEM projects, offering strategic analysis and business development expertise, systems engineering and project management, and developing bottom line results that are unconventional. More...