European Wine Blogger Conference, Vienna 2010

Robert McIntosh, Ryan y Gabriela O´Paz, presentando el evento

What can I say about my trip to Vienna?

It has been like falling in love in slow motion –surprisingly, the same way it happened in Lisbon a year before in the previous editions of the EWBC.

In the days before the event, my head was completely out of this world. I gradually started to visualize my stay in Austria and to recall familiar faces I was to meet. It was a very nice feeling. Right on the plane, I met some of those people.

When we landed in Vienna, I suddenly felt I wanted to play the violin –and I don’t even know how to hold it!

The programme was perfectly organized. This was mainly due to the fact that the organizers –who arranged everything with great professionalism– were also participants to the event, and they wanted to enjoy it too.

Presentations? Michael Cox from Wines of Chile made a fantastic presentation. They talked about Chile as a great wine-maker, its wineries and, finally, its wines. This helped us understand why Chile is becoming a first-line reference in the wine global market.

Presentación de Wines from Austria

What can I say about Wines from Austria? Not only they presented their wines, but also they organized the event in wonderful premises, the city of Vienna and their country with all its wineries backing their presentation. Our Austrian friends did really well. They have a wonderful country and a breathtaking city and their wines are simply gorgeous. Their wines (mainly white)have music. Their red wines are a bit flat, at least this is my opinion bearing in mind I come from Spain where red wines are much more expressive.

There were quite a lot of Austrian wineries present at the event, as well as some Portuguese (Wines of Portugal) and Spanish that offered their spaces, time and wines to the participants.

The conferences by Elin McCoy, who wrote The Emperor of Wine; Rowan Gormley, CEO of nakedwines.com; Evelyne Resnyk, author of Wine Brands; and Andre Ribeirinho, CEO of Adegga.com, were really interesting.

Dinners. I spent three nights in Vienna and I had the chance to experience three very different styles of dinner. The first one took place in a beautiful restaurant. The second one in a super-modern bar where we could dance; and the third in a popular place where we were served dishes that recalled Obelix’s dinners. All these places had three aspects in common: 1) Loads of good wine. 2) Wonderful people around the wine. 3) High spirits adults get when they want to have fun with good wine.

Navegando y catando vinos por el Danubio

The perfect end? I had not planned which trip to get for Monday. Right after arriving in Vienna, I decided I wanted to take a boat ride on the Danube. “A boat ride on the Danube”, I think no more words are needed –tasting wines and seeing vineyards from the Danube; doesn’t it sound great? It certainly does and it was simply marvellous.

Every time more and more we hear about the power of social networks. In fact, a new film on this matter has just been released and I do recommend it. There is not a single economic sector that has not been influenced by the power of social networks. In this sense, many of the agents trying to change the way wines are seen and appreciated in the world were gathered there.

Social networks are changing the world in general and more specifically the world of wines. But what makes the sector of wines especially interesting is that a lot of consumers assume as unique and/or main source of information the Internet and Social Media, and only a few Wineries understand this tendency.

A few days ago I read in Twitter: The sector of wines ignores Social Media. And I replied to that tweet, “maybe the sector does, but certainly not consumers”.

Viñedos de Domane Wachau

At this meeting, there were 200 consumers from 30 countries. Their passion for wines encourages them to gather once a year to meet other people with their same likes. They usually find other people in the Internet and try to get to know them outside the net in events like this. Or maybe they look for other people with their same interests with whom they may keep in touch through the Internet. They are all linked by their passion for wine and its culture. Most of them see it as a hobby, but they write and read a lot about wine. And there is nothing else they like more than tasting different and good wines. Therefore, they flew or drove thousands of kilometres to be in Vienna. They know a lot about wines. And they went to Vienna to write in their blogs about which wines they love and why. Then a lot of people will read their opinions.

Will Wineries start to understand how important it is that these people get to know their wines and make a good evaluation of their products? If they had understood that, they would have been there. However, many of them were not present in the event.

Congratulations to Robert, Ryan and Gabriella because this edition was even better than last year’s. Because this format works. Because I really enjoyed my stay in Vienna and I got the feeling that most of participants share this opinion.  

And to all participants to the EWBC 2010, I hope to stay in touch with many of you. Big hugs.

This post in Spanish: European Wine Blogger Conference, en Viena 2010

8 thoughts on “European Wine Blogger Conference, Vienna 2010

  1. Very kind words, and I’m glad to hear you enjoyed it so much. I look forward to meeting up again next year :)

    By the way, it would be very interesting to read your reviews of some specific Chilean and Austrian wines from your (Spanish) perspective. We hear a reasonable amount about them here in the UK, but I’d love to hear what you made of them and which ones were your favourites.

  2. Ignacio, pero como sufris… envidia me corroe. Y al pobre Fabio como le lias.

    A ver si nos vemos pronto un saludo.

    Felicidades por el trabajo desarrollado.

    Alfredo M.

  3. Caray que bien te lo pasas!!! Me ha gustado mucho tu post, es muy directo y comentas un montón de cosas. Me sumo a la petición de Robert sobre los vinos, especialmente me interesan los chilenos. En Inglaterra probe un par de ellos y estaban exquisitos. Suerte y te sigo. Miguel

  4. Thank you Robert for your comment. I do not think you would find interesting my reviews on Chilean and Austrian wines. As I learn more and more on wine and on wine culture I understand much better, that in certain things my position is to listen and not to talk, to read, and not to write. This is my attitude when I am in front of people who know a lot about wines. This has also been my attitude in the EWBC in Vienna where there were many people who knew a lot about wine. And this is my attitude in front of you who are one of the organizers (and know also a lot about wine) of this magnificent event. Thank you again Robert because I learned a lot in Vienna, I had much fun, and I have a lot to learn now reading other participants posts and reviews.

  5. Hola Alfredo: Gracias por tu comentario.

    Tenías que haberte venido. Es una experiencia irrepetible. Bueno irrepetible no porque el año que viene es en Italia.

    ¿Que al pobre Fabio le lío? Qué cara tiene Fabio!! Va contando que la culpa es mía para que no le dé con la cacerola en la cabeza su mujer. Y qué pasa si un día me encuentro con ella y me quiere atizar a mí?

    Siento no haber ido a visitar tu viñedo en vendimia, pero no encontré tu teléfono y al final me fui a Rioja.

    Si tienes algún evento simpático házmelo sabere que estaré encantado de acercarme.

    Un abrazo

  6. Hola Miguel:
    Gracias por tu comentario. No me puedo quejar sobre cómo me lo paso. Respecto de mi opinión sobre los vinos chilenos prefiero darla a nivel global: excepcionales. En general no entro en mi blog sobre valoraciones muy concretas de ninguno de los vinos porque no soy ninguna eminencia a la hora de catar, y mucho menos cuando vengo de estar con bastantes catadores de primerísima magnitud. Te puedo pasar las notas de cata publicadas en Adegga sobre 592 distintos vinos chilenos que espero sean de tu interés y que están valoradas por muy diversos catadores. http://www.adegga.com/wine/country/152-chile

  7. Excellently written article, if only all bloggers offered the same content as you, the internet would be a much better place. Please keep it up! Cheers.

  8. Hello Austria Hotels:
    Thanks for your comment. I think that we will make it. For me it was quite easy to write as I did. When I was in Vienna I saw a wonderful country, with a lot to say in wine, and in wine tourism.

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