Saturday, October 10, 2009

The Power Of A Balanced Relationship

So you know that phrase, “It’s not what you know but who you know” um, might be a bit of truth to that. Let me first state…once again, just for the record that Beaune Imports is my favorite importer and through the years owner Michael Sullivan and I have become dear friends. Don’t want people pointing the finger of, “she’s on the take” or whatever at me, I in no way receive any payment for my pimping, shit I rarely even get sampled on new releases anymore, from Beaune Imports. Just crazy about those wines and after years of dinners, emails, his unyielding support of my palate and my writing, and tastings I’ve grown to adore Michael as well…no easy feat, kind of a clam that one….charismatic as hell but, let’s just say it took some work on my part. Thankfully I always knew, or thought that we had a kinship, a similar sense of humor and VERY similar palates, I bullied my way into that very guarded heart. Glad to be there for me, but what I dig even more is that others might get to know those wines, the man and family behind them…makes it all worth it.

To have a successful relationship of any kind there needs to be balance, be it love, friendship or business, and balance is one thing that The Wine Country and Beaune Imports do very well. For years our store has stocked wines from Beaune Imports that few had heard of, wines from Menetou-Salon, Saint Bris, Bourgueil and Cotes du Luberon. We tasted the wines, talked about them and urged our customers to try them….it worked and Michael’s wines are some of the best selling, not just in the French department, but in the store. His continued dedication to wines of purity, wines of place and wines that offer rather remarkable value, has built a trust, we trust and believe in his company, what we get in return, big fat allocations! Dagueneau, De Montille, Clos Rougeard, Trevallon, Chidaine, we are rewarded for our support with a good chunk of the special, or rare wines. Sure he could sell them to anyone but he thanks us by making sure we get plenty of the wines that are super easy to sell, balance.

So another super cool thing that Michael gives us, something that you rarely see down here in the South…in store events. Michael makes it a point to come down once a year, show his mug, make face time with our customers and teach them a little more about his wines, and himself…makes a world of difference. Our customers feel like they know him, I hear it all the time, “When is Michael coming this year?” or “Is Michael doing a Friday night class or Saturday tasting this year?” hell, there have been times he has done both. We appreciate these visits more than he knows, they help create another kind of balance…that between an importer, specific estates and the end consumer. Sure, I adore those visits, I get so see an old friend, get to break his bawls face to face but I simply love watching people get closer to company and a person that I truly admire, wicked cool that. So for those of you that have been asking, yes Michael Sullivan will be coming this year, he will be doing a special Wednesday event…and the only open to the public event he will be doing down here, and oh, did I mention he will bringing some friends……

Wednesday November 4th 4:30-7:00 P.M.
Meet Importer Michael Sullivan, (A man partially responsible for my palate…and my attitude) as well as:

Etienne de Montille of Domaine de Montille (Volnay, Burgundy)

Claude Drouhin of Chandon de Briailles, (Savigny-les-Beaune, Burgundy)

Samuel Guibert of Mas de Daumas Gassac, (Herault, Languedoc)

Eloi Durrbach of Domaine de Trevallon, (Bouch de Rhone, Provence)

Stephane Dupuch of Chateau Sainte-Marie, (Entre-Deux-Mers, Bordeaux)

Pascal Agrapart of Agrapart & Fils, (Avize, Champagne)

Bruno Schmitt of Roland Schmitt, (Bergbieten, Alsace)

Marie-Claire & Pierre Fort of Domaine Mouscaillo, (Limoux, Languedoc)

The price to meet all these amazing people and taste their wines…$20.00, incredible. Mark the calendar kids, this is an event not to miss.

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