Wednesday, October 31, 2007

No More Wine by Mail

Effective Monday, October 1 (2007), a new Ohio state law goes into effect that bans direct wine shipments from wineries that produce over 150,000 gallons of wine a year (about 63,000 cases). All of Ohio's more than 100 wineries fall into this category.

The provision, supported by Ohio's powerful Wholesale Beer and Wine Association, was attached to the state budget without a public debate. In my opinion, it's a huge step backwards for Ohio wineries attemping to compete with their California and Pacific Northwest counterparts.

It's also a loss for consumers who will have to pay the wine wholesaler's up to 33% mark-up rather than buying directly from the winery. (Of course, you can still buy from the winery in person.)

The Cleveland Plain Dealer this morning quoted Donniella Winchell, executive directory of the Ohio Wine Producers Association, as saying the ban will be good for Ohio's wine industry, allowing it to grow. Personally, I don't see that artificially protecting the smallest growers will help the industry or wine consumers.

Do you have an opinion? Leave a comment below.

(photo credit: istockphoto)

Monday, October 15, 2007

Ohio Wine Tours

Looking for a way to enjoy Ohio's Lake Erie wine district without having to find a designated driver or forego tasting the wine? Consider Ohio Wine Tours' tour of the "Grand River Valley." The eight-hour tour includes visits to a selection of the region's best estate vineyards, a gourmet lunch, cellar and vineyard tours, and a talk about how grapes are grown and harvested in Ohio and what makes the Grand River Valley ideal for wine grapes. Four-hour tours are also available.

The tour is $150 per person with a maximum of four persons. They will also pick you up at your hotel, residence, or business for a rate of $40/hour. Reservations and information can be found by calling 440 228-8941.

Ohio Wine Tours are offered by Western Reserve Touring Company, with more than 17 years experience in creating NE Ohio group tours.

(photo credit: istockphoto)

Tuesday, October 2, 2007

Loudonville Wine Shop Hosts Sweetest Day Ohio Wine Night

It's only fitting that Loudonville's 39 East wine shop should host a Sweetest Day Ohio wine night, since the Valentine's Day-like, romantic holiday is a Northeast Ohio creation. The event, to be held on October 20, will feature a variety of wines, including those from Rainbow Hills and Shawnee Springs Wineries. In addition to the tastings, there will be a dessert bar, with chocolate-covered strawberries, miniature cheesecakes, and other delicious creations, and a selection of appetizers.

Tickets are $25 per person, which includes wine tasting plus food. Designated driver tickets are available at $20 per person (includes non-alcoholic drinks instead of wine).

Reservations are recommended. Visit the 39 East Web site or call 419 994-4479 for information and reservations.

39 East is located at 16427 State Route 39 in Loudonville, in Mohican County.

(photo credit: istockphoto)