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Two years since the end of the blog, no regrets...

Who remembers this picture from April 1, 2011? That was the day I stopped writing my blog and began developing the only independent subscription-based wine review publication covering California, Oregon and Washington, exclusively. Posting on April Fools Day, I spoofed it a little but for those who know me, the picture says it all. Already never a fan of speed-blogging, tweetups and Wine Wednesday, I realized I wanted to do more than blog. I guess it could have happened sooner but may have developed a lot differently. 

What many people don’t know is that one of the main drivers in deciding to make the switch when I did was what amounted to a vacuum of coverage in domestic wines in late Winter 2011.  I had spent years writing my thoughts and opinion on wines months ahead of other reviewers and upon examination largely the only differerence I saw is that they had subscribers, and I didn’t. I viewed becoming a professional critic as an opportunity that may not come along again anytime soon. With the mantra among the wine blogging world being ‘monetization’ of their work, I just decided to do it but in a way that made sense for me. As it turns out, with pdwr growing, completely independent and free of advertising, elsewhere wine criticism is spiraling into disarray.

I look back on the last 24 months today in appreciation of how purely domestic wine report has unfolded and steadily grown organically with zero advertising. In March 2011, all I really knew was that the time for the change had arrived. It was just one of those truths that stares you in the face. Getting to the first issue, and through the point where I published it was one of the most grueling six months of my life. After that, I found each of the subsequent issues were easier to produce but still come with regularity where downtime between issues is usually less than two weeks. I try to make the publication better incrementally. The next volume will cover the Pacific Northwest and appear in early May (on time).

Currently, my North Coast issue, Volume 2.2 is in release serving as the faint beacon of opinion for the Sonoma Coast. I have learned so much about myself as a publisher, critic and photographer in the last two years and thank you for the encouragement, engagement and belief in the alternative viewpoint of purely domestic wine report. 

I am also working on creating a new subscriber-only website with fully integrated commerce. In a couple weeks I attend a two day workshop on iPhone photography in San Francisco. Finally I am exploring partnerships to help make the Advanced membership a world-class experience. The next two years should be amazing. 

Thanks for joining me on the journey!



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