I am officially behind in my blog posts! It has been a nutty month since late October but there was definitely some fun happenings that I don’t want to overlook.
This October was really the first “big” road trip for MTGA. Six days, four cities, four plane flights, one four-ish hour drive with a bunch of crazies cooped up in an SUV and a bunch of new and old friends at each stop. I’ve been on the road for other events and traveled a bit but I have to say this trip was something else.
To start, the shear thought of spending each night in a different city was a little daunting. Luckily between Kansas City, Dallas, St. Louis and Chicago there isn’t a ton of distance to be covered. The longest flight was from Chicago to home and even then I was back by 6pm. Still I wasn’t sure how I would weather it, especially fighting off a cold the night before I left. For the latter half of the trip I was with a group of friends and colleagues. For the first day and half I was on my own. I wasn’t sure how the wines would be received and if people would buy in to what I was trying to do…but it was worth a shot.
Honestly I had quite a bit of doubt going into the trip. Between my grandfather’s rapidly declining health, finishing up harvest and being a relatively unknown wine producer I had a very hard time staying out of my own head. To be honest I started to buy into the idea that the trip was going to fall flat.
I was wrong.
The new and old friends we saw in each city made the trip insanely fun. 99% of the time I was stressed, exhausted and was on the brink of breaking down. Despite the fact that it looks like we just do a bunch of wine-ing and dining, trips like these are an immense amount of work without the other stressors that life likes to throw around. We do tend to eat and drink very well, but after an event with your adrenaline pumping what else are you supposed to do? I was able to explore three new cities and revisit one I hadn’t been to in over a decade. We laughed, ate, drank and I am pretty sure that we all had a hell of a good time.
I also finally know what real bar-b-que tastes like. It is hard to argue with that Texas brisket and Arthur Bryant’s! However getting my fix for real deep dish pizza and a Chicago-style hot dog wasn’t bad either.
The joy that this trip brought me couldn’t have come at a better time. Being able to explore and keep my mind occupied was just what the doctor ordered. It was just enough of an escape without truly escaping (if that makes sense). It was so good to see so many amazing people who believe in what we do as wine producers.
In short, THANK YOU to all of you who I saw in Kansas City for the Conn Valley and MTGA dinner; to everyone to came out in Dallas, St. Louis and Chicago at the Vintners Road Show stops. It meant so much to us small producers who don’t always get out that much. Without you all we don’t get to do what we do.
Can’t wait to do it all over again!