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Bottle signing at Costco in Orlando, Florida


This must look like the daily life of an Alsacian vintner (not to be mistaken with a German sheppard please), touring central Florida over the weekend. "Dry bottle tasting" as it is called here, in other words signing bottles with no possibility to sample the wines at a few Costco stores of the Orlando area which were at this occasion case stacking two our our wines.

Not only was the welcome very enthusiastic by the consumers, but, magic of the wine trade, it was also the occasion to see some old acquaintances, including Oliver Slinker the retired Pennsylvania Liquor Board commissioner pictured calling one of his long time wine friend and former distributor Mr Mongolis, now both retired in Florida. Also a great occasion to make new friends of whom some Canadians escaping from their hard winters at home...

A special warm thank you to all the Costco staff, especially Brendon Mc Gyver for his assistance in helping set up my much desired audio visual equipment. Also so nice to see old time Wildman friend Dave Bertoli who shares both the same virus and passion for wine ;-)

At the Costco store at Altalonte springs on Saturday, we were given a state of the art TV display, right next to a seafood demo allowig us to present the many interesting pictures of the vineyards, cellar, family and a frightening historical one, in colour, taken by my grand father from his house in 1942. Just two years later we welcomed the liberators of the 36th Texan rangers on their arrival December 5, 1944 with joy, relief and the best wine we had been saving...

With new Frederick Wildman state manager Kirk Baker, in just one Saturday, over 120 bottles were sold and signed and again meeting new Hugel afficionados that included old time friend John Leahey. We are definitely in "peoples' business" and wine is indeed a social lubricant !

... and it kept on getting better. Mind you getting a Frenchman to work in a store on a Sunday is a real "tour de force" too ! The Costco staff went out of their way and high in the air to make our wines best introduced to their clients with a high tech, sleek, and most impressive display. By the end of the day Kirk Baker was starting to feel he was the new boss ;-)

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