Campaign Will Increase Demand for Dry Creek’s Signature Grape by Partnering with Chefs & Influencers Accessible by Three Direct Flight Markets
Healdsburg, CA: On September 30, 2020 the Winegrowers of Dry Creek Valley (WDCV) were ecstatic to receive news of funding for their proposed CDFA Specialty Crop Block Grant titled, “Consumer Direct to Dry Creek Valley: Increasing Demand for California’s Signature Grape, Zinfandel.”
The 3-year project will boost awareness of Dry Creek Valley Zinfandel by joining together with chefs and influencers in three direct flight markets (Denver, Seattle & Phoenix) from Sonoma County Airport to create food and wine pairings that consumers can cook at home, sample via in-market events, and ultimately encourage visitation to the Dry Creek Valley region.
“This grant will give us the opportunity to showcase the best of Dry Creek Valley Zinfandel. The majority of our wineries are largely direct to consumer so in market exposure is extremely beneficial in expanding their customer base. Given the recent struggles with tourism and on-premise dining, this funding comes at a critical time,” highlights WDCV Board President and Winemaker for Mill Creek Vineyards, Jeremy Kreck.
In each market, the WDCV will find and partner with a local Chef & influencer who will highlight the diversity and quality of Dry Creek Zinfandel through social media content such as cooking demonstrations, videos, behind the scenes content and other photography. The chef will craft a unique recipe to pair with Dry Creek Valley Zinfandel that showcases this premium yet accessible grape in its best light. Each market will then showcase these pairings in their own unique event for consumers where Dry Creek Valley wineries are invited to pour their wines and tell their stories.
As the original campaign was proposed prior to the COVID-19 outbreak, there may need to be modified safety measures instilled at these future events to ensure safety for guests and participants. Ideas such as modified virtual tastings and in market seated tastings versus walk-around tastings will be considered.
The campaign addresses the unique position of direct-to-consumer sales. Dry Creek Valley is comprised of small, family-owned wineries that sell 77 percent of their wine directly through tasting rooms and wine club subscriptions. In a 2017 Wine Opinions study of wine consumers, the top factors driving winery visitation were recommendations from friends and family and trial of wine from a winery in a restaurant. With restaurant visitation on the decline, wineries need to find new ways to encourage trial and discovery.
This project addresses the priorities of increasing marketing opportunities for California specialty crops by leveraging the California Grown identity; creating economic opportunities for specialty crop producers through specialty crop market development activities that focus on local, regional, national and international markets by leveraging the unique qualities of specialty crops grown in in California; and promoting California grown specialty crops by highlighting the diverse stories of California’s rich agricultural history. The project will boost direct-to-consumer wine sales and bottle prices with benefits translating to all California Zinfandel producers. Success will be measured using surveys and industry sales data.
ABOUT THE WDCV: Dry Creek Valley is a premium winegrowing region in northern Sonoma County, California. Winegrowers of Dry Creek Valley® (WDCV) is a 501c6 non-profit trade association of over 60 wineries and 150 winegrape growers. Formed in 1989, the association represents a multi-generational family community of vintners and growers committed to growing high-quality fruit, producing world class wines, and welcoming visitors to experience Wine Paired with Life®.
Learn more about Dry Creek Valley & the WDCV at www.drycreekvalley.org