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I've been thinking about this issue with Lieb Cellars. I've read several of the articles, including the Yahoo piece where about 2500 people displayed irrational ignorance and appalling reading comprehension, and +Lenn Thompson's post at NYCR, which I thought was extremely well balanced.

Here is my thought - I posted it as a comment on the Yahoo piece.

That 6-10% quoted is not "less than a dollar per bottle of the 19.11 price" it is a percentage of total sales at the winery... generated by the sale of the 9/11 wines (all of them) This amounts to about $25000 since they started making these wines 10 years ago. (first release, 2004) For the new 10yr anniversary wines, a good guess of the donation going to the Museum and Memorial Fund will be about $11,000. Its not a life changer, but I don't know of a charitable fund that would laugh at that amount.

(thanks Lenn for doing the math and the research)

I'm curious. I assume no one ranting about this memorial wine purchased any "We love America" "Never Forget" t-shirts, "Yellow Ribbon" car magnets or t-shirts to support troops (purchased from Walmart or the sidewalk vendor, whom I'm sure sent that money straight to the 3rd Marine Expeditionary Force troops to buy after market armor, or The Marine Family Support groups to pay the light bills of called up reservists) Or perhaps you boycotted the CD that was produced after 9/11 from the Concert for New York? Wait, you only bought those things because those items were all 100% of the profit, including production costs, donated to a charitable fund right? Because weren't those all horribly exploitative, profit mongering <insert appropriate expletive here> taking advantage of a national tragedy, just like Lieb Cellars? </sarcasm> </irony>

Folks at Lieb live in NY (that's where Long Island is, in case you didn't know), and they lost people in that tragedy, just like many others. They are New Yorkers. They did this to raise funds to do something good - they've been doing it since their 2002 vintage - when we were all opening our wallets, our veins (giving blood) and our hearts to heal.

I'm yet to figure out why this FDNY/EMS group would contact Bourdain or his (former) restaurant about carrying the wine, and not contact the Memorial Fund people or the winery itself to ask about motivations. It was approved by the committee running the Memorial and Museum Fund.

Lets make an attempt to understand, instead of condemning. Perhaps the marketing wasn't the best idea - but they've actually been making a wine along these lines since 2002. If Bourdain and this FDNY/EMS group was that worked up about it, you'd think someone would have started raising a little media hell sometime in the last 9 YEARS?

This is a good thing, benefiting charitable organizations that need funds. Stop with the hate. That's what caused this problem to begin with.
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Tammy Colson's profile photoRichard Auffrey's profile photoShennee Rutt's profile photo
6 comments
 
As I mentioned on Lenn's post, it has not helped Lieb's position that they have failed to issue an official statement on this matter. They have had plenty of time already to compose a response but have said nothing. Even the defenders of Lieb seem to feel there have been some marketing mistakes, so why hasn't Lieb stepped forward and acknowledged those mistakes?
 
I agree Richard. A statement should be issued. They've got 500 cases of wine to sell - but perhaps they know that in the great scheme of things, those people complaining wouldn't be buying their wine anyway?

To be perfectly honest, I don't think what they did is a bad thing... they are forthright in what they are doing, and have been all along. I'm not sure what they could do differently. That, I suppose, is the conundrum.
 
Those complaining about the wine might not have bought the wine anyways, but those reading all the negative comments were potential customers. And they are seeing Lieb remain silent throughout this controversy.
 
No argument there. Though, I wonder what percentage of those negative comments are on outlets that their customers or potential customers actually read - are we who pay attention to the industry the ones looking for a response from them? (not necessarily customers of the winery, but just those that read wine news)

I think something needs to be said - but good grief... I wouldn't want to be the person writing that PR. I'd be inclined to start with "Did you even pay attention? This is not a new product"
 
A wine to commemorate 9/11? What is wrong with people! Seriously!
 
The long island ny Winery has been making a wine that contributes a portion of profits to the 9/11 museum memorial fund since just after 9/11. $25000 has been raised for the charity. I dunno shennee, its a good cause, like komen or animals (both big "charity wine" causes) It honors those lost in the wine world on that day as far as I'm concerned. But I understand if you find it distasteful. Some do. I just don't like the vitrol many people are spewing on this issue. These are not bad people. They lost friends on 9/11 too. 
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