Friday, March 21, 2008

Hunters' wine - and why it matters

Well, this is interesting: I found an article this morning by L. Pierce Carson in the Napa Valley Register about a company that markets wine to hunters: Gauge Wines.

Click here to read the story. But some of the highlights?

  • “Gauge Wines aren’t inspired by the meals you cook,” says (vintner Trent) Moffett. “They’re inspired by the meals you catch.”

  • “We want to get to people who are just starting to drink wine,” Moffett says. “This isn’t wine to swish and spit. This is wine for drinking. This is wine for celebrating.”

  • “It’s for people who want to enjoy wine but not feel the need to talk about it,” (said hunter John) Putnam.
Taste is not my concern here - that's a personal matter. What I like about this concept (and the article too), is that it's one more positive message about hunters.

I've been watching what the Humane Society is up to, and I can tell you pretty much every single anti-hunting campaign it launches portrays hunters in the ugliest light - brazen, callous, cruel, wasteful and polluting. The organization wants to end hunting for anything but subsistence, so this tactic shouldn't come as a surprise.

But here's the effect it has: Because most Americans don't hunt, they form their impressions of hunters based on whatever messages are out there in public. And because hunters don't have a comparable PR machine, there aren't many positive messages out there - there's just the latest Humane Society rant about canned hunts, dove hunting or Internet hunting.

What hunter has not been asked by a non-hunter, "Do you actually eat what you kill?"

Well, duh, we think to ourselves before assuring them that no hunter in his right mind would waste what he worked so hard to get.

But we shouldn't be surprised non-hunters think this when the Humane Society focuses on "trophy hunting" with the implication that hunters take only the trophy, and when it puts out propaganda saying hunters use doves for target practice and don't even eat the birds.

Hunters make the mistake of thinking that the Humane Society's chief threat is legislation it sponsors all over the country. In reality, the hateful seed it plants in the minds of Americans is far more dangerous.

That's why this story out of Napa matters: It's one more message that portrays us in an accurate light, not as a bunch of half-wits swilling a case of beer and cornering former zoo animals in a fenced enclosure to blow them away.

It's a good message, and we need a lot more like it.

Interested in the wine? The company's website is here. And if you live in California, Texas, Louisiana or South Carolina, those are the test markets where you can find it.

© Holly A. Heyser 2008


Anonymous said...

Maybe a little off topic, but FlashReport has ventured into Nor Cal Cazadora territory -- almost -- with a post about potential fishing restrictions off the coast.

Of interest to Mr. Cazadora as well?

NorCal Cazadora said...

It is! Thanks for pointing that out - I was aware of that provision of the constitution but hadn't thought of it in terms of guaranteeing a right to fish.

I fully admit that I'm more a hunter than an angler - though I do both. But I've been to a F&G meeting and plan to attend more, so I'm pretty sure I'll be watching the issue referenced in the Flash Report.