August 20, 2015 | By RJS Craft Winemaking
Getting there is half the fun
Like so many things we do for ourselves, this holds true for many of the wine lovers that make wine in my store. Obviously the best part of making your own wine is enjoying that first sip of a new vintage, the anticipation of the aroma and the taste of new wine. And today, more and more customers are seeing winemaking as not only a way to make something for themselves at great savings, but a fun and social activity to enjoy with friends. We wanted to create a store where all our customers could interact and have fun doing what they love to do… making great wine! With a few tables and bar stools, we turned it into a little winemaking lounge where it’s easy to get everyone involved and having fun.
Better than another bar night
A big part of our new business is from younger customers who are looking for a fun and simple activity they can share with friends. Often it’s 2 or 3 wine lovers who come to make a favourite wine. The RJS Craft Winemaking kits typically make about 30 bottles, so they are each are going home with 10-15 bottles. Many make it a regular thing, making 3 or 4 vintages over the year, and also adding specialty wines as well.
This has led to a trend among our craft winemakers here at Wine 4 You… group dates! Traditionally you have your pottery nights and your paint nights… but come on, I may be biased but I can’t think of a better craft night than one where you leave with your very own wine.
Wine for your wedding?
I had a wedding party come in that made their experience not only fun but also very meaningful. A wonderful maid of honour arranged for a fun bridal shower at the store AND kept it a secret from the bride. She brought the groom in to select the wine for their wedding and help start the winemaking process. On the shower day she brought the bride, the bride’s mom, and 10 friends in to bottle the wine… wasn’t a bad thing that she brought chocolate fondue too! A special label with the bride and groom’s initials described how the groom chose this wine for his bride. It was a great time, and we felt privileged to be involved in this special celebration.
We even have groups that have made making craft wine a regular activity. We get to see them come in with bright smiles ready to work on their next batch. The day is always full of laughs, pictures, and sometimes a few little disputes over who gets to be the “supervisor” that time.
These are the things that make running Wine 4 You such a pleasure. To us, craft winemaking is much more than the end result – a beautifully crafted and aged wine. It’s also the social aspect of getting together with friends and family to produce a great batch of wine you can all enjoy together.