Friday, January 15, 2010

Personal Wine Celebrates 10 Years with You!

The concept was conceived in a totally cliche way...A BAR NAPKIN with some writing. I wish I remembered to keep it but unfortunately that night was spent celebrating what has become a pretty great idea. It was 2000, and I had just graduated from college. I had a small business and did a little day trading, taking advantage of the dot-com boom. A few weeks after graduation a friend of mine who subsequently now owns the Texas Hunt Lodge in Kerrville, TX. Aaron and I spent the first few weeks finding Texas wineries to participate in the personalization of wines. Because wine laws had not changed since prohibition for the most part, it became a challenge to craft laws and interpret them to allow us to personalize labels. Wine labels are actually governed by Federal and State agencies. Eventually, 9 months later, we got the green light from the government.

We launched a site within a few weeks, bought a printer and actually returned a few too. Sporadically orders came in and we filled them, and shipped them out. It was a true start-up, self funded and we were two young punks in the wine business! Another cause for celebration...

The phones kept ringing about availability of other wines, Australian, California, Chilean and French wines. It took a lot of time to convince winemakers who have long fought to preserve brands to release in small quantities their premium labels but eventually we won the trust. The quality of the wines kept improving which was my goal all along. I realized very quickly that my other competitors had what we call "plonk" juice, wine unsold at the winery which was sold as blending wines to other wineries to increase production. In my opinion, that's cheating the customer, and you're never going to win their hearts by providing them with substandard product. Three years later we got our first massive order, 12,000 bottles for a movie premier, all labeled by hand. I had no fingerprints after that order, but I was a very happy man.

Fast forward to 2007 up to the present day. I know the three reasons for our success are attributed to the quality of the wines we select, the quality of the labels we use and the fanatical customer service that we provide. Our mission is simple: Provide the highest quality product to the most meticulous customer. As the CEO and Founder of Personal Wine, my team and I would like to thank you for 10 Years of Business. We appreciate and love each customer and we will continue to deliver what we feel is the best personalized wines on the market.

Wishing you health, prosperity and good wine in 2010,
Alex Andrawes (In the picture, far right, inspecting some pinot noir on the vine)

1 comment:

Block talk said...

I'm in a wine MBA program at Sonoma State University. I thought I was going to be unique with this idea. Your site looks great. Real easy to use. I would only reccomend trying to broaden your selection of vineyard source. Nice work overall. Let me know if you'd ever want help.
Andrew Blok