Sea Smoke Grappa

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Stan Harris
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#1 Post by Stan Harris » December 19th, 2013, 10:45 am

I'm curious if anyone has just received their 2011 Eau de Sea just recently shipped. Mine is delayed as it finds it's way from Cali via a freind. I'd be interested in TNs as this will be my first Grappa. So anyone cracked it open yet?

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ATaylor
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#2 Post by ATaylor » December 19th, 2013, 7:55 pm

I thought about it, but have too many great grappas at home already. Plus I found Sea Smoke's approach of sending an email to say "buy our grappa and we will guarantee you access to our pinots" to be rather poor.
Last edited by ATaylor on December 20th, 2013, 6:55 pm, edited 2 times in total.
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#3 Post by Rick.T » December 19th, 2013, 8:08 pm

ATaylor wrote:I thought about it, but have too many great grappas at home already. Plus I found Sea Smoke's approach of sending an email to say "buy our grappa and we will guarantee you access to our pintos" to be rather poor.
+1

I got the same email and opted not to purchase wine I have no interest in. If I don't get any future allocations, oh well. I like Sea Smoke but they do have allot of competition.
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#4 Post by brigcampbell » December 19th, 2013, 8:16 pm

I'm on the waiting list, actually just never purchased when offered. I received this the other day.
At this time, we are sold out of the current vintage of Pinot Noir and Chardonnay.  However, should you choose to purchase from the current allocation of Sea Spray and/or Eau De Sea Grappa, you will then become an active List member and will be assured access to future wines, including our highly anticipated 2012 Sea Smoke Pinot Noirs which will be released in the Spring of 2014.

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#5 Post by ky1em!ttskus » December 19th, 2013, 8:25 pm

I'm not a huge fan of the "buy this relatively unrelated product and we'll allow you to buy the stuff that you're actually interested in" approach. Wait a second. Allocation wineries are a miniature version of the horrible three-tier system! ;)

By the way, how was there not a thread on the Grappa and "buy it and you're in" offer?

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#6 Post by AndrewH » December 20th, 2013, 6:06 pm

Rick.T wrote:
ATaylor wrote:I thought about it, but have too many great grappas at home already. Plus I found Sea Smoke's approach of sending an email to say "buy our grappa and we will guarantee you access to our pintos" to be rather poor.
+1

I got the same email and opted not to purchase wine I have no interest in. If I don't get any future allocations, oh well. I like Sea Smoke but they do have allot of competition.
+1. Nor was i tempted by the the sparkling wine "offer" for the same entry to the wait list.
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#7 Post by Scott Brunson » December 20th, 2013, 6:28 pm

I think it's BS
Not a buyer for the last several years. Hopefully they will offer my allocation to an interested person.
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#8 Post by Russ Williams » December 20th, 2013, 8:11 pm

Rick.T wrote:
ATaylor wrote:I thought about it, but have too many great grappas at home already. Plus I found Sea Smoke's approach of sending an email to say "buy our grappa and we will guarantee you access to our pintos" to be rather poor.
+1

I got the same email and opted not to purchase wine I have no interest in. If I don't get any future allocations, oh well. I like Sea Smoke but they do have allot of competition.
This is beyond BS. I guess since the stock market is hitting all time highs, SS is confused and thinks it is 2007. I guess there truly is a sucker born every minute.
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Stan Harris
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#9 Post by Stan Harris » December 25th, 2013, 9:32 am

Wow, apparently seeking a TN is code for calling out the SS haters. Thanks for making this noob feel like a "sucker".

FWIW, received mine yesterday. Will wait to taste, but I can tell from the pretty box that it will be yummy.

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#10 Post by Stan Harris » December 25th, 2013, 9:43 am

And please don't think that these emails are something unique to SS. I received an email from the almighty SQN the other day saying they would guarantee my place in the list if I bought into their offering through A website called If Only.

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#11 Post by larry schaffer » December 25th, 2013, 9:46 am

Stan,

I guess there's different ways to look at this. Yep, there certainly are a lot of 'hater's out there . . . and for those, you'll 'never win'.

That said, I do agree with others that this marketing approach seems a little 'sketchy' - buy this and you'll get what you may really want. It's not the way I'd want to put my best foot forward.

That said, what if other wineries did this? Would the reaction be the same? For instance, what if SQN did this? My guess is that the Grappa would sell out faster than NOK - even if the ploy was the same . . .

Just something to think about . . .

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#12 Post by ky1em!ttskus » December 25th, 2013, 10:53 am

Please don't feel like we're attacking you at all, Stan. And we're not all SS haters. We, or at least I, have an issue with the marketing. I hope you enjoy the Grappa and the juice that will follow.

FYI: the SQN thing has at least two threads about it. That's slightly different because that $$ goes towards charity. Even still, snickering posts abound.

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#13 Post by Rick.T » December 25th, 2013, 10:53 am

Your talking about 2 wineries that are worlds apart; you can flip SQN wine or at a minimum get what you paid for it. On the other hand, you'd probably lose money with the SS. For me, it was a no-brainier; I am on too many Pinot lists as it is, so being forced to purchase Grappa to guarantee a spot on the list...not for me.

If Only is a charity that sells luxury goods via auction; starting at a $10K bid, you attempt to get a spot on the mailing list so you don't have to wait 6-8 years to get there. They also sell wine vacations, dinners, etc. I am on their mailing list just to check out the cool stuff I can't afford. I'd like to read the email SQN sent Stan as I think it was misunderstood.
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#14 Post by R. Gaston » December 25th, 2013, 11:02 am

Stan Harris wrote:And please don't think that these emails are something unique to SS. I received an email from the almighty SQN the other day saying they would guarantee my place in the list if I bought into their offering through A website called If Only.
SQN sells a spot on the list and donates the money to charity...not quite SeaSmoke. I still don't understand why people need to get allocated pinot from SS. There are numerous stores just in my area code that sells SS at list price. Wines have gotten better over the last couple of years.
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#15 Post by larry schaffer » December 25th, 2013, 11:50 am

Yep, the SQN 'If Only' concept is different - it's going towards charity and seems to be a worthy cause - not $$$ that are going into the winery's pockets.

And I was simply using SQN as an example - you can choose other trophy wineries should you prefer, or wineries that might be difficult to get on their lists such as Carlisle (wouldn't consider that a 'trophy' winery but some may not).

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#16 Post by DAVID GIBBS » December 25th, 2013, 12:00 pm

Hm...I received an email saying I could purchase some of the grappa and sparkling wine, but it didn't mention that I had to to receive my allocation, or that it would affect it in any way.
I ordered a bottle of the sparkling wine out of curiosity, and they sent me the grappa as well, at no extra charge.
I've been on the SS list from the beginning, but never purchased my full allocation, and only recently purchased more than a bottle or two.
I'm not a big fan of huge pinots, but I think SS at least attempts to balance them out, and I'm finding they age really, really well.
I'm just starting to really enjoy the '03s.
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#17 Post by Rick.T » December 25th, 2013, 7:42 pm

David, you didn't get that email because you are already on the list. This is what I got:

"We would like to begin by thanking you for your patience. We understand that waiting on a list is never fun, so we are excited to tell you that your wait is over! With the holidays fast approaching, we are pleased to offer you a winter 2013 allocation from Sea Smoke. At this time we are offering you an allocation of our 2011 Sea Smoke Sea Spray sparkling wine, in addition to the exciting debut bottling of our Sea Smoke Eau De Sea Grappa.

(Last paragraph)
"At this time, we are sold out of the current vintage of Pinot Noir and Chardonnay. However, should you choose to purchase from the current allocation of Sea Spray and/or Eau De Sea Grappa, you will then become an active List member and will be assured access to future wines, including our highly anticipated 2012 Sea Smoke Pinot Noirs which will be released in the Spring of 2014."

If I get another offer for their next allocation of PN & Chard I might purchase some; if not, I'll move on with no regrets. I was a little put off when I first got this email but after thinking about it, I am on way too many CA Pinot lists and in 2014 will be cutting back significantly and reallocating my purchases towards backfilling Burgundy, Bdx, N. Rhone and various Italian wines. Life is too short for me to get pissed about inconsequential issues like this.
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#18 Post by KevinD » January 17th, 2014, 4:50 am

Rick.T wrote:David, you didn't get that email because you are already on the list. This is what I got:

"We would like to begin by thanking you for your patience. We understand that waiting on a list is never fun, so we are excited to tell you that your wait is over! With the holidays fast approaching, we are pleased to offer you a winter 2013 allocation from Sea Smoke. At this time we are offering you an allocation of our 2011 Sea Smoke Sea Spray sparkling wine, in addition to the exciting debut bottling of our Sea Smoke Eau De Sea Grappa.

(Last paragraph)
"At this time, we are sold out of the current vintage of Pinot Noir and Chardonnay. However, should you choose to purchase from the current allocation of Sea Spray and/or Eau De Sea Grappa, you will then become an active List member and will be assured access to future wines, including our highly anticipated 2012 Sea Smoke Pinot Noirs which will be released in the Spring of 2014."

If I get another offer for their next allocation of PN & Chard I might purchase some; if not, I'll move on with no regrets. I was a little put off when I first got this email but after thinking about it, I am on way too many CA Pinot lists and in 2014 will be cutting back significantly and reallocating my purchases towards backfilling Burgundy, Bdx, N. Rhone and various Italian wines. Life is too short for me to get pissed about inconsequential issues like this.

That doesn't seem all that different from some other offerings. I have been on Cayuse for three years now and have yet to have had the opportunity to buy any Frogs, but I keep buying the lesser known labels in hopes that I get a future offering of the Bionic Frog. Same with Alban, I spent four years of buying Reva and Lorraine and never was offered a Seymour or Pandora. Though they don't come out and say it in an e-mail, that is the reality.
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#19 Post by Rick.T » January 17th, 2014, 9:57 am

KevinD wrote:
Rick.T wrote:David, you didn't get that email because you are already on the list. This is what I got:

"We would like to begin by thanking you for your patience. We understand that waiting on a list is never fun, so we are excited to tell you that your wait is over! With the holidays fast approaching, we are pleased to offer you a winter 2013 allocation from Sea Smoke. At this time we are offering you an allocation of our 2011 Sea Smoke Sea Spray sparkling wine, in addition to the exciting debut bottling of our Sea Smoke Eau De Sea Grappa.

(Last paragraph)
"At this time, we are sold out of the current vintage of Pinot Noir and Chardonnay. However, should you choose to purchase from the current allocation of Sea Spray and/or Eau De Sea Grappa, you will then become an active List member and will be assured access to future wines, including our highly anticipated 2012 Sea Smoke Pinot Noirs which will be released in the Spring of 2014."

If I get another offer for their next allocation of PN & Chard I might purchase some; if not, I'll move on with no regrets. I was a little put off when I first got this email but after thinking about it, I am on way too many CA Pinot lists and in 2014 will be cutting back significantly and reallocating my purchases towards backfilling Burgundy, Bdx, N. Rhone and various Italian wines. Life is too short for me to get pissed about inconsequential issues like this.

That doesn't seem all that different from some other offerings. I have been on Cayuse for three years now and have yet to have had the opportunity to buy any Frogs, but I keep buying the lesser known labels in hopes that I get a future offering of the Bionic Frog. Same with Alban, I spent four years of buying Reva and Lorraine and never was offered a Seymour or Pandora. Though they don't come out and say it in an e-mail, that is the reality.

I agree, guess it boils down to how bad you really want to stay on the list.
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#20 Post by Chris Seiber » January 17th, 2014, 10:35 am

Rhys just put out an Alesia offer and said if you buy some, you'll start getting Rhys allocations this spring. Wineries use leverage when they can, I don't really fault them for it, they have a business to run.

All you have to do is . . . do nothing if the offer doesn't appeal to you. No harm. But in this case, I agree, I wouldn't buy the sparkler and grappa just to get onto the Sea Smoke list; I don't think the wait is that long just to wait normally.

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#21 Post by Rick.T » January 17th, 2014, 1:23 pm

I did take the Alesia to get the upcoming allocation. I've been riding on others allocations in the past and really love the wine. It was a no brainer.
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#22 Post by KevinD » February 14th, 2014, 10:01 am

Anyone try the SS Grappa yet? Thoughts?
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#23 Post by J Sullivan » February 14th, 2014, 10:46 am

Surprised that Sea Smoke Eau De Sea Grappa isn't DOCG. Clearly an inferior product compared to their Grand Cru Pinot Noir.
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#24 Post by Saul Mutchnick » February 14th, 2014, 11:12 am

Stan Harris wrote:Will wait to taste, but I can tell from the pretty box that it will be yummy.
By that standard, almost all grappa is pretty yummy. I'd be curious to see how it turns out--they have a DSP registered so they're distilling on-site, which should eliminate a lot of traditional grappa problems (namely how the pomace is handled before distillation). That said, there's a lot you can screw up with a white spirit like that.
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#25 Post by Stan Harris » March 15th, 2014, 10:59 am

So back to the topic, I am curious on whether ayone has tasted this yet. Better still, for those of you who have grappa know-how, can you guys point me to a quality grappa or two that I could use as a barometer for when I finally do try the SS?

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#26 Post by Paul Miller » March 15th, 2014, 11:07 am

Nonino http://www.grappanonino.it/en/

I like their Chardonnay based one.

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