Making wine at Boeing

by Eve Resnick on March 4, 2008

in General

Yes, Boeing employees are making wine! I’m not joking: it was in the International Herald Tribune issue of last weekend.

What’s the deal? Thirty years ago, some Boeing employees created a wine tasting club. Nothing fancy, nothing original. In later years, it changed into a beer and wine making group offering tastings, trips, equipment and grape purchases. The club members buy grapes from vineyards, store them in a Boeing facility and crush them with rental equipment. They also attend seminars with wine makers for their education.

Results? Thousands of bottles of Cabernet Sauvignon, Chardonnay or Syrah were produced over the years by Boeing employees. About a dozen wineries of the Washington area were started by former Boeing employees. Others used their experience to get a job in a winery. Brad Sherman, vice-president of the club for wine, told journalist Kristina Shevory that many people asked to join but were rejected because they weren’t employed by Boeing.

Those people shouldn’t be too disappointed. There is an alternative solution: the Crushpad experience, launched in San Francisco, California, in 2004. Crushpad provides grapes from the West Coast’s best vineyards, a wine making team and a winery focused on making wine in small lots. Customers choose their level of involvement, and Crushpad does the rest. At the end of the wine making process, customers get their own “cult” wine. The customer monitors the wine making process through a private account, a blog and some videos. Crushpad also launched Crushnet, its online wine community, to serve over 2000 Crushpad clients that live in more than 35 states and eight countries.

Web 2.0 is full of resources for people with energy and imagination !

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