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Consumer Perception of Colorado and Regional Wine

The third Drink Local Wine session was led by Richard Mauro, Colorado Springs Gazette. The three panelists included Chris Anthony, professional skier; Jennifer Broome, Morning Meteorologist KDVR-TV and host of “Swept Away with Jennifer Broome”; and Jay Leeuwenberg, former NFL player. Richard Mauro began the session on consumer perceptions. He introduced the panel of wine consumers.

The panelists were asked to think about going into a restaurant and deciding what wine to drink. Jay said he would look for a wine depending on what he wants to drink. He doesn’t specifically look for a Colorado wine and he is seldom offered a Colorado wine. Jay does like to try new wines. Jennifer is a California Cab drinker that grew up in Texas. She does like new experiences and likes to step out of the box and try Colorado wine. Chris was impacted by the wines in Italy. In Italy the wines are regional with a story. He hopes that Colorado can become what Italy is when it comes to passion and a story about wine.

Richard then asked what the panel would think about when going into a wine shop. Jennifer seeks out knowledgeable people in wine shops. Jennifer mentioned that Colorado is a patio state. People like to eat outside and have a connection to the local movement. Jay mentioned that it was difficult for him to get into Colorado wines because he doesn’t know the stories associated with Colorado wines. He usually goes into a liquor store and asks them what they like.

Richard asked what the panelists think of when they think of Colorado wines. Chris said he was in awe that Colorado even had wines. He suggests that the industry should tell their story and get the Colorado wine knowledge out there.

In a message to the wine industry, Jay suggested that Colorado needs to make wine so that the consumer will have a good experience. Jennifer suggested that wineries need to get on the social media wagon. Social media opens up the world and wineries need to play in the social world. Chris wants to see Colorado winemakers embrace what they have and not try to be like someone or somewhere else. Chris and Jennifer suggested that the Colorado wine regions need to be marketed in a way that consumers can understand.


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