Ladies and Gentlemen,
Earlier this week, we lost someone that was a pivotal figure in the Colorado wine scene, and it really shows that too often, our perception of of the world is far more bleak than the world itself. He was a kind, generous man. I remember the dinners at Tante Louise, where, once a year, the old hats of the wine and restaurant world in Denver would get together and open amazing bottles of vino, share stories about those who had come and gone, and express their thanks at the fact they are some of the luckiest bastards on earth. Why? To be in an industry where competitors were buddies and that the product was one that saved wars, and ignited long-standing friendships. One, where you walked in the door of a restaurant or wine shop, and the proprietor was happy to see you. As those reflected on the year, some were better off than others, and it showed. There were tense discussions amongst friends, not all was rosy. I can say, it was those individuals that shaped me and my views regarding this wonderful and unique subculture.
Unfortunately, that side of the business, what many in the industry refer to as ‘the business of wine, not the wine business’, can affect us more than we know. We shall never really understand how the pain became unbearable, but, one thing is certain…
The wine world is better for having known you. Thanks, Mr. Steinke.