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Sometimes it pays to be a player…

…and sometimes you pay to be a player.

Today, I received a fancy, pyramidal container in the mail from the Robert Mondavi Winery.  Inside the container was a scrolled invitation to an event called Taste³.  It turns out that Robert Mondavi has extended an invitation to 300 people to attend a three day event from July 13-16, 2006.  To quote from the invitation, “imagine thirty of the most compelling thinkers, chefs, winemakers, journalists, artisans, authors, and executives as speakers.  Now imagine over three hundred attendees who are every bit as influential, passionate, and tapped-in as the presenters.”  The event takes place in Napa at the Copia center for Wine, Food, and the Arts.

Now I have to say that I was flattered to receive the invite.  I decided to go to the website touting the event to find out more (  This first page can’t really be quoted.  The description of the event will cause your mouth to water with anticipation of the great wine and food to be tasted during the three day event.  Your brain begins to swell thinking about the wine greats who will impart some of their vast knowledge over the same time period.  Then, I decided to find out what this event costs (  The page is tactful.  It says that the cost is $2,350 per person.  If you haven’t been fortunate enough to receive an invitation, contact the winery and if you’re willing to part with this small sum, you may be able to attend.

Well, I know that the website budget can’t afford to contribute to my attendance, so I’m going to see if there’s more info available (  I was semi-impressed.  There were a few techno-geeks listed and then a few of Wino Bob’s flaming liberal buddies (part of that statement isn’t true…that’s right, our Bob doesn’t have any flaming liberal buddies).  The rest of the speakers will be named later.

Ok.  Maybe I got the invitation due to the April Fool’s Day press release about the Spec.  Maybe I got one because I’m a player.  Or, maybe I got one because I can pay.   What should I do?  More to follow.

Wino Wally
Baltimore, MD
April 5, 2006


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