I’ve done it. Today I launched what will most likely end up as one of the biggest projects of my life and potentially the biggest risk I’ve taken to this day. I’ve officially began the process of creating my winery.
The amount of thought and research that I’ve put into this over the last two years cannot be quantified. Many things had to come together for me to have the chance to attempt to build my own winery. Getting the part-time gig as winemaker for Running Brook was a critical step to get to this day. Never before in my life have I felt how the luck of being in the right place at the right time could end up having such a dramatic influence in my future and the future of my family.
I’ll be honest and say that over the last few weeks while pondering this decision I felt very nervous. However, once I made the decision to go for it, the nervousness immediately started to change into a sense of excitement. Ideas are popping into my head… I can already visualize the next crush season, the labels on the bottles, people having fun and chatting while sipping my wine at the tasting room. A couple of years from now I may look back at this day and say to myself… what in the world was I thinking? I may end up as another victim in the cemetery of failed wineries. But so be it. I’ll take the risk instead of questioning myself for the rest of my life… what if I had done it?
So, what’s next...?
I’ve registered as a business at the local and state level but the biggest hurdle is yet to come… obtaining the necessary licenses from the TTB (Alcohol and Tobacco Tax and Trade Bureau) and the Massachusetts ABCC (Alcoholic Beverages Control Commission). It involves a lot of paperwork and a considerable amount of time (3 months or longer). After submitting all of my applications, I will start thinking about other aspects such as the brand image. I’ll be counting on you for opinions and feedback on some of the decisions that I will have to make. But here is what I can already share with you today…
The name of the winery: TRAVESSIA
The place: Downtown New Bedford
TRAVESSIA is a Portuguese word for Journey or Passage. There were other names but once I thought of this one, I quickly and easily realized that it would provide me with many opportunities to tie it with what I want the winery and the wines to be all about. Besides I wanted to avoid naming the winery after a place or the family’s last name.
The winery will be in the downtown area of New Bedford. A few months ago I failed to convince the owners of a small piece of land in Dartmouth that I was the right person to take over their property. In retrospect, that was a good thing. I’ve since realized that building an Urban Winery is more in line with my immediate objective. The number one question on everyone’s minds… where do the grapes come from? Well, certainly not from the roof tops :-)... That’s a topic that deserves its own post but I can tell you that the vast majority of the wines made by TRAVESSIA will be from grapes grown right here in Southeast New England.
Feel free to comment here or send me emails of encouragement… or discouragement :-)