Critical mass – “In social dynamics, critical mass is a sufficient number of adopters of an innovation in a social system so that the rate of adoption becomes self-sustaining and creates further growth.” — Wikipedia
This was the theme on Tuesday, September 16th at the official launch of the new Vintage Atlantic Wine Region at Auburn Road Winery in southern New Jersey. This new project has been in the works since last year and endeavors to make the Mid-Atlantic more of a centralized wine destination.
Vintage Atlantic is comprised of six well established wine trails in southeast Pennsylvania, Delaware, Maryland’s Eastern Shore and South Jersey. The varied terroirs of this region will provide an excellent experience for the wine traveler, and a bevy of world class restaurants, lodging and activities that come with close, convenient access to a major city. The winery owners & winemakers in the area live and breathe agritourism, which is the act of bringing visitors to the farm to promote the locally harvested goods. This new wine region is projected to accelerate critical mass of the local wine culture about five to ten years.
The region is a roughly ninety mile radius, approximately the same as the Finger Lakes and brings together over forty wineries. And that doesn’t count the dozens of other local wine producers not encompassed within the Vintage Atlantic.
As a local wine enthusiast for many years, and a promoter for the last few, this is very exciting for me on a personal level. I’ve seen the local wine culture thrive and this is a natural progression. World class wine is being produced here, and it’s time that American winery geeks realize that you don’t have to go to California or Upstate New York to find it.
Sarah Willoughby of the Greater Wilmington Convention and Visitors Bureau, spawned this brainchild when commuting between Delaware & South Jersey for separate wine marketing events. She was obviously enthusiastic about this new endeavor as she spoke yesterday to the local winemakers, winery owners, writers, marketers and politicos that attended the event at Auburn Road.
It was really neat to see some familiar faces together in one room yesterday. I touched base with friends from Penns Woods, Paradocx, Crow, Brandywine Valley Wine Trail and Pinot Boutique just to name a few.
Scott and Jules Donnini of Auburn Road were excellent hosts at their beautiful facility in Salem County. If you are a serious wine enthusiast, or just enjoy hanging out sampling the local juice (I’m guilty of both), visit a local winery today. There are a wide range of styles to suit every palate
Thanks to my readers and also to all of the fantastic people who are part of the local wine community. This is ready to take off. It’s just the beginning, trust me.