A Wine Student’s Report from Napa Valley College: Cultural Appreciation of Wine

What a great class this is.

I’m a history buff and little did I know, how much history is involved in this class.

The class is taught by Paul Wagner. Paul is the principal of a marketing communications agency with a no-nonsense approach to combining the strategies and tactics of marketing, public relations, advertising and graphic design to achieve the marketing goals of our clients. Blah, blah, blah….I think it’s just an excuse for him to write off trips to exotic locations to tour wineries, restaurants and rub elbows with the elite of the world’s wine regions. In all seriousness, Paul is the kind of teacher that keeps his students coming back for more. I think there are two students in this calls that are taking Cultural Appreciation of Wine for the 2nd time. I can’t say as I blame them. It’s a darn good class.

This class is a required class for those in the certificate program for Wine Sales and Marketing in the Viticulture and Winery Technology Department of Napa Valley College. I’m one of those people.

Class started August 18. After a long summer off, I was glad to get back to NVC and the VWT department. The class is Tuesday nights 7-10. From previous experience, those night classes can be tough after a long day at work, but this class in particular is fascinating to me, so I think I’ll be ok.

Paul gave us a very interesting exercise on the first night of class.

The whole class, with Paul as the tour guide, took a trip through time.

We stepped outside of the classroom and started out in 2009. For every 5 steps we took, went back in time a decade, and Paul told us what was happening, who was a mover and shaker of the time period and what role wine was playing in history and culture.

1960, Napa Valley was a sleepy agricultural area with a few wineries, but for the most part, wine was a relatively small player in the local economy.

1920, Prohibition. 1863, the first wine grape vines were imported to Europe from America. Phylloxera ravaged Europe. 1525, Hernando Cortez, as Governor of Mexico, ordered the planting of grapes.

We walked farther and farther from the school, in the dark, with the occasional student shining a light from a cell phone to lead the way. We ended our journey some 2,500 to 3,000 years BC.
We were near a small lake with few lights. This made the stars blaze bright. Paul pointed out to use that this was the TV of the time. People stared into the heavens for answers, entertainment and just plain wonder.
buy aceon generic https://andnewbloonline.com/aceon.html over the counter

And the earliest recordings of man and wine together were still some 2,000 years away in the past. Wine and man have a long past together. Paul finished the journey with a quote from a famous American.

“We hear of the conversion of water into wine at the marriage in Cana as of a miracle. But this conversion is, through the goodness of God, made every day before our eyes. Behold the rain which descends from heaven upon our vineyards, and which incorporates itself with the grapes, to be changed into wine; a constant proof that God loves us, and loves to see us happy.”– Benjamin Franklin

I’m not particularly religious, but that is a great quote and it says much for the impact that wine has on humankind.

Anthony Blackburn is a student at Napa Valley College in the Viticulture and Winery Technology Department. He is also the Student Sales and Marketing Intern responsible for selling the wines made by the students in the student winery. www.napavalley.edu/winery

3 thoughts on “A Wine Student’s Report from Napa Valley College: Cultural Appreciation of Wine

  1. good stuff Tony. Maybe even I could appreciate one of Paul's classes. I would do it for the travel and prestige too 😉

  2. We will begin selling our wines at our Big Holiday Event, starting 11/5/2009.

    We will have a website that wine can be purchased on.

    We will have 2008 Sauvignon Blanc, 2008 Pinot Noir, 2008 Chardonnay and 2008 Rose available for sale. Other wines will be released at future events.

    I will post more details as they come.

Comments are closed.