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[0:00] Yes especially it's 7:00 in the morning here.
[0:04] Well it's early here in Arizona and we have the pirate broadcast.
We're live now with Rob and I just want to thank you so much if you're joining us live. If you're not joining us live and join us to replay just type in replay and leave your comments below.
And I just loved the opportunity to have a conversation with you and talk about what Rob is doing and why he's doing it.
Interesting people doing interesting things here on the pirate broadcast.
Rob welcome to the show. How are you this fine day.
[0:37] Hey Russ great for having me. Thank you for having me. No I'm doing great yourself.
[0:41] Excellent excellent. I'm going to you I'm going to let everyone know that they can find you at the drunken grape.
And I wanted to dive in and talk about the drunken grape which is I love the domain name by the way. Thanks.
It's just fascinating for a small year or.
And I didn't realize I knew that wine had small years but I didn't realize that beer also had small yet.
So tell us the backstory on the drunken grape and how you got into the industry and why what you're doing right now for events and activities.
[1:17] Well I was at a crossroads about 10 years ago I went back into the hospitality business part time was actually bartending in a hotel the Ottawa Marriott Hotel which I still work there occasionally.
And it was in the I.T. business but before that actually it started my career at a university and in the cruise line business so it's tied to hospitality.
[1:42] So yeah.
[1:43] So anyway I had a company that's why I wanted to capture this because you're in the hospitality you're in I.T.
And then you're in the cruise industry which is entertainment for the most part right.
[1:59] Right. And I was part of the department I was in. And long story short why start with that type back career in hospitality at a university.
And then I want to move off and I went into I.T. for about five years and I got burned by a partner in the end.
So we had to split up the company and I was at a crossroads. So part of that was a lot of project management.
So I was looking at studying the project management at the time.
[2:26] So what got me started into the education side of wine as my late father sat me down used to be a pretty prolific guy.
Wine and beer maker himself these to grow up all these home brews and all these other concoctions he made and he had a lot of books on the subject as well as quite learned on it and he looked to me said Why do you want to go into a beaten path.
[2:46] Once you go study the wine world or get into the wine world instead and is probably the first time I really listened to him on career advice it actually worked out.
So it's a I have a lot to contribute a lot to thank him for that.
That side of the insulins so getting into the field.
[3:05] And yeah. From there I took courses got up to my w set advance certifications started working with it professionally and,
was working with an events company called the Drunken grape not starting out the drunken grape groovy grapes at the time.
So I'd worked with them for a while and in the end the owner want to pack it up.
He wasn't sure really what he wanted to do and he had other interests and he had a long run with it.
His wife has four children now so they were tied up with a lot of things.
So I set out to open up my own business and I'm struggling for a name I was going to name at Bacchus or Dionysus you know after the Greek or Roman god of wine.
And one day over Thanksgiving dinner is just over four years ago.
My stepmother turned to me the one in name. The drunken grape. We started laughing.
There no chance in hell this name is even available and sure enough the name was available for a business name in Canada.
Then the P.A. was available. The dot.com was tied up with someone else.
I trade eventually I registered the marks so they I actually owned the name the drunken grape and the person dropped the dot com off and I bought it on backwards like 9 bucks.
That's how I got back into that start I was kind of cool but it's it's been an exciting wrote day.
[4:24] I'm still in a lot of ways my early stages of business. My insurance process for years it's it's still a child and there's a lot of work to do well and we talked earlier before,
you know this this episode here in talking about the idea that,
there are a lot of wineries in their lot of people that are,
completely unaware of what.
[4:46] What you can do around events and activities and you know understanding the different wines and learning about it and there's an educational process that goes along with that.
Not only that with and with beer as well.
And what you're doing with these events in education time that together I think is unique and.
[5:08] Also highlighting with video some of the activities that the wineries are doing.
I know you've seen you know you've done some video and it's amazing amazing work that you've created.
And I think there's a lot of room for that. You know there's a lot of room for because I've always been you know that's half the reason I started the pirate broadcast is to highlight other people doing interesting things right in L.A..
[5:33] Yes. As I say cool concept the pirate.
[5:35] It's like OK well let's let's highlight some of these people just like you're highlighting wineries or breweries right.
[5:43] Well a lot of cases too. The big issue is the industry still largely mired partly in the past and I think things like trade shows to have their place moving forward particularly if they involve winning awards.
You know you hang a medal saying that you were second first second or third in the world or internationally or some big international competition on tasting your product wins it's going to help move it off the shelves.
It's going to really help leverage it and be at least a 10x multiplier just to use that kind of phrasing.
But you know the other problem with most conventional trade shows if they don't offer those accolades is often it's a big sunk cost.
So you know they're they're turning around and spending often about 30 grand for a weekend because by the time you rent the space,
and even a small six by six space costs thousands upon thousands of dollars without it even being staff that's just for the rental of the space in a trade show. Yeah.
And your story is limited because even if they do videographer and a trade show often they'll just capture you and capture maybe twelve or 20 other boosts and in a short branding video that they put out.
It's really about marketing what they offer from the next expo or the next event.
I found a lot of people really weren't doing a lot in the video space.
So I had a pretty good background on going on set and stage being assistant cruise director and the cruise line industry and moving forward having do done TV spots with.
[7:09] First groovy grapes and then for my own business the drunken grape.
Just here locally on TV so I was used to being on that type of platform already,
and a lot of people I think wait until either they're really really super educated and something where they have basically the HD equivalent which should be like a master of wine or in the service side the master Somalia and I in my world.
But there was very little presence on really bringing the story of wineries and breweries to life and video for somebody who had actually studied the Fields got educated and decided to deliver it to the public.
[7:47] Well and what I find fascinating and here's the reason why I love doing this show is if you look back and you connect the dots on the I.T.
Industry so you have the technology down to where you can actually tie these lists together,
you have the cruise industry that allows you the opportunity to see how entertainment can come together for a subject,
and how that can be pulled in and how you can pull people into the idea and then you have you know,
the skill set in being on screen right.
[8:23] So all of said you brought all those historical events together to create what is now the drunken grape and moving forward.
[8:32] So true I never really thought of it I always felt that was the essence of it.
But I think you put it in words better than I've ever really described it to somebody but it's it's true it's I think what we have to look at is a commonality sometimes in your background to get to the place where you probably should be.
Career wise life wise or business wise and you know we're always battling in some area to achieve that it's and never.
I think that's life's unfulfilled journey often in the end as you're always trying to finalize something in the end right. But it's.
[9:07] Yeah I think you're more about I think more about the journey though it is all about the journey it's all about the jury. And here's what I think.
I think if we could take one thing away from this show today is the fact that this is your perfect example of the accumulation of experience different experiences coming together to,
develop an idea that works for you.
It's your it's your idea. You know you've gone through the education of understanding wine and beer and spirits and everything that goes along with that along with the entertainment the I.T.
The the video everything everything else it's the accumulation of your journey that's come into fruition.
Finalizing this drunken grape episode here.
[10:00] And if you don't get mad at experts it's true what you're saying is very accurate I think for anybody that gets at least on the right path and you see a lot of people here on LinkedIn doing some amazing things.
It is a combination of experience and you take a look at a lot of the backgrounds of some some terrific.
I will use the word influencer but people who've actually got a very strong presence on the platform do a lot of things and it's congruent with what they do business wise they're career wise you can see in the back engine when you read. You could start to see where things correlate.
[10:30] Yeah yeah there is. And I think Steve Jobs said that you can't see it connecting the dots forward. You have to connect the dots looking backward.
WELL IT'S OLD SAYING TO WRITE. History repeats itself. Yeah it does. It does. It really does.
And also I think I think what's really beautiful about this is the that we also get to understand that we're all the same.
[10:55] You know we go through our journey we bounce off walls you know I.T. to wine is is a very big stretch right.
So you have to admit. Cruise industry you know wine a little closer.
[11:10] However it's it's just that little thing that you you look at and you think Wow that's fascinating.
That is incredibly fascinating.
And I'm just fascinated by it.
[11:22] And I just appreciate you being on the show Rob and thank you so much for being here.
And a lot of you will also think some of the people on the the feed Jordan Kenyatta Sherry man.
[11:40] Brenda you know there's people here watching this thing and I'm I'm humbled all the time by this because I mean I've been doing this type of,
work you know in broadcast I've been in advertising since 85 and so all of the different projects that I've developed over the time,
you know that we couldn't have done this five years ago.
You know that's true. And and it's just so amazing right now that we're at this point in the history where you could go on with a phone you can create you can develop you can deliver you can produce.
And that's the whole essence of the pirate broadcast is we don't need permission to do this. No permission needed. Right.
So we fire up our phone we firepower computer we fire up our connection.
And as long as we have internet and and a screen we can we can produce content.
And I think that's important for us to understand is linked in is such a fabulous community for connecting with people like yourself.
You know you're associated with.
You know I think I met you through J Andrews.
[12:48] Yeah. And I've had my show aired. Oh yeah.
[12:51] Yeah. So you're and you're the neighborhood you you're actually going to have coffee with.
[12:56] Oh yes sometimes yeah. Nice to see Jay a lot. But Life's busy right now for both of us.
So you come across each other sparingly and we're definitely we're definitely good friends just outside of the platform which is which is neat.
[13:09] Well I've I've made some terrific very,
deep friendships through LinkedIn and people you Darlington is only a tool it's a tool for conversation it's a tool for building community it's a tool for you know it's it's much more than finding a job.
It's it's building relationships you know.
And if I were to arrive in your neighborhood I would probably reach out and say hey let's go have coffee.
Let's have lunch or something like that or a glass of wine.
[13:39] Would that be awesome I love that. But it's true it's you think about it.
You know I remember going back to the I.T. business against selling large projectors that did video conferencing.
I had a video feed from 3M mounted on the ceilings and a projector like style,
video conferencing and now before there is so much equipment I mean I know the technical detail that goes into that but you look at what we can do now with streaming and video conferencing whether it's a zoom CALL OR WE'RE THREE here on stream yard and the live linked in feed.
It's incredible. Yeah and you're right. And a platform like in life Linked In I've been able to communicate with people around the world that I never in a million years would have been able to reach to And speaking of the business front to me and just to do a branding exercise of a video.
Jim how many tens of thousands if not hundreds of thousands that would have cost you back 20 years ago. Yes. Yeah. It's incredible how far we've come.
[14:34] Yeah. So talking about going forward.
I know you have some strategies in place where you want to take the drunken grape in where you want to go with your activities and you're highlighting some of these wineries in some of these these locations that are amazing.
So talk to us about what is going to take place for Rob in the next three to five years.
What you What's your average Rob take us there.
[15:02] I definitely have three to five years definitely want to have a good command nationally moving internationally into that part of the world into the videographer world I mean right now there's so much even regionally or provincially here in Ontario.
Would you be like a state the state's same same kind of breakdown as far as territory in Ontario a lot.
We have three really prolific wine producing regions most of it around the Great Lakes area.
In fact almost all of it is but it's just so much going on and some amazing wines coming out of there and then of course in Western Canada you get into British Columbia wines of the same kind of grey that you're going to find in places like Oregon.
So there's just so much going on and the impetus even in North America.
The US is what the fourth largest producer of wine in the world.
If you removed California alone as its own country I believe it's still fourth as a producer in the world maybe fifth now but it's just staggering what's available and,
it's an exciting piece of business just because the amount of the stories that go into each winery are just amazing.
[16:06] It's nice it's nice to watch what I love to see.
I used to go to the spring barrel over in Washington central Washington. OK that's cool.
And the diversity in the wineries was night and day.
I mean from mom and pop with a couple of barrels in a garage to multimillion dollar estates.
Yeah. Literally on an expanse of hundreds of acres of land all around them. Oh yeah.
If not thousands. That's insane. Yeah.
And the beauty of it is is you know you could take something and you can create something from you know that came from a seed.
You know it's just the seed of an idea.
[16:46] Growing grapes I used to have,
grapes when I lived in Oregon.
[16:52] You know I had a couple of I don't know probably 100 yards two rows of one hundred yards of grapes mature grapes. That's very cool.
[17:02] And I and I had a lot of friends that got into wine wine or creating wine.
I'm sure there's a better term for it. It's just like you know. But culture. Yeah.
Yeah viticulture and it's it's just it just blows my mind.
I mean it's it's a process and I've had friends that develop you know create beer. In fact my son used to make beer.
[17:31] Yeah. They're brewing is one of those things that's actually if you think about the two business models it's a waiting game if you're setting up a new winery.
But a lot of resources to expand that have an excellent wine and may man that whole myriad of things that go into winery plus you could have two seasons of really bad weather to start and I could just wipe you out.
You just don't know because you mean vintage to vintage weather is very different year to year with a brewery on the other hand you can get up and you can just rent it all warehouse.
A lot of take things like old dairy equipment and convert it for brewing and bag get all coffee roasters to use it to kill learn you know the roast the great and the roast for the grains of the malts.
[18:15] It's the cost entry is a lot lower.
[18:19] And the the ability to turn around a product is much quicker. So that's the advantage you're getting into a brewery.
[18:25] But if you can get into an established winery or take over a winery or develop a concept that really flies,
there is in truth a lot more money and wine and that's it's it's just which business model you want to go and and what's your interests really. But I.
[18:41] Yeah viticulture is a massive amount of work because you have the whole outdoors in the field and agriculture and farming involved as well.
[18:48] Well a lot of wineries buy their grapes and they process their grapes from other that they do that.
That's true. Yeah. So it's it's.
And I was just fascinated by the diversity in what what people were doing and accomplishing.
And there's a ton of I mean the tourism industry alone was just phenomenal. I'm just watching it.
You know all the hotels are booked you know they've got buses riding around.
[19:13] You've got your hours food underground or anything else. Absolutely.
[19:17] And you know I you know having had a little experience in farming I understood you know what it takes to grow grapes and and you know mature the vines and everything that goes along with that.
And it's just it's it's a long process you know whereas Yeah it is.
[19:37] It really is. I mean that you plant your first vines it's going to be three years before the berry sets produce the proper food even for just your your first vintage of wine.
Yeah. And then you're gonna have to bank on the fact there's probably another 15 years on average to start getting true maturity of fruit and it could even be double that depending on the varietals.
Know it's a long process and often you see these wineries some of these great wineries like turn back out of Alsace for instance has been in.
I think there are the 13th generation of the winery being in the family it's got 300 year legacy so far.
Now some of these massive powerhouses I've been around literally that long.
And again it's it's a it's a definitely very costly to start up a winery and move forward with it.
But the potential can be huge if if you if you're right off to the right the right concept the right site the right location. Right. Grapes.
[20:38] That's kind of the way it is with any business. You know it's,
you know it's like you developing video highlighting some of these vineyards and some of the things that you know you have to talk to the right person in order number one,
to get the right product because you know you have to have somebody those willing to work with you and produce the right result that highlights them in the best possible light.
[21:05] And that's true. And usually and usually the market for while the market market for the drunken grape in the videos I've been doing are more on the small to mid-sized scale too. Right.
You think about it the massive wineries they're probably gonna fly in a couple celebrities to do something like Gallo.
Could be a billion dollar winery. But the most wanted man in the world.
Yeah. And even the ones that are doing well and they're into the tens of millions. I mean a lot of cases you're still dealing with the owner directly.
Yeah yeah. Which is also cool because you meet them in the case of when I went down to Henry power math Henry at Pelham family estate winery.
It's three brothers that run it now their family started it or this side of the family started the modern era of the winery.
Something like thirty three years ago the brothers have taken it over but it's neat to sit down with them because,
while the one that I know Daniel's just the amount of energy and enthusiasm he has in always talking to me about just adding to the production facility you can just see raise a passion and joy out of him.
And that's neat to see when you're dealing with people who have actually created it or in this case had a huge hand growing up in it and helping create it for the family for the future.
Yeah absolutely. Because they see this legacy part develop as well.
[22:23] And a lot of these owners and it's fascinating because a lot of these people they do have a passion for it and you have to have a passion for it because there's a huge opportunity.
You know like you said a couple of bad seasons you know drought everything else that goes along with it.
You know it could be it could turn south very quickly. Right. It could. It could go bad.
And if you have the passion for it you'll figure it out you'll figure out a way to deal with it.
There's there's always a way to to make a unique opportunity. You know it's like opportunities are found in challenges right.
That's true. And anytime you anytime you're challenged really hard you know just like the decision to go into wine you know based on what you're your father said you know it's like 80 to 100. That's right.
[23:14] And I was at one point I was always why at one point I'd wondered for a while how that even fit into the picture and if you're right as some some effect now for sure. Yeah.
And particularly from managing projects and having consultants on projects there is a structure that you bring to things such too.
[23:32] Well there's a chain of events that have to take place in order to find some sense of accomplishment or the criteria for success. Right.
You don't know exactly what it is. However you know the steps that are in place and if you have experience with project management is that you can actually initiate those steps and plan for those things to take place.
And like making phone calls and following up and taking video and editing and all of these things that go into the process in.
That that can only come over time and experience you know.
And so now where you are right now is is a unique place which I think is ripe for opportunity.
If I can use the grape analogy like purity to to,
plant that seed and make sure that you know you're developing these smaller wineries highlighting the industry and bring you something you know if you go into the tourism bureaus and you look at some of the things that they're doing,
highlighting because that's tourism dollars and that's huge.
And so I could see you very easily sliding into that space and.
[24:48] Matter in the face of start to look at quite extensively. I mean the thing for video is it took a while to build.
I mean we really just built the sellable car and the Center for events events is different because eventing just be called up and you can go in and you get the salt to where you can present can be a tasting for 50 people a hundred two hundred.
You just scale it the amount of members you need that are trained in the wine world and the wine and beer world.
Now you execute it there. You often shoot branding videos for them as well. That's a nice little give back.
But the scale on the sense of the video side,
it's a process to build and develop as well and you're right there's sorts of things you learn along the way you realize how long it takes a good editor to really clean things up in the end if you want it on a professional grade.
So a lot of factors to consider in that development as well.
But it certainly certainly the background from IBM and having a hand in the project management aspects directly.
Helps with that just helps with the project planning itself. You know you first get a prototype and then you have to find the proper site and then you realize OK.
That's the first prototype we got to go and launch a second or third prototype in a brewery prototype as well.
And you have to build the car before you can sell it and it's like engineering and design.
[26:04] Yeah. Yeah. Well it's fascinating because after you've shot a few videos and you understand you know location light you know.
[26:14] Time of day there's a billion factors. And then you then you realize OK I can see how a movie can cost a million dollars to make out.
[26:23] Well now you see the amount of work that goes into a two two and a half minute video if you want to get it up professionally I know the last one me.
We air for Henry of calm family estate winery.
There's probably a 50 hours just in the back end to edit it from the actual filming that we took on site.
Put the time to get down there the time to plan it. And it's helpful having having knowledge in the field.
This isn't something you could just jump into and when you have the product knowledge and I hear that the product knowledge to some competent level to do it plus the ability to go on camera and a lot of people,
it's just whether it's my friend Kurt Murch daddy has a great comedy goes follow your superpowers.
Know I believe one of mine is to being able to present live and really express it with passion and further and a bit of joy and sometimes a little bit of humor and making it personable and not,
to the effect of like you're sitting in an actual university lecture because that's the last thing everybody thinks of you think of that movie Ferris Bueller's Day Off in the classroom is Bueller Bueller Cameron Gellar,
Bueller know I just.
Don't you want to go the opposite of that.
[27:34] Yeah well now now you're a Somali and a pirate.
So you can go out doing a ship of the pirate broadcasts. It's fantastic.
It's it's brilliant. And I love the fact that you're here.
[27:48] I appreciate you and in all of the people Jennifer archived you know can we mention Jen waltzes in here Marine.
[28:05] Gerry I mean there's there's a ton of people that are joining us and and.
[28:11] I know it's a small quaint community we have here.
However the ability and the opportunity to do what we're doing digitally.
Rob is going to take us Miles. We're on the trail. We're on the tip of the iceberg I believe.
And if we just keep creating keep innovating keep doing things that are helping others.
It always seems to return in in spades. So it's like it grows. It just grows.
It's like a it's like planting that seed. You know it takes some time.
You know it's like the vine grows and it matures and it develops and we all started zero.
So if you're thinking about starting something and you want to test it out talk to people that are actually doing it identify what it is that needs to be done.
And what I always talk about is find the grout between the bricks that hold up hold it together,
because if you go if you find your curiosity you're kind of observant you could kind of discover things that are missing between,
you know what is what exists today and what you could potentially help out with in the future.
[29:25] And if your help your work is always good it goes back to that one word I always think of can kangaroo and see it's got to be congruent with you. Yeah.
You know if your passion is music Why are you in a lab somewhere working or if you're passionate sport.
I'll be out there in some aspect of sports whether you're an athlete if you too can go as far to become a pro athlete get into the organizational aspect get to the broadcast booth whatever it may follow where your strengths sit.
I mean that's one thing we're always preached to do is is to try to strengthen your weaknesses and to find balance but we're not really balanced as human beings.
You've got to run what you've got to run with where you have your utmost talent.
[30:11] Well I appreciate the fact that you're here in the pirate broadcast is Monday through Friday at 7 a.m. Arizona time.
Wherever you happen to be. We don't have daylight savings time here.
[30:22] Just like I'll let you figure it out the math.
It's so. And also we can be found on YouTube.
Follow my subscribe to my YouTube channel. It's a great place that I expected for that to grow as well and expand.
I just launched a podcast and it's on Facebook Live.
So if if you find it here on LinkedIn and you want to go elsewhere you can.
I love LinkedIn LinkedIn is my jam and I just love connecting with people on LinkedIn like Rob and so Rob. Thank you so much for being here today and sharing your gifts and your ministry.
[31:01] You know I think I'm very very humbled and very honored to be here. I think you've got something great going on here.
The pirate broadcasts Rossi do a great job with the show. Thank you very much and thank you to all those that tuned in.
Yeah. It is time and time is the most precious asset.
[31:15] Thank you. And as I always say you know kindness is cool.
Smiles are free and you enjoy the day. Have a great day everyone.