In July at the #wbc14, I was invited to hang with the cool kids at a special dinner in Solvang to celebrate the Rodney Strong Vineyard Silver Anniversary. Several months later, I was invited to attend the Rodney Strong Silver Anniversary and James Beard Chef’s Tour Dinner celebrating 25 years of the Klein family owning the vineyard.
Top chefs in Austin, Healdsburg, Miami and New York, hosted dinners that we were able to watch live on the #rsv25 channel. There were also nine bloggers who are also fantastic home cooks that hosted mouthwatering dinners in different markets. And then there were a few like me who don’t cook but were lucky enough to have received the wines so I could taste along. All of the dinners benefitted the James Beard Foundation, echoing the family’s continuing commitment to give back to the community.
Owner Tom Klein talked about how his goal was to create world-class wines that captured the essence of Sonoma. In the 25 years under Klein’s ownership and direction, the winery has expanded, the number of wines offered has increased, the practices have became sustainable and the winery was named American Winery of the Year by the Wine Enthusiast in 2013.
I’ve always said Rodney Strong was one of the top wineries that really understood the power of digital and social media. They are front and center in raising the bar, making bloggers feel appreciated and understanding that if they get the right people in the room, they can and will out-trend any other wine event.
We tasted through six wines and there was a sense of fun to the entire evening. The people at the dinners had fun. The people on social media had fun. The bloggers like me who were lucky enough to be included had fun.
We had six spectacular wines:
- 2013 Rodney Strong Charlotte’s Home Sauvignon Blanc
- 2012 Rodney Strong Chalk Hill Chardonnay
- 2012 Rodney Strong Russian River Pinot Noir
- 2012 Rodney Strong Symmetry, Alexander Valley
- 2010 Brother’s Cabernet, Alexander Valley
- 2008 Rodney Strong “A True Gentleman’s Port (named after Tom’s brother who passed away in 2003
According to Vintank, the undisputed leader in providing social intelligence for wineries, the results were impressive:
- #RSV25 Trended #1 on Twitter, ahead of an HBO show.
- When the event began, there was a social post every 12 seconds. Near the end of the evening, social posts were coming in every 6.7 seconds
- 3,104 posts tagged with #RSV25. Nearly 700 people tuned into RSV25.com for the broadcast
- Rodney Strong saw more than a 27% rise in its social media footprint.
For more information on the event, check out rsv25.com.
Or search #rsv25 for a glimpse of the fun. Cheers to the Klein family, the Rodney Strong Vineyards staff and everyone involved in showing how much fun silver anniversaries can be.