Top American Winemakers to Collaborate on Limited Edition Bottles from Abroad

By Lawrence Marcus Posted May 30, 2013
2012 Winemaker of the Year Aaron Pott. <br/> Photo courtesy of Wine for the World.

2012 Winemaker of the Year Aaron Pott.
Photo courtesy of Wine for the World.

Some of the country's top wine talents, including F&W Winemakers of the Year 2012 Helen Keplinger and Aaron Pott, are hoping to crowdfund a genius new project with idealistic goals. If it can secure $5,000 more in Indigogo pledges by tomorrow, Wine for the World will have raised $25,000 to send its first convoy of American winemakers to collaborate with promising, yet underrepresented vintners abroad. The result will be limited-edition bottlings that will be sent back to the U.S. to retail for $18-$25. Their inaugural stop is South Africa, where wine accounts for a significant chunk of the gross domestic product but has just 1 percent of the import market share in America.

Mastermind Mika Bulmash, an international development specialist who most recently managed projects for USAID took inspiration from a program that used government money to bolster the wine industry in Moldova. She realized that she could start an enterprise that would support developing economies by helping them sell their wines in the U.S.  "I'd never quite reconciled my passion for wine with my aim to do good in the world," she says, "so I'd been sitting on how to combine the two for a while."

Wine for the World is working with importers and distributors to get the wines to the U.S., but Bulmash is also excited about giving emerging regions a marketing jolt. The bottles will be co-branded with both winemakers' names, and Bulmash believes that this will entice American consumers. To support the campaign, visit Indiegogo to contribute as little as $5.

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