Decanter’s annual “Powerful” list is based not so much on power, clout, or the ability to move markets, but on a snobbish gaze at a small self-indulgent world that is increasingly irrelevant to the vast majority of the globe’s wine drinkers.
Indeed, the wine industry’s obsession with the navel-gazing worship of sacred grapes blessed by the gods since 1855 is one key reason wine remains a self-marginalized beverage.
Small wonder that so many people who have a real life choose to punt on haut vin’s rituals and mumbo-jumbo and order a vodka or an IPA instead.
The smattering of truly powerful in Decanter’s list — those with the clout to move markets — are buried amid all too many high-profile, but irrelevant, personalities whose presence is due more to the fact that they are all part of “The Club” rather than actual power. And a fair number of the names on the list seem there as part of the magazine’s way to suck up to those it needs to curry favor with.
The people on this list are highly learned, accomplished and clearly exercise an extraordinary power, but not all of them have the ability to change tastes and move markets as well as Bronco’s Fred Franzia, The Wine Group’s David Kent or Sutter Home’s Bob Trinchero.
It’s hard to see true global power when you’re staring down your nose through disdain-colored glasses.
Decanter List of 2011’s “Most Powerful”
|Don||St Pierre Jr|