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May 15, 2014 | 10:16 AM

Last week, we sent off the June issue of Wine Business Monthly to the printer. Look for it in your mailbox in the next couple weeks, or click here to subscribe. See the Month in Review below for a preview of the June issue.

Getting Ready for Crush

There are similarities between making a magazine and making wine. Both take passion, both take commitment, both involve myriad behind-the-scenes details and a frenzy of last-minute activity. Neither are quite as glamorous as they’re sometimes made out to be. Both involve deadlines, and that can be nerve-wracking. But it doesn’t have to be that way. As I’m fond of saying, deadline is your friend because it makes things happen.

After the frenzy of a magazine deadline, we often pause to reflect on what went right and what didn’t, convening a “post-mortem” meeting to help things run more smoothly the next time. While the cycles of winemaking are often unpredictable due to the vagaries of Mother Nature, getting organized ahead of crush is equally, if not even more, beneficial in the winery. All of this is to say that there’s a nice article in this issue discussing these post-mortems and getting ready for harvest. This is a harvest prep issue. And now, I’ll get off the soapbox.

Never mind…I can’t do it because there are some must-read articles in this issue. One I particularly like is about a new optical sorter and its effect on wine quality. We’ve been hearing a lot about optical sorters lately, and Wine Business Monthly has reported on their emergence during the past couple of years. The article in this issue, though, is different than any that’s been published to date, anywhere, because it contains actual data on how optical sorting affects wine quality. Amazing, right? Yes, actual data. How an optical sorter affects wine quality can, in fact, be objectively measured, if one sets up a solid trial and sends the juice out to a state-of-the-art lab for analysis—even if the interpretation of these objective measurements is totally subjective. Somebody has finally done it. Read all about it in this issue of Wine Business Monthly.

Have you visited lately? If so, you may have noticed a redesign. The new homepage features a responsive design for tablets and smartphones and is updated throughout the day. There were a number of reasons for the redesign, among them a desire to make the site responsive for mobile phone and tablet users. Roughly 20 percent of our online traffic now comes through mobile devices, and that number continues to grow. The numbers are similar for winery websites too, which is why some wineries will want to consider the responsive design option. Responsive design aims to provide an optimized mobile experience with fluid design and images that will stretch or shrink based on the screen’s size, but it comes with some trade-offs. Check out the article in our Technology & Business section to learn more.

Here’s to a smooth and stress-free crush. Be prepared. And remember, deadline is your friend.

Cyril Penn – Editor

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