Wine for Haiti in the Media

Wine for Haiti is going strong. The wine community has generously donated items worth $60,000, and Australia’s Booze Monkey has nearly matched that effort down under. Now we need bidders, and happily, Wine for Haiti has also grabbed the attention of national and international media, from the Indianapolis Star to the New York Times and Voice of America News. The wine media is noticing, too, with Decanter and Wine Library TV plugging the effort.

This media attention is essential to ensure Wine for Haiti raises the maximum dollars possible for Haitian relief efforts. Below are the stories that have run to-date. If you know of others, please post a comment so we can spread the word. And if you’re a reporter interested in this story, please contact publisher David Honig.

Wine Auction to Benefit Haiti, Napa Valley Register, January 29, 2010:

David Honig, publisher of Palate Press: The Online Wine Magazine, has organized a Wine for Haiti auction to raise money for the American Red Cross Haiti Relief project. “The most impressive part of the story is the amazing generosity of the wine world, from individuals pulling bottles from cellars to wineries, many in Napa and Sonoma, contributing magnificent, one-of-a-kind, bottles.”

He added, “The effort has also gone international, with a partner site in Australia, where the Aussies are set on raising more money than their American counterparts.” 

Wine community rallies to help Haiti, by James Lawrence, Decanter, January 27, 2010:

The international wine community has been working together to help the victims of the Haiti earthquake tragedy.

Wine experts Jancis Robinson MW, Matthew Jukes and Gary Vaynerchuk have been active in using social media to promote the Wines for Haiti fund-raising project, started by US wine network, Palate Press.

The campaign has drawn in support from social networking sites across the globe to encourage people to donate something special from their cellar to be auctioned online.

Australian social networking site Booze Monkey is hoping to raise $100,000 by asking for wine donations.

Booze Monkey CEO Marc Jardine said: ‘I don’t care if it’s a bottle of Blue Nun or a case of Grange, if you can spare some wine to help save a life, we want to hear from you.’ The international wine community has been working together to help the victims of the Haiti earthquake tragedy.

Winemakers Open Cellars to Help Haiti Quake Victims, by Gary Thomas, Voice of America News, January 27, 2010:

The devastation of the Haiti earthquake has prompted people around the world to offer help to the victims of the disaster.  Relief funds have been raised through time-honored ways, like a celebrity telethon, and new methods such as text messaging donations via cell phone.

The heartrending pictures beamed around the world from Haiti caused thousands of people to open their purses and wallets to contribute to disaster relief.  In the United States and Australia people have opened their cellars – wine cellars, that is.

Winemakers in the U.S. and Australia are contributing bottles of some of their finest wines to a special online wine auction to raise money for quake victims.

The auction, dubbed Wine for Haiti, is the brainchild of David Honig, an attorney and publisher of the online wine magazine Palate Press.  A former resident of Miami, he lived through Hurricane Andrew in 1992 and has many Haitian friends.  He says the response from the winemaking community has been astounding.

On the other side of the world, a sister website to Palate Press in Australia is doing the same thing.  For Marc Jardine of – a website linking wine consumers and winemakers – the Haiti earthquake brought back unsettling memories.  He lived through the massive 1995 earthquake in Kobe, Japan.

Jardine and Honig are engaged in a little friendly cross-global competition to see who can raise the most money for Haiti.  Collectively they look to raise at least $100,000, but harbor hopes they can exceed that.  If they can raise that kind of money, then it can truly be said that wine has the ability to ease pain and soothe suffering – even indirectly.

New York Times, By Florence Fabricant:

Palate Press, an online wine publication, is collecting donated wines from individuals and wineries to sell in its online auction. All sales will benefit the Red Cross:

Indianapolis Star, By Jason Thomas and Barb Berggoetz

Hoosiers are finding creative ways to help Haitians

David Honig, an Indianapolis attorney and publisher of online wine magazine “Palate Press,” has launched “Wine for Haiti.” It’s an online fine wine auction, with all proceeds going to the American Red Cross.

Care for a 1968 bottle of rioja from Spain? How about rubbing elbows with winemakers at an annual celebration in California? Just click and name your price.

“I have been absolutely overwhelmed by the generosity of the wine community,” said Honig, 49, Carmel, who opened an e-mail Monday morning from a California winery wanting to donate four cases.

The project has gained momentum worldwide. An Australian wine blog — — started its own auction after learning of Honig’s effort. Together, they hope to raise $100,000.

Democrat and Chronicle, Rochester, New York, by Laura Nichols:

Finger Lakes wineries are among contributors to an online Wine for Haiti fundraiser.

Lot 33 is a magnum of Hunt Country Vineyards’ Vidal Blanc ice wine, retail value $150.

Zugibe Vineyards donated a case of its 2007 Riesling, which the winery called “one of our best” in a Facebook posting. The retail value is $195; minimum bid $100, and bidding started today. Its lot number is 31. “We are just hoping that the auction can bring in as much $$$ as possible!” the winery’s Facebook posting says.

The event is being organized by Palate Press, an online wine magazine, and “Brother, can you spare a bottle?“, a blog that says it’s “a place for Wine Bloggers, Wine Twitters, wine makers, drinkers, collectors, and fans to coordinate charitable giving.” Bidding is taking place on Palate Press’ Web site. Individuals as well as wineries are donating wine, books, art and other wine-related items.