REB 009: The Wine Business with Matt Cimino

Matt Cimino is the founder of Great Shoals Winery, located in Mount Vernon, Maryland.  He also operates a tasting room at Heyser Farms in Silver Spring, Maryland.  Great Shoals has been around for four years.  Matt started out by converting his father’s barn into a winery.  The majority of fruit used in his wines are sourced locally in Maryland.

We apologize for the extra noise in this podcast.  The interview was conducted in a room with refrigerators.

In this episode Brandon and Matt discuss:

  • The difference between hard cider and wine
  • You can patent an apple!
  • The importance of building relationships to reduce risk when sourcing products
  • The reality of randomness of publics tastes when creating new products
  • The importance of scale and the struggle to achieve it
  • Wineries in Maryland vs. wineries in Virginia*
  • Working on sweat equity (but still paying taxes)
  • Marketing methods to find new and repeat customers
  • How to establish a successful wholesale relationship
  • Creating new products
  • Dealing with having too many products

 *Note: There are approximately 250 wineries in Virginia.  This was quoted incorrectly in the interview.

Links to Tools and Resources mentioned in this Episode:

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