The vintner’s art may seem shrouded in mystery to most people, and most wine makers are happy to maintain the status quo, but Peter Cap, the man behind Manor Estate Winery in McLaren Vale, has been sharing his secrets. It’s not only his circle of friends and associates who have been privy to them – instead, the outgoing Mr Cap has gone public with a TV-turned-YouTube series that exposes the wine secrets everybody wants to know.
“People are genuinely interested in the technical aspects of the world of wine,” says Peter. “They want to know what goes into a good vintage and they want to understand the art of being a wine connoisseur. As a result, Manor Estate chose to offer some of this information free of charge to anyone who cares to be in the know.”
2020’s Challenges Part of the Initiative
Before 2020’s challenges hit, Peter and daughter Sharleen had been far too busy to think of anything beyond their drive to capture the US wine-fanciers market for Manor Estate. “It was a family effort to build a reputation for Manor Estate in the US starting with Manhattan’s smartest venues,” Peter explains. “There was phenomenal progress, especially after the wines gained recognition from Wine Australia as a promising export for the US market. It was incredibly frustrating having to scale back on operations after such a promising start.”
Staying in touch with US clients and capturing the Australian audience that had not previously formed part of their strategic drive became “Plan B” for the family, and now another daughter of the family, Chantelle, would take the driver’s seat. As a media expert, she directed her energy into the production of the Wine Secrets TV series. “It was a way to stay in touch with clients around the world as well as gaining media exposure at home in Australia,” says Peter. “The winery had a fan base at home, but with so much competition from bigger wine producers, it had seemed a difficult market for expansion.”
The series comprises of bite-sized chunks of information that are easy to digest and remember. “Viewers don’t want to be overloaded with information, some of which is useful and actionable, and some of which is not,” says Peter, “so the series keeps each episode short and to-the-point. Apart from bringing Manor Estate public attention, it also provided viewers with information they wanted. It’s the kind of knowledge that Manor Estate shares during its Secret Wine Garden and Cellar Door wine-tasting events – just with a bigger audience.”
Manor Estates admits to following inspiration from one of its fans – wine and internet entrepreneur Gary Vaynerchuk. The international celebrity started his career with the family wine shop, and had begun promoting its products with YouTube videos featuring wine tasting and wine talk. It was the start of an inspiring career. After impressing Vaynerchuk with the quality of its wines in the USA, Manor Estate decided to follow suit, but this time, the production would be from the winemaker’s, rather than the wine shop’s, perspective.
“Manor Estate is promoted in the series, but the information shared is applicable to wines across the board,” explains Peter. “In making the series, the information targeted knowledge and advice that’s applicable to the enjoyment of wine from any estate in the world. People are thirsty for knowledge to enhance their experience of the world of wine. They would like to know how to judge and describe a wine, how to serve it, what foods to pair with it, and of course, they want to know about what goes into making great wine.”
Dual-Purpose, Single Solution
Introducing its wines to the broader Australian public and maintaining contact with clients and wine-fanciers half a world away may seem like two separate goals for Manor Estate to work towards, but the Wine Secrets documentary series has contributed in both areas. `It’s a simple yet elegant solution that has helped Manor Estate to gain new supporters and simultaneously keep a form of contact with existing ones despite lockdowns, travel bans and all the inconveniences of 2020. Meanwhile, the public has access to information and a simple way to demystify the complex-seeming “insider” information” that lies behind the wines they already enjoy.
For more information visit the Manor Estate Wines McLaren Vale website or call their team of experts on (08) 8383 7300.