The Booze Bin

La Cité du Vin – An interactive wine museum like no other


la cite du vin

During my travels around the storied Bordeaux wine region last week, I had the opportunity to visit La Cité du Vin, a new wine museum that opened last year in the beautiful city of Bordeaux. It impressed me so much,  I spent almost three hours there, but I could have easily spent another three. There is fascinating information for wine aficionados, novices, experts, non-drinkers, and even children to experience via brilliant technology and digital works of art. The museum incorporates multiple cutting edge interactive exhibits that engages multilingual visitors, seamlessly teaching everything there is to know about wine. La Cité du Vin focus is not only French wines but highlights some of the most important wine producing countries in the world and their storied wine regions. The exhibits achieve this through a combination of interactive maps, 3D photos, interviews of famous winemakers and digital books that explain each regions’ terroir, grape varieties, wine styles and other cultural aspects.dining experience 2

The visual and audio aspects of the museum captivate visitors in an array of intriguing installations. There are special spaces where one can sit at a dining table to learn about wine pairings and etiquette while looking at a hologram of a famous chef or master of wine sitting across from them. The museum also has a fantastic area showcasing the aromas, textures, colors, etc. that are found in wines. In this section, you truly get a lesson


2024 Olympics: A Sustainable Solution

Kenny and a friend take a picture with the only visible sign of 2012 Summer Olympics.

It’ll be a heated summer in Paris and Los Angeles, as both cities vie for the 2024 Olympic and Paralympic Games. Ahead of the announcement on September 14, even the number of social media followers are creating controversy.

This is exactly what the International Olympic Committee (IOC) would like, two competing cities driving online engagement, all in the spirit of the Olympic Movement. This healthy competition will push the planning and bid committees to spread positivity about the Olympics around the world.

In the end, both cities might be declared winners. There are rumors that the IOC will name one city the winner of the 2024 Games and the runner-up as the host of the 2028 Games. This is a good idea, as both cities are top-notch finalists.

However, the IOC’s plan highlights a deeper issue: the unsustainability of selecting different host countries for each Olympic Games.

High building costs, paired with limited post-Games usage are a very large barrier for potential host countries. Many countries are passing on hosting the games – which ultimately hurts the Olympic brand.


A look to the past

In December 2014, I had the opportunity to tour London’s Olympic Park. Since…

PR Industry Trends

Could Marketing Save the Fast-Casual Industry?



The past few years have been kind to the fast-casual dining segment. In fact, fast-casual dining was crowned the strongest growing segment across the foodservice industry, increasing $3.4 billion globally from 2014 to 2015.

Though recent studies have shown this wave of popularity might not be here to stay. New research from AlixPartners, shows that frequent customers of fast-casual restaurants (at least two visits a week) plan to cut back their visits by 13% in the next 12 months. In the wake of this significant slowdown, fast-casual executives are looking for answers.

According to the research, 44% of frequent consumers surveyed accredited the reason for less visits is due to an increased effort to eat healthier. With the surge of ready-to-eat foods, meal kit services, and online grocery shopping, dining at home options have become more appealing, giving the fast-casual sector stiff competition. Here’s a look at how 3 popular fast-casual brands leverage marketing tactics to reach consumers, promote healthy offerings and encourage visits.

Crisis Management

Padilla Crisis Experts Analyze the United Airlines Fiasco

Bob McNaney talks with KMSP-TV (FOX, Twin Cities)

United Airlines. When you hear those two words together what do you think? If you think of the news headlines when Chicago airport security officials forcefully dragged a man off the plane you would be in line with the rest of the world. The incident was captured on video by passengers and spread like wildfire on social media. The United brand is significantly damaged. It will be a long road ahead for United Airlines as the company works to rebuild its reputation. By the way, each and every “small” issue the airline faces will now be magnified by the media and passengers.

As crisis and reputation management professionals, we have been following the storyline and watching as the issue unfolds on national and international media. As the crisis continues to make headlines, keep in mind the corporate protocols conflict with the court of public opinion.

United Airlines has standard protocols and procedures it encourages its employees to follow when issues arise. But one element not taken into consideration in corporate policies is the human element. The “common sense” factor was clearly not applied here. The United mindset was that the plane had to depart. Airlines have policies and procedures as to…

The Booze Bin

What Booze Marketers Should Know About the Mindfulness Movement

Image Credit: SomeEcards

When in 2012 one of UVA’s most illustrious donors, Paul Tudor Jones, announced a $12 million gift to establish a Contemplative Sciences Center to foster “modern applications of contemplative thought,” people thought he was bonkers. Today, as the mindfulness movement seeps into more and more touchpoints in our lives, we’re realizing that Paul was not bonkers – he was actually five years ahead of the rest of us.

Since 2012, Google searches for “yoga” increased 40%, searches for “meditation” grew 51% and searches for “purpose” shot up 56% (Google Trends). Type in “mindfulness” on Pinterest and you’ll see hundreds of pages of infographics, videos and inspirational quotes to help you eat better, sleep better, ease stress and live with intention.

Ironically, the more time we spend texting, tweeting and snapchatting with each other, the more we find ourselves yearning to make meaningful connections with people who share our values. But our society-wide addition to our smartphones makes it feel impossible to just turn the damned things off and interact with our friends. Instead, we turn to novel, organized gatherings of people with shared interests –…