Friday, February 1, 2013

Manitoba's version of Natalie MacLean - RedtoBrown News Interview Canada's Top Wine Writer

In the amateur blogging coup of the decade, RedtoBrown Wine News managed to secure an exclusive interview with Manitoba’s famous wine writer Doris MacDay following a chance meeting* at last month's Las Vegas Blog/Website Monetisation Maximisation Conference.

After years of hard work, Doris MacDay has become one of the pre-eminent North American wine writers, on a par with Ontario’s Natalie MacLean and Maryland’s Robert Parker jr. Doris was kind enough to speak to a representative of R2B at the conference afterparty.

A rare image from 1997 of Ms MacDay, taken from her original Netscape-hosted website 
R2B: “Doris, thanks for your time, it is a pleasure to finally meet you, given all of the unattributed R2B wine reviews we have seen posted on the website.”
Doris: “My pleasure!, I scan your blog and hundreds of other amateur and professional wine websites with interest, and am happy to have a chat!”

R2B: "You are one of the most revered and recognised wine writers in the southern suburbs of Winnipeg, and your website – is one of the fastest growing subscription wine websites in Manitoba. How do you find the time to come to events like this on top of writing those numerous one sentence reviews padded by unattributed secondary reviews?”
Doris: "That’s a great question, and how kind of you to mention my global reach. In short, I am very good at managing my time. On top of managing my website, I bake, I cook, I garden, I taste numerous bottles of wine from producers who are loyal ‘Plankton Premium’ subscribers to my site: there is ‘just’ enough time in the day to do all the things I need to. I also have dedicated staff that help and support me. They assist me in the sometimes arduous task of finding an even mix of reviews to copy and link, as well as all the other miscellaneous administrative tasks required to run my website."

R2B: "Out of interest, what do these miscellaneous admin tasks consist of?"
Doris: "Oh, plenty of random things! Receiving and registering wine samples, checking them off with the ‘Plankton Premium’ membership lists, disposing of wines from wineries who have refused to subscribe to my site, ensuring my research staff are meeting their review search quotas. Lots of things."
One of the many internet research centres spread accross North America:
Another industry-leading method that makes the site pre-eminent in Southern Winnipeg.

R2B:" On your website you proclaim to be the ‘Greatest Wine Writer in the Universe’. Who bestowed you with this amazing honour?"
Doris: "I will always cherish that award - it is giving me chills just thinking about it. It was the North Carolina Chenin-Blanc Appreciation Academy who awarded me the honour 13 years ago, and only 11 years ago awarded me the same honour for a second time. It remains one of my proudest achievements, especially given how much respect I have for that Academy. Wow."

R2B: "What advice would you give to budding wine writers interested in adopting your one sentence wine review methods?"
Doris: "The first thing I would say is research, research, research methods of padding out your review. When you are writing so many reviews you cannot be creating new, descriptive and vivid content every time. It can be a surprisingly exhaustive process to pen a 15 word review. Secondly, keep it general. Finally, ensure your researchers can link to some really good reviews from other wine writers that add credibility to your one sentence review – unattributed of course."

R2B: "Why the insistence of the linked reviews being unattributed? Isn’t it beholden of you to attribute the work of others....?"
Doris: "Hang on – you’re not one of those pesky Palette Wine Presser investigative journalists that have recently been hassling and harassing Canadian wine writers are you? I am sick of your snooping and tomfoolery!!! ……I am assuming your promise to sign up to my Plankton Premium subscription was a lie as well...... This interview is over! (Doris stormed off towards the drinks table and the interview was ended)."

Recent video footage of Doris MacDay
 debriefing the Manitoba Wine Appreciation Society
after her trip to the Chicago Wine awards- LINK
*RedtoBrown Wine Review did not pay Ms MacDay for the interview and are not paid members of
** Any ambitious wineries seeking global/Universal exposure can send free wine samples to RedtoBrown Wine Review. Please contact the RedtoBrown Revenue Maximisation Section( . Links to previoulsy published reviews of the wine would be appreciated. 

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