With this post we introduce Lauren Brunhofer, who is working for the next little while with our PR whiz Leslie Kroeger. As you will read, her first days here have brought a few surprises. Being asked to write a guest post for our blog was yet another.
As a college student at Hobart & William Smith Colleges, I had originally viewed the local wineries as a source of recreational activity. Renting a bus, mapping out the best wineries (Fox Run Vineyards to be number one, of course), and enjoying the company of my friends while tasting the many varieties of wines: a day trip like that was always a welcome break from academics. Therefore, I thought accepting this internship would be a great opportunity. I would be able to put to use my previous experience in public relations while learning what goes on behind the scenes at a local vineyard.
Considering that I almost always choose wine over beer and liquor, I felt fairly comfortable arriving at the winery on my first day. I knew the difference between a Chardonnay and a Riesling, so how hard could this be? Little did I know that my wine world was about to be rocked. I saw Chardonnay, Chardonnay Reserve, Riesling Dry, Riesling Semi-Dry, Riesling Reserve, to name only a few of the white wines. What did I get myself into? I don’t know anything about wine! I am a college student on a budget. When I think of wine, I usually think of a box.
As my nerves slowly calmed, I became less intimidated and more inspired. How many college students can say that they've spent a significant amount of time in a winery learning about the wine rather than consuming it in mass quantities? I'd like to think very few. It was then that I realized, as much as I had a huge learning curve ahead of me in order to publicize Fox Run Vineyards efficiently and successfully, I truly wanted to be here.
In order to ensure that fans of Fox Run are kept informed about our wines, we have to make sure that all of our social media are constantly updated. It was my job one day to venture up to the winery to obtain some of what I thought was general information about a few of the wines. I introduced myself as the new public relations intern to our winemakers, and hoped to just jot down the statistics we needed. To my surprise, they just laughed at me. I thought to myself, "What's so funny?” But before I could even get the words out, they began to explain that it had nothing to do with me and everything to do with how much time it would actually take to report that information. Since they didn't want me to return back to the office empty handed, they kindly invited me to observe their wine tasting. My scant knowledge about wine was again put to shame when they proceeded to give me a crash course in Wine Tasting 101. Although a lot of it went over my head, I learned about how to smell the different layers in the wine and how to talk about them.
I had absolutely no idea that I could learn so much in such a short amount of time. As I continue my time here at Fox Run, I plan to expand my wine horizon as much as possible. With such a knowledgeable group of people surrounding me, I cannot imagine this task will be very hard.