Tuesday, September 18, 2012


Evan Dawson of the New York Cork Report won the Roederer Award for Best International Book in London yesterday for his story about the Finger Lakes, SUMMER IN A GLASS. Evan is a news anchor in Rochester, NY, as well as the Managing Editor of The New York Cork Report. His television station in Rochester just produced a documentary based on the book.

I knew we had something special when I first read the rough draft of Evan's book. It was stellar from the get go. Every once in a while you get a special project. Earlier in my career is was a few things like The American West with Dee Brown, then books with Stephen Hawking, Strange Fruit by David Margolick of Vanity Fair, and Jim Meehan of PDT among many others. But Evan's book was special to me in that it was about something near and dear to my heart....east coast winemaking.

Founded in 1776, Champagne Louis Roederer continues as one of the very rare Champagne houses to remain firmly in the hands of the family. For two centuries, six successive generations have been responsible for building a reputation for quality and continuity. Today, Frédéric Rouzaud has succeeded his father Jean-Claude at the head of the company, securing the future of Champagne Louis Roederer as an independent family House.

The Louis Roederer Awards are international awards for the best wine writing in the world. For a wine writer this is the ultimate prize. That Evan has accomplished this so young is an incredible accolade. It is a testament to his integrity, his honesty, and his determination....and his love of wine.

I was disappointed that the Beard Awards passed over this book, but the Roederer is a HUGE exclamation point, and a nod by the international wine community, that this was a great book, that Evan is a great author, and that east coast wine belongs in the greater global wine conversation. I could not be more proud than to be associated with such a project.

The quotes we got from established wine writers were phenomenal, and were the first clue that my hunches about the book were right. The reviews were equally impressive and numerous!

But the real congrats goes to Evan Dawson. He was a consummate professional throughout the publishing process. He was great during the writing, editing, and production of the book. But that's just half the publishing process. The second half is selling the book. Getting it into the public's hands. And Evan did it with style and hard work. And his beautiful and talented wife, Morgan, was a pro and incredible support to him throughout. She was a friend, confidant, and trooper throughout the process for Evan. They are a team.

I cannot congratulate them both loud enough! Now, safe trip back from London and the awards....go play with Rhys, and start working on another book.