Charles is among my favorite people and thinkers in Long Island Wine Country. He's always great for an insightful, frank quote.
I particularly like these comments...especially because they consider the customers' side of things too.
"In my opinion this is more about personal liberty and freedom. As adults we do not need anyone in a free society to tell us how we should behave. When you can purchase a weapon on the Web it is silly that you cannot purchase a bottle of wine in the same manner.
The argument about teenagers is bogus as we all know. Jim Trezise (of the New York Wine & Grape Foundation) gave me a reference to a study by the FTC that dealt with that definitively.
In our case, one can properly ask what would we get out of it since we are selling all of our production anyway. In the near term, not much new business, however we want to be responsive to our customers. For instance, when someone who visited us from Connecticut wants to reorder our wine we want to be able to resupply that wine and not turn away repeat business. As we all know much of what we do is to earn the repeat business and so it hurts when you cannot be responsive because the law has been hijacked to the benefit of the liquor lobby.
In the long term, and we have just planted 12 acres, we want to expand our business as our children work here and they are as passionate about wine as we are. And in order to properly support them, we need to grow. One aspect of growth is to tap into our large base of out of state visitors who have been trying to have us ship wine to them. Also we will more aggressively grow our wine Club. Bottom line it is good for all small wineries since they have no chance to have the distributors sell their product."
-- Charles Massoud, co-owner and winemaker, Paumanok Vineyards