If you don’t like the Fucking Catalina Wine Mixer — you’re fucked

on 05/10/15 at 5:55 pm

Booze News

The_Rape_of_the_Sabine_WomenIn the 2007 Will Ferrell comedy “Step Brothers” there was a scene depicting a business event called the Catalina Wine Mixer. The movie nailed the absurdity of people deep inside a corporate culture giving a silly marketing event religious status. Seeing that there was going to be a real Catalina Wine Mixer was a mix of excitement and dread. Would they just take the $$ (okay, I had a press pass, but …) from us and present a bare bones event? Would it be populated with d-bags who would assault you with movie quotes, or nerds who couldn’t turn off their Step Bros love? More importantly — would I be one of those nerds?

It would seem that the publication Elite Daily had already decided it would be Nerds-for-days, and also judged large segments of the population who dare to brighten up their lives with quotes from their favorite movies. How dare they! They should be riffing off Lenny Bruce and creating their own brand new comedy in their cubicle.

The Vice Reporter made it there, and seemed disappointed a mass event on the scale of the Rape of Sabine Woman didn’t take place so she could be sure of her assessment of the ilk who went.

She must not have talked to the sweet couple who planned to marry at a Comicon Convention — I mean the girl had a Uke strapped to her back. Can you get any more Vice than that (or is the indy girls playing Ukes trend soooooo over for Vice Squad).

c'mon VICE, they look nice!

C’mon VICE, they look nice!

Mostly I saw upscale folks behaving respectfully, despite being  basically penned in a small space with nothing much to do but drink. It was annoying that the basic entry fee only bought you the ability to pay for some $12 pours and buy food, but it was the event’s first try. The Santa Catalina Island Company bought the rights to the name two years ago, and was excited to get it up on its feet. It was a sold-out event too, which Napa’s BottleRock music and wine festival didn’t achieve until it’s third year.

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VIPPITY VIP VIPING IT

The VIP passes seemed to be the way go, getting escorted upstairs to magic VIP land was a huge difference, food and drink a plenty.  There I met nice folks, behaving well, drinking, loose, but no frat boy chants of “show me your tits” or “boats and hoes.” I can’t figure out if the pundits I read bagging on this event just can’t enjoy the occasional dum-dum comedy and thinks the only brothers we should be watching are the Duplass Bros on a split screen with “The Bicycle Thief”. Would they have even recognized UFC fighter Chuck Liddell?

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Kristal Anderson at Fetzer poured me their 1000 Stories Zinfandel with its bourbon-barrell aged theme. A good hook to get the boys on board the winning Zin. They can’t all drink Brosé, can they?

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I also enjoyed both the story of Kimo Sabe Mezcal and the Rubedo Reposado they poured. Ashely Walsh and her father Jim had gone in search of sugar for chocolate (NY Times called their chocolate “the world’s best”) and landed on the agave plant. They had iced bottles of Mexican Squirt (cane sugar baby!) that highlighted the reposado’s smooth notes.

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I will be looking for these brands in LA Restaurants and ordering accordingly.

The Dan Band was one of those things the cool kids were all seeing in 2005. I remember Drew Barrymore and Brad Pitt sitting near me at the old Hollywood Moguls club, now the Sound Nightclub, where Craig Robinson utters his “You old and you pregnant” line from “Knocked Up.” The band has aged well, still all about fun and would eventually play the Roxy a few weeks later.  This is a very good indicator that they are still relevant. The Roxy’s booker Chris Diaz is a Brooklyn taste-maker who booked The Knitting Factory for years. If you don’t believe me, look at the Catalina Wine Mixer crowd vibing on The Dans.

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Could a Catalina Tequila Mixer be next on the horizon? Should the Santa Catalina Island Company company pull a Disney and buy every permutation of The Catalina [insert noun] Mixer and do one each week? Catalina Porn Mixer would be pretty hilarious and would encourage some Vice writer hoping to impress Jezebel to write a screed.