Passion plays an important role in the success of a winemaking business. Continuous education, further study, and research contribute to consistent innovation. Growing your business is a great opportunity for you to grow as a business owner as well.
As new wineries sprout, you need to stay relevant by continually evolving. That said, doing other businesses related to winemaking can also be considered.
In this episode, Anne Kokotos discusses the ways she followed in developing her business – taking further studies, travelling, and meeting amazing people in the wine industry at events she attended all over the world. This keeps her well-informed about wine, winemaking, and the entire wine business.
What you will learn from this episode:
- Learn about the courses to take for basic knowledge and how far you’d go for research and studies to widen your knowledge.
- Discover potential side businesses from winemaking.
- Find out wine marketing strategies that involve teaching children about winemaking
- Hear how Greeks continue the age-old tradition of making wine a part of their culture and diet.
- Learn how to build a beautiful home and family life while managing a successful winemaking business.
Anne Kokotos was born in London in 1951. She grew up between a London boarding school in Surrey and her country house in Suffolk. In 1972 she came to Greece for a summer job – she’s still there!
She got married in 1975 to George Kokotos (civil engineer), and they bought some land in Stamata, Attiki, in 1979, and moved into their house with their baby daughter. In 1980 they planted their vineyard – Cabernet Sauvignon, Merlot & Chardonnay.
The year after, 1981, they produced their first wine from the local Savatiano grape – bought in from local vineyards. In 1983, they picked their first crop of C.S., and their son was born, too.
And they have moved on from there, planting more vineyards and now producing 12 different labels from varieties Savatiano, Roditis, Asyrtiko, Malagouzia, Agiorgitiko Chardonnay, Cabernet Sauvignon, Merlot, and Gewurtztraminer.
Their daughter now lives on the property with her husband and 2 children. Their son lives in London, where he is a partner in a company that imports Greek wines and delicatessen, mostly from small organic producers.
Connect with Anne Kokotos:
- Website: https://kokotosestate.gr/
02:41 – Courses she took that were useful for the wine business and how far she traveled for her research
04:41 – Expanding her knowledge about wine due to discoveries of new grape varieties and offshoots of new wineries
06:28 – Already living a fulfilled life that she can’t imagine doing anything other than winemaking
07:30 – Organizing activities and events for children that ties back to winemaking and marketing the wines
10:07 – Greek wine laws and how wine is a part of Greek culture and diet
12:05 – Making biscuits and sweets as a byproduct of wine
13:05 – Practicing sustainable living and becoming a grape seed supplier of beauty products and possibilities of more side businesses
Quotes from Anne Kokotos:
“I did go to France for a couple of years running at that time, to the Institute of Masters of Wine, which is based in England.”
“I met all sorts of people with whom I stayed in contact for years, from sommeliers to other producers, to oenologists from all over Europe.”
“Only by tasting the wines can you build up the memory and the knowledge.”
“I did taste at the International Wine Competition. Three or four years in London, which was again a great experience because you get to taste with other people who are very experienced and tasting wines from all over the world.”
“If I hadn’t taken that flight 50 years ago, who knows?”
“It’s so much in the culture, in the diet that Greek children grew up, you know, with a knowledge of wine just sipping occasionally.”
“From two years ago, we take the stalk, the skins, and the seeds, which have all been composted by now, and we spread it on the fields as an organic fertilizer.”
“In Greece, we make those wonderful dolmades, which are stuffed grape leaves.”