Monday, March 3, 2008

Todd Anderson's Ghost Horse

Last week, as I was tasting through a line-up of Napa Cabs, I came across a 2003 vintage of 2003 Anderson's Conn Valley Napa Cabernet Sauvignon. It's a pure tasting, balanced, not at all over-the-top Napa wine that was showing well. At $50 it's not cheap, but relative to all the new Napa products (not wines as they lack in any discernible wine flavor, but 'products,' because they do not lack for branding, PR and marketing plans).

So imagine my surpise when a co-worker showed me a website for Todd Anderson's super luxury cult wine, Ghost Horse. Basically, the bottles cost anywhere between $500 - $5000 each. The website brings to mind a US Marines TV commercial. I'll leave it at that and let you check out the 'ghost horse world' if you so desire

- Is Todd Anderson for real, or is this a satire on the cult wine phenomenon?
- Is Zac de la Rocha (and anyone else who co-wrote) getting royalties for the use of their recording on the website?
- Would Ghost Horse take down Harlan, Screaming Eagle, and the other heavyweights of Napa Cab Cultland?

7 comments:

David McDuff said...

$5,000 a bottle seems fair for "head cracking wine," don't you think?

I hope it's a joke but I'm very, very afraid it's not.

In any event, it was worth a look for purely sick entertainment purposes. I particularly like the incredibly responsible shot of Todd posing with a glass of wine in one hand and his shotgun in the other. Unbelievable.

cornuto said...

you guys are about six weeks behind.

Joe M. said...

David - yes, unbelievable indeed.

Cornuto - 'you guys' would be me (I'm the only person managing this site). As I'm far from an ebob regular, I did not check out the Ghost Horse thread until recently.

David McDuff said...

If you were including me in "you guys," Cornuto, ditto what Joe said and then some. There's only so much time in the day and none of mine goes to following the Parker site.

Mary Brace said...

Think of it as buying into the Richard Branson lifestyle. When you consider the people who would fork over $500k or $1,000,000 to be a part of Anderson's exclusive little fantasy island ranch, they probably see it as a change to mingle with people they might be able to do business with. If they're right, it's a good investment. If they're wrong they're rubes and we can laugh at them.

Randall G. said...

I have met Todd personally at his annual "Cave Dweller's Party" and can assure you that he is for real and the prices are for real, too. He is a larger than life guy but I don't think he ever imagined his Ghost Horse wines would achieve the level of success (in terms of price) they did. Why not charge that much if people are willing to pay that much? He does business the old fashioned way...finding a niche and capitalizing on it. He is passionate, gets potential customers excited, and builds relationships. If he can get people to fork over $0.5- $1.0 million for a membership, God bless him. I wish I had his charisma. They don't call this a "cult" wine for nothing. Sounds like he should start charging a $10 million up-front fee for people to have the opportunity to live in his compound.

Joe Manekin said...

Randall G -

Regardless of whether or not you are the Randall G I think you are... thanks for stopping by and commenting. Much appreciated.

The guy can feel free to charge what the market will bear. And as we saw up until recently, the market will pay exhorbitant fees for mediocre or even really awful wine, whether it's cult Napa Cab, overrated, over-oaked, classed growths, or any number of other wines which will have a lifespan of 10 years of mediocrity before falling apart.

Any impressions on the Ghost Horse wine? Have you tasted?