No coke or hookers, but we’re effing hot!
Thanks to their myopic focus on the wine trade and wine hobbyist (read: your rich great-uncle), traditional wine rags repeatedly run inane close-ups of grapes on their covers. Wine X on the other hand, in order to reach 99.99 percent of potential wine drinkers, cannot. We have to present cover images that seduce the majority of our target audience. (Sadly, this doesn’t mean we can run a tattooed stomach on every cover.)
Granted, we’ve made a few mistakes along the way. Dr. Ruth? Okay, our bad. But we’ve maintained a pretty good track record over our nine years – lots of interesting actors, musicians, athletes, and actor-musician-athletes (hey, we’re in California). Because we get a fair number of questions regarding our covers (i.e., Why pick him? How’d ya get her naked? How’d ya get him naked? How much wine is at these shoots?), we thought we’d share some of our cover models’ quotes and a little inside scoop on how/why they ended up in Wine X.
But before we get to that, allow us, if you will, to share a few anecdotes about covers not featured in the following pages. For example, our “appalling” first cover sent shock waves throughout the geriatric, white-winged wine trade. (Bared, inked stomachs! Fetch my nitro!) Ron Loutherback of Wine Club, and honorary mayor of the geezers, took it upon himself to speak on behalf of his contemporaries:
“The appearance of the new magazine, Wine X, frankly shocked the hell out of me and, worse, shocked many of Wine Club’s customers who received the magazine. I think the magazine went way too far out of line for its own good and, thereby, missed the very audience they wanted to reach. Specifically, the entire feel of the magazine is that it went overboard for the ‘youth’ market and in doing so brought up a lot of negatives. For example, the egregious cover. It looked immature and teen-age-ish.”
Mission accomplished. (We later learned that the “many” in “many of Wine Club’s customers…” was, in fact, just two. Seriously, there are even four teletubbies.)
After fending off the “locals” in an all-day shoot, we figured the fight was over. Until we got the call from a Napa Valley winery that, after receiving the issue, wanted to cease selling the magazine in its tasting room because the cover featured a “Black Bimbo.” (She was actually a pre-med student working her way through school, but that wasn’t the time nor the place for trivialities.)
Now, you’d think we’d have learned a lesson (White Bimbos = Good, Bimbos of Color = Bad?), but on the cover of Vol. 5.4 we dove right back in, featuring a drop-dead hottie African American couple. You know where this is going, don’t you? Once again, a winery (outside Napa this time) called to cancel its retail sales due to the “nature” of our cover.
God bless America.
Our next three covers featured the Pillsbury Dough Boy, Pat Robertson and Miss Teen USA, and every one of them was dipped in Clorox before the shoot. Dough Boy, R.I.P.
We kid, we kid!
Our ugliest cover ever graced Vol. 2.5. We were so desperate for anything that we ended up with “nothing” (exciting). Still, it was only our fifth cover, so most everyone forgave us. “Most” being the key word. Loutherback, sweetie, ya still with us?
We really started to hit our stride with Vol. 3.2, the Tori Amos issue. Except for a few minor slip-ups (did we mention Dr. Ruth?), we’ve scored a compelling array of celebs. It’s been our goal, and will continue to be our goal, to present and represent the ethnically diverse demographic that we’re a part of and strive so diligently to reach. In our vigil, we invite everyone – not just the old, rich white guy standing in a vineyard, looking for the right bunch o’ grapes for his next cover – to join us for a glass of wine and a good time.