Conan the Tax Hiker

Now that's a gubernatorial pose

Man, I just read some potentially sad news. Arnie over on the Left Coast in Cali is seriously considering raising the excise tax on wine in his state in an attempt to close the state’s $41.6 billion budget gap (it has actually been proposed). The price for Napa and Sonoma bottles are already higher than a cat’s ass. This could hurt.

Ok, so it makes a little sense. He is probably looking at the thriving wine industry with the thought that no matter how bad it gets people still consume alcohol. He is seeing the gap close considerably with such a lucrative local Industry. And wine gives people a sense of calm in times like these. But the bottles have to be not only good but affordable in times like these.

What I love most about California wine is the Central Coast. This is the most exciting area in the state right now and it is on its way to greatness in the eyes of the rest of the country. Fleshy, deep, well-balanced Syrah (Barrel 27) and some smooth merlot (Gainey) come out of here

The article states, “Right now, we pay just 4 cents per 750 milliliter bottle. But if the governor has it his way, the cost could jump to nearly 30 cents for that same size bottle. That is a 640 percent increase.”

And this, ladies and gentlemen is the sad news. The wines from the Central Coast – places like Santa Barbera County, Paso Robles and Santa Ynez Valley- are just beginning to shine their star and plug it in. The movie Sideways (love it or hate it) started some serious exposure and it can only get better from here.

Stacie Jacob with the Paso Robles Wine Country Alliance, is quoted as saying, “the wine industry in San Luis Obispo County alone contributes $1.8 billion into the economy and employs 8,000 people.” These statistics were probably half this about not even ten years ago.

Arnie, please don’t do it. I beg of you from the East Coast NYC. Let us sell some of your states amazing wine the way we have been. The price is right and the quality is fabulous. When people come in for Cali wine I go straight to the Central Coast because I know that whatever they are doing that day or evening the wines we have chosen from this area will please any crowd. They are wines with definite individuality.

If anyone has any thoughts or and info I am missing please let me know.

Everyone cross your fingers.


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