T.V. Personality Ruth Ezell Offers Vinos de la Cruz Wine Tasting At Healthy Planet Expo, Oct. 14

by Ruth Ezell

You may be wondering “why is Ruth Ezell promoting wine?” There are a couple of reasons: For starters, they’re very good.

I had my first glass of Vinos de la Cruz at Rue Lafayette cafe in St. Louis (Check it out if you’ve never been. Its croissants are shipped in daily from Paris!). I like my reds dry and the Malbec did not disappoint. A few weeks later (also at the cafe), I met the owners of the company that imports this unique line of wines from the South American country of Uruguay. They said they were facing challenges breaking into the St. Louis market. I lack sales experience but do know many area chefs and restauranteurs and believe strongly in the product I’d ask them to buy. With mounting financial responsibilities, in need of another income stream (who isn’t these days?), and recognizing a ground-floor opportunity when I see one, it just made sense to seize the day and join their team.

That was late April. I’ve used every spare moment since to make cold-calls, follow-ups and arrange wine tastings. The first person to make a purchase was my financial advisor (to whom I will be eternally grateful!). The first public tasting at West End Grill & Pub was a triumph! Thank you Neil Costello! Nearly every wine-drinking customer sampled the Malbec and Cabernet Sauvignon then ordered a glass or two with dinner. Several bought bottles to take home. The bar made money, the customers discovered a delicious wine without a single gram of sugar (take note diabetics!) and I got my first big break as a sales rep. Later that week, a friend let me use her home for a tasting with her friends. Same results. You’re fabulous Maureen! Everybody won, and that’s the way I like it.

These tastings have inspired other ideas (like sugarless-themed gift baskets for the holidays). I ran across some sugar-free chocolate bars at a wonderful chocolatier in Highland, Illinois. That’s a start!

This is a trial-and-error experience. I’m making mistakes and in many cases, my message to retailers and restauranteurs is falling on deaf ears. But every day I learn at least one valuable lesson and figure out ways to work around roadblocks. The challenges have not been frustrating. Quite the contrary, they’ve been exciting to confront and overcome.

Even if you’re not a wine drinker, I hope you’ll stop by my booth at The Healthy Planet Expo to say hi. We can talk TV or if you have any advice, I’m all ears.

Some of my friends say I’m reinventing myself, but I think of this as a realignment. The skills I’m using are the same ones I’ve had all along; I’m just using them a little differently. Whatever you call it, I’m enjoying the journey and looking forward to seeing where it leads.

For more information about Vinos de la Cruz wines contact Ruth Ezell at re@sugarlesswines.com or visit www.sugarlesswines.com. See you at the Expo!