The Wine Hustle Series | Angela Allison of WineSociety
The last time we sat down for a good Wine Hustle read was in September. Needless to say, we are much overdue! I’m very excited to share my latest interview from a woman who is re-thinking how we perceive + drink wine by stripping down its complexity and offering premium Napa wine in a 500ML can! By staying true to her vision + surrounding herself with like-minded + spirited people - Angela Allison is currently making quality wine attainable through her wine community WineSociety. Here is her inspiring story!
How did you get your start in wine and what was your initial inspiration?
It was definitely not an industry I ever dreamed of being in, but our lifestyle and personal experience paved the way and we haven’t looked back since! In 2013, we started our split lifestyle between Cincinnati, OH and San Francisco, CA. The first weekend we spent in SF, we planned a trip to Napa Valley - not because we enjoyed wine (remember we came from the beer mecca), but because we had heard it was a place you just had to see. The beauty of Napa definitely cannot be described and should be on everyone’s bucket list! As we pulled up to our first tasting room, I was a little apprehensive but can still remember that intimidation melting away. An upbeat melody accompanied by witty lyrics, laughter and applause lured us in as we were welcomed with a flight of wine. This was the beginning of it all…
Fast forward to 2018 where our experiences, learnings and passion meshed into a conversation around how to make great wine more accessible and approachable. We jumped on the opportunity to start a company, where we bring great wine in simple familiar packaging (cans) without all the complexity and at an affordable price. A drinkable everyday wine.
I love your concept on real people re-thinking wine - a Wine Society! How did you come up with the name?
We actually debated the name for over a month as we wanted the name to be easy to recognize and clearly define who we were. We ultimately came up with WineSociety - with the Society portion being a group of people from wine newbies to experts that can all share, experience and enjoy great wine together.
What is your favorite part of your job?
As a designer, I must say the packaging, label design and brand development. That is where my true passion and expertise lies. It is tasteful in all aspects and was designed to be relatable and create a connection with our consumers. It segways into taking our customer feedback and doubling down on something that is working great, making improvements (big or small) or even pivoting if needed.
What is the best advice anyone’s ever given you? Do you have a “mantra” you stick to?
My husband launched and grew a very successful real estate business prior to WineSociety and told me to always surround myself with great people. You can't be the best in everything, but you can own your individual strengths and hire others that are experts in the areas you are not. Surrounding yourself with smart driven people helps keep you on your toes, moving forward and creates a true powerhouse.
I also have my own personal mantra that is to always go with your gut and be confident in your choices.
At WINEFARER, we love hearing about the unexpected journeys that stem from wine. Can you share your favorite wine journey with us?
Our newfound love for wine over the past few years has opened our eyes to a whole new world and community! On our 5th wedding anniversary, we were so grateful to visit our friends Villa in Italy (if you want an amazing experience, check out monteverdituscany.com). The Italian culture was captivating and immediately found a place in our hearts. It was the first time our pallets were met with Brunello, Chianti, Vino Noble di Montepulciano, and of course the local vino de la casa (which held its ground as a great table wine and was inspiration for WineSociety - bringing great wine at an approachable price). Now we visit Italy twice a year and continue to draw inspiration from the welcoming culture and divine wine selection.
It seems like you love wine as much as I do, in three words, describe your love affair with wine?
Tastefully shared experience
Finally, what advice would you give women entrepreneurial spirits who want to start their “wine hustle” but are hesitant to take the leap?
There is always going to be hesitation and road blocks, but if you have the passion, drive and hustle, you will reach your end goal. If it were easy, everyone would do it. The hardest part is taking that first leap. Surround yourself with great people that can help you along the way, and you will crush it!