The domain sounds like it could be used for a dating site, but Pairings.com focuses around a different kind of marriage: good food, good wine, and good music.
There is some really great music, video, and interviews on the site, with full performances by Dave Matthews and John Legend as well as some great background music by those two during the other videos.
In the food realm, Tom Colicchio of Top Chef fame provides interesting chatter, and John Besh (who I’m not familiar with, but is referenced as the owner of about a half dozen restaurants) talks over some great, drool-inducing, photographs. Food porn galore.
Representing Constellation Brands and the “Wine” third of things is Genevieve Jansses from Mondavi Winery and Susan Lueker of Simi Winery.
The AMEX advertising is very minimal and doesn’t get int he way. There isn’t even a clear call to action for the campaign yet besides watching their well put together videos. I think the idea is that AMEX card holders would get chances to attend events like these in person. I’m sure it’s probably pretty tough to get invited to these events, however I do know that AMEX offers some great services with respect to ticketed events, including early access to popular concerts.
And lastly, in yesterdays email I said I would share my Pairings dream team if they ever decided to do an event in Philadelphia. In a perfect world, I would bring together Jose Garces (Food), Paul Lapsley (Wine), and Pink (Music).
Jose Garces is the owner of Amada, Tinto, and a handful of other restaurants in Philadelphia. He’s also recently won a competition on Food Network to become the most recent Iron Chef. Kim and I have eaten at Amada and thoroughly enjoyed it. High quality food without being overly pretentious. You have to make reservations like 3 months in advance, but we got a spot at the bar one night. The bar tender knew the wine menu very well, and markups were reasonable. I’ve heard his other restaurants are top notch as well. Jose is definitely the most famous Philadelphian in the food world right now.
Paul Lapsley is head winemaker for Hardy’s Wine. The Pairings Napa and New York events both featured winemakers from Constellation brand wineries, so I thought I would stick to that formula. I’m not cool enough to know many winemakers by name; I didn’t know of Paul before I did the research for this blog post. However, I looked up Hardy’s because it’s a great brand that isn’t afraid to put quality wine in boxes. Paul also seems like an interesting character (grew up in Hong Kong), and I’m guessing would mesh well with Jose Garces and Pink.
Finally, I thought the single-named Pink would flesh out this list nicely. The other events featured solo artists vs. full bands, so I started my search there. I looked up musicians born or otherwise associated with Philadelphia. I found out that Pink was born near Philadelphia in Doylestown, PA (which is actually very close to my hometown of Reading, PA). She’s also female, balancing against the male musicians featured in Napa and New York. Her name would present a couple Pink Wine pun opportunities. Her character would match well with the low key (relatively) Garces and Lapsley. And finally, I think it would be cool to see her dressed up, and potentially sharing her softer side in some acoustic versions of her more melodic songs.
So there’s my list. Let me know what you think. What cities would this format work in? What foodies, oenophiles, and musicians would you choose?