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As California’s new mandatory Responsible Beverage Service Certification deadline looms, San Francisco Wine School offers ABC accredited live training for 1 million servers in need

27 June, 2022

As California’s new mandatory Responsible Beverage Service Certification deadline looms, San Francisco Wine School offers ABC accredited live training for 1 million servers in need All alcoholic beverage servers & managers are required to certify for responsible beverage service by August 31, 2022, per the state’s Department of Alcoholic Beverage Control June 27, 2022 - The State of California has issued a new mandate for Responsible Beverage Service (RBS) certification, for all 56,000 licensed businesses in California where alcohol is served that goes into effect this Friday, July 1.  The brand-new training and certification requirement is mandatory for everyone from servers to bartenders to bouncers, anyone who is part of the on-premise alcohol sales and service process for consumers.  These individuals and their managers must be trained through an approved RBS program and pass the California’s Department of Alcohol Beverage Control’s (ABC) certification exam by August 31, 2022.   On-premise licensees who do not have all alcoholic beverage service staff and managers certified by this date will be out of compliance with the ABC when enforcement begins.  This legislation was part of Assembly bills 1221 and 82, which charged the ABC to create this training and certification process.   There are only a handful of certifying organizations within the state like San Francisco Wine School, (SFWS) whose program is approved by the ABC to offer live, instructor-led training online, at their education and event center in South San Francisco, and at client locations throughout the state. A noted certification-focused wine education and event organization, SFWS has been in operation since 2011, offering 25 different programs, along with a wide array of workshops, public events, and private experiences for both trade and consumers.   Recognizing that this mandate needed to serve a wide audience in a short period of time, co-owners David Glancy, MS and Kristin Campbell jumped into action and began developing their program last year.   SFWS has their 4-hour certification class available publicly on July 26, August 22, and September 27 for a cost of $45 per person with opportunities for group discounts.  In addition, the school offers groups, associations, and individual wineries, bars, and restaurants this training privately, allowing them to focus discussions on areas and examples that are most relevant to their particular business.  SFWS’ RBS program is also expected to be available in Spanish in the coming weeks. According to Campbell, "RBS training educates persons seeking employment or who are currently employed as servers for on-premise consumption of alcoholic beverages. It aims to provide these important staff and managers with the necessary skills to responsibly serve alcoholic beverages and mitigate alcohol-related harm in California communities. We used our deep industry knowledge to create a curriculum that is in strict compliance with the ABC’s requirements with the goal of successful certification for all students and are one of only ten approved “in-person” providers authorized to teach live throughout the state."  SFWS has also pioneered hybrid room/zoom offerings during the pandemic where attendees can either attend live in-person or online and receive custom tasting kits across the US when wine is part of the experience.   “Using our state-of-the-art AV system for RBS training will allow us to conveniently and effectively train servers across the state and minimize travel expenses for those who want to participate from home or work.”  Important to note, TIPS, ServeSafe, and LEAD programs and certification completed prior to May 2021 do NOT satisfy the requirements for California’s Responsible Beverage Service Certification.  How the RBS Training and Certification Process Works at San Francisco Wine SchoolOnce registered for a training program at https://sanfranciscowineschool.com/rbs, each on-premise server and manager is required to register with the ABC at https://abcbiz.abc.ca.gov/ before the program start date and pay a $3 fee to obtain their Server ID. This Server ID is presented to SFWS who then certifies their class participation after the training, thereby opening their exam.  They must then pass the ABC's online RBS exam with a score of 70% or higher within 3 attempts after completion of the program to earn the state mandated RBS certification.    About California's Responsible Beverage Service Training Program Act and Related Certification Passage of California Assembly Bill 1221 in 2017 created the Responsible Beverage Service Training Program Act. The bill required the Alcoholic Beverage Control to create the Responsible Beverage Service Training Program (RBSTP) to ensure servers and their managers of alcoholic beverages are educated on the dangers of serving alcohol to minors and over-serving alcohol to patrons with the intention of reducing alcohol-related harm to local communities. The mandate creates a new training requirement for roughly 1,000,000 alcohol servers and managers of alcohol servers at an estimated 56,000 ABC licensees with on-premise alcohol sales privileges. The alcohol servers and managers who work at those locations must register with the ABC, be trained by an ABC approved program, and pass an ABC exam to be certified within 60 days of the enactment or after their first date of employment whichever is later. This certification must be renewed every 3 years by all alcohol servers as mandated by these new regulations. The passing of Assembly Bill 82, on June 29, 2020, extended the date in which this requirement is enacted to July 1, 2022. This change was made to alleviate the financial strain on the hospitality industry caused by the COVID-19 state of emergency. Effective July 1, 2022, all alcohol servers and their managers must obtain a valid RBS certification though an ABC accredited RBS training provider within 60 calendar days from the effective date or their first date of employment.  Uncertified Servers, Managers and Licensees will be out of compliance with this law beginning August 31, 2022, when enforcement begins. To learn more about SFWS' RBS program, visit here or contact help@sfwineschool.com or 650-763-1324.  For media inquiries, images, or interviews, please contact Kimberly Noelle Charles, DipWSET of Charles Communications Associates at kcharles@charlescomm.com or 415-730-0064. # # #  
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San Francisco Chapter of Les Dames d’Escoffier International Opens Applications for New Membership

15 April, 2022

San Francisco Chapter of Les Dames d’Escoffier International Opens Applications for New Membership Philanthropic organization of women leaders in food, fine beverage, and hospitality now accepting self and peer-nominated applications for membership SAN FRANCISCO, CA, April 18 2022—The San Francisco Chapter of Les Dames d’Escoffier International (LDEI) is now accepting applications for membership as it furthers its mission to support and nurture the next generation of women leaders in the food, fine beverage, and hospitality industries. For the first time, prospective members may apply directly to the organization without a nomination from an existing chapter member. This national policy change aims to provide women with an easier path to apply to LDEI for a more equitable nomination process that furthers the organization’s commitment to diversity. Prospective members may also be nominated by existing chapter members, as in years past. In 2022, the San Francisco Chapter of LDEI (LDEI-SF) welcomed a record-breaking 16 new members. In the 2022-2023 nomination period, the chapter will induct 10 new Dames, who will join a membership of accomplished leaders in food, beverage, wine, hospitality, publishing, media, public relations, and agriculture. Dames of the LDEI-SF engage in events, programs, and philanthropy. “The San Francisco Chapter of Les Dames d’Escoffier has always been blessed with a membership of forward-thinking professionals with diverse backgrounds,” said Pam Mazzola, President of LDEI-SF. “We are striving to propel and support women in positions of leadership across the many facets of the hospitality industry.” All qualified individuals are encouraged to apply via the online form through the self-nomination process. Women may also be invited to join LDEI by existing chapter members. LDEI-SF seeks nominees who will be active members of the Chapter. Members are requested to attend at least two member events per year and participate in the organization as volunteers, committee members, or chairs, host an event or serve on the Board of Directors. To qualify, nominees should: Have a minimum of 5 years of professional experience in their respective field Possess the highest qualities of professionalism Be willing to actively contribute their time and talent as members Support the Les Dames d’Escoffier International Mission, Vision, and Basic Values Applicants will be asked to secure a letter of recommendation from a current Dame of the San Francisco Chapter. If the applicant is nominating themselves, a letter of recommendation will be provided if the applicant meets the criteria for membership. For a complete list of requirements, please review the application page on the LDEI-SF website. Completed applications will be accepted until May 31, 2022. Please contact LDEI-SF Membership Chair Frankie Whitman with any questions about nominations at frankiewhitman@gmail.com. ### About Les Dames d’Escoffier International LDEI is an international organization of women leaders who create a supportive culture in their communities to achieve excellence in the food, beverage and hospitality fields. To do this, 2,500 members in 43 chapters worldwide provide leadership, educational opportunities and philanthropy within their communities. For more information, visit LDEI.org and follow us on Facebook, Instagram @lesdamesintl, Linked-in and Twitter @lesdamesintl. More information on The San Francisco chapter of LDEI can be accessed at lesdamessf.org. Follow our chapter activities on Instagram @lesdamessf. Media Contact Kimberly Noelle Charles, DipWSET Charles Communications Associates 415-730-0064 kcharles@charlescomm.com     
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San Francisco Chapter of Les Dames d’Escoffier International Hosts "Upcycling! The Future of Food and the Planet" as Part of “Table Talks with Les Dames”

15 March, 2022

San Francisco Chapter of Les Dames d’Escoffier International Hosts "Upcycling! The Future of Food and the Planet" as Part of “Table Talks with Les Dames”Everyone’s Invited to the LDEI Table for Virtual Events  During Women’s History MonthSan Francisco, CA – March 15, 2022– The San Francisco chapter of Les Dames d’Escoffier International (LDEI) will host a virtual event entitled "Upcycling! The Future of Food and the Planet: Thinking Bigger About Food Waste" on Monday, March 21st at 5:30 PM PST. Tickets are $25 and all are welcome to sign up here. The event is part of LDEI’s “Table Talks with Les Dames” – a month of virtual events hosted by LDEI chapters around the world. The San Francisco “Tables Talks with Les Dames” event will feature Claire Schlemme and Caroline Cotto, founders of Renewal Mill, moderated by Dame Alice Medrich.  Food waste from agriculture and food production represents a $1 trillion loss annually, from produce and byproducts that are never eaten.   Upcycling is essential to create a food system that is more sustainable and resilient, as well as environmentally friendly. This panel will share insights into this philosophy, and how one female-owned Bay Area startup is meeting the challenge of food waste by creating upcycled ingredients.    “We look forward to welcoming new faces to our table at this event,” said San Francisco LDE Chapter President Pam Mazzola. “Women’s History Month is a perfect time to shine a light on women in our industry through this series of fun and educational events.” In addition to the San Francisco LDEI event, dozens of other LDEI chapters around the world are hosting events, ranging from cooking and baking demonstrations with accomplished chefs, interviews and panel discussions with authors, journalists, chefs, restaurateurs and other leaders in their field, food and beverage tastings and more. The complete calendar of events can be seen here. A portion of the proceeds from all “Table Talks with Les Dames” virtual events will support the scholarship and philanthropy programs for each local chapter. About Les Dames d’Escoffier International LDEI is an international organization of women leaders who create a supportive culture in their communities to achieve excellence in the food, beverage and hospitality fields. To do this, 2,500 members in 43 chapters worldwide provide leadership, educational opportunities and philanthropy within their communities. For more information, visit LDEI.org and follow us on Facebook, Instagram @lesdamesintl, Linked-in and Twitter @lesdamesintl. More information on The San Francisco chapter of LDEI can be accessed at https://lesdamessf.org.   Follow our chapter activities at IG https://www.instagram.com/lesdamessf/?hl=en @lesdamessf.   Register for this event here.   Credentialed members of the media can attend as our guests.  Please contact Kimberly Noelle Charles at kcharles@charlescomm.com or 415-730-0064 for more information. ### Kimberly Noelle Charles, DipWSET 415-730-0064 kcharles@charlescomm.com  
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Thought Leader Amanda Wittstrom Higgins Launches Full Cup Solutions, a full-service consulting firm for future-forward agriculture and beverage industry businesses

7 March, 2022

Thought Leader Amanda Wittstrom Higgins Launches Full Cup Solutions, a full-service consulting firm for future-forward agriculture and beverage industry businessesThe bespoke advisory model taps multi-faceted expertise to offer long-term planning, innovation, advising and accountability   PASO ROBLES, CA, March 7, 2022 – Leveraging her knowledge of—and networks in—all aspects of the alcohol beverage space and propelled by a deep personal investment in the agricultural world, industry notable and business strategist Amanda Wittstrom Higgins recently launched Full Cup Solutions (www.fullcupsolutions.com), a full-service firm specializing in results driven unconventional planning in the marketing, sales, operations, employee development sectors and beyond. The venture offers fresh eyes, experience, a collaborative mindset, and vetted expertise in the disciplines that can launch businesses into next-level success. The unique approaches include a custom “advisory board” made of visionaries, C-suite leaders and industry legends recruited by Higgins and based on client needs. The firm’s approach is based on its core principles of crafting products with soul, enacting industry change, creating opportunity for others and honoring and understanding of the agricultural world. “The modern professional world requires an almost impossible level of expertise in so many disciplines—something even the best businesses cannot hope to achieve,” says Higgins. “I love bringing talented people together and collaborating on solutions that benefit both the client and the industry. Full Cup’s goal is to ensure businesses are operating at a best-in-class level in every capacity, while at the same time building for the fast-evolving future.” Higgins’ passion for and diverse expertise in the alcohol beverage business— from DTC, national distribution and operational streamlining to social media, marketing and in-person and digital events—as well as a commitment to promoting the California Central Coast wine region worldwide, have established her as a key voice in evolving the American wine and spirits’ market. Prior to launching Full Cup Solutions, she was Executive Vice President at Ancient Peaks Winery in Paso Robles, co-founded the Wine Speak Paso Robles trade event and Dream Big Darling events and educational platform, and was named a Wine Enthusiast Top 40 Under 40 honoree. She was also named Central Coast Wine Industry Person of the Year, and a SLO Tribune Top 20 Under 40 notable. A fourth generation Central Coast resident, Higgins previously served on the boards of the SLO Coast Wine Collective and Paso Robles Wine Country Alliance.  “Amanda is one of those rare people who consistently overdeliver,” says Dr. Laura Catena, Managing Director of Catena Zapata in Mendoza, Argentina. “She understands the power of charisma, the power of communication, the power of connection and the importance of a budget. I look forward to working with her over the years to come.”  For a consultation or more information about Full Cup Solutions, visit www.fullcupsolutions.com or email Amanda Higgins at connect@fullcupsolutions.com. For interviews, images and further information for the media contact Kimberly Noelle Charles, Charles Communications Associates at kcharles@charlescomm.com or 415|701-WINE (9463).  
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Glancy Wine Education Foundation Announces Fall Fundraising Drive and Addition of Two New Board Members

31 August, 2021

Glancy Wine Education Foundation Announces Fall Fundraising Drive and Addition of Two New Board Members Industry veterans Kimberly Noelle Charles DipWSET and Master Sommelier Vincent Morrow to join board SAN FRANCISCO, CA (August 31, 2021) – The Glancy Wine Education Foundation has begun the annual fundraising drive leading up to its annual gala celebration event in conjunction with the 10th anniversary of the San Francisco Wine School on November 6, 2021. In addition, two new members have been added to the organization’s volunteer board of directors: Kimberly Noelle Charles, DipWSET, a marketing executive for her own firm Charles Communications Associates with more than 30 years of experience in the wine industry, and Master Sommelier Vincent Morrow, who currently serves as the Wine Director for PRESS Napa Valley and is chairperson of the diversity committee for the Court of Master Sommeliers Americas. “We’re positively thrilled to have Kimberly and Vincent join the board,” said board Vice President, Alder Yarrow. “They both have demonstrated career-long commitments to wine education and supporting diversity in this industry, which makes them a perfect fit.” The foundation’s annual gala celebration plays a crucial role in raising the funds required to provide wine education scholarships to wine and hospitality professionals in need of assistance. Donations of silent auction items, ranging from wine to services to experiences are being sought for this fundraising event and sponsorships of various types are also available. Interested parties should contact board President Cheryl Halloran at cheryl.gwef@gmail.com or 408-806-3757. Donations and sponsorships can also be arranged online at: https://sanfranciscowineschool.ejoinme.org/donateauctionitem. Professionals in need of financial aid are encourage to apply for scholarships year-round at GlancyWineEducationFoundation.Org. About The Glancy Wine Education Foundation Established in 2020, The Glancy Wine Education Foundation is a registered a 501(c)(3) tax-exempt, not-for-profit organization dedicated to assisting underserved and minority communities with scholarships to further their professional wine education, increase diversity, and raise earning power. Find out more at GlancyWineEducationFoundation.Org.  
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2020 Wine Country Fire Relief Fundraiser Kicks Off

24 August, 2020

For Immediate Release                                                                                                                          Contact: Charles Communications Associates                                                                         press@charlescomm.com                                                                         415-730-0064   2020 Wine Country Fire Relief Fundraiser Kicks Off Wine Industry Marketing Professionals Regroup to Fundraise for Wine Regions Under Threat in California San Francisco, CA  August 24, 2020 – Today, five wine industry marketing professionals are launching a fundraising campaign for direct relief for those in California’s wine country affected by the statewide lightning fire complex. Many wine regions throughout the state have come under siege due to the fires that unleashed in the pre-dawn hours of August 15th. As of this writing 19 fire complexes comprising 949,697 acres total are affected. This includes the wine regions located in Alameda, Contra Costa, Lake, Monterey, Napa, Santa Clara, Solano, Sonoma and Yolo counties, which have experienced loss or are under threat. One week in, containment numbers are less than 20% for most of the fires, which has been recorded as the largest in terms of acreage.    The California wine industry makes 81% of U.S. wine and is the world’s 4th largest producer.   Representing 635,000 acres, its 3,900 wineries and 5,900 grape growers contribute approximately $114 billion annually to the U.S. economy providing 786,000 jobs and $35 billion in wages, according to the Wine Institute. During the 2017 wine country fires, the team, comprised of Tia Butts, Katie Calhoun, Kimberly Charles, Rebecca Hopkins launched a GoFundMe campaign, raising close to $100,000 for direct relief focused on farmworkers who are a vital part of the wine industry's fabric. This campaign will have a similar objective, supporting various regions' most essential needs and is joined this year by southern California based Katherine Jarvis. A GoFundMe page has been set up at https://www.gofundme.com/f/2020-wine-country-fire-relief-fund and the team has identified a number of causes included on the attached work in progress addendum that will be in receipt of funding. In 2017,  One Hope’s CEO and Co-Founder Jake Kloberdanz provided a generous matching gift to the fund.  For more information, please contact Charles Communications Associates at press@charlescomm.com or 415-730-0064.   Please consider donating and share this campaign with friends, colleagues and those who love and appreciate the great wines of California.   Again, contributions can be made here. Social Media: Follow the Facebook Page for updates: 2020 Wine Country Fire Relief Fund Stay updated via social media on Instagram, Facebook and Twitter at:  #winecountryfirerelief and #WCFR and #2020winecountryfirerelief  Other helpful topics to follow include:  #calfire, #california, #californiawildfire, #2020californiafires, #2020winecountryfires, #californiafires, #LNULightningComplex, #SCULightningComplex #CZULightning, #RiverFire Organizations targeted for 2020 Wine Country Fire Relief Funding American Red Cross https://www.redcross.org/donate/ World Central Kitchen https://donate.wck.org/give Firefighters Relief - California Fire Foundation https://linktr.ee/cafirefound Providing emotional and financial assistance to families of fallen firefighters, firefighters and the communities they protect. Napa County Napa Valley Community Foundation https://www.napavalleycf.org/ Sonoma County Sonoma County Vintners Emergency Relief https://sonomawine.com/foundation/ https://undocufund.org/ Sonoma Family Meal https://www.sonomafamilymeal.org/ Monterey County Monterey County Community Resilience Program https://montereyco.recovers.org/ https://foodbankformontereycounty.org/ Santa Cruz and San Mateo Counties https://www.ksbw.com/article/how-to-help-the-central-coast-fire-victims/33674589 General Info Regular Updates on the Fires and containment https://www.fire.ca.gov/incidents/ XXX
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Charles Communications Associates Announces its 2019 Quarterly Client Update

10 April, 2019

Charles Communications Associates Announces its 2019 Quarterly Client Update   San Francisco, CA, April 10, 2019 – Charles Communications Associates (CCA) is pleased to announce the addition of three new clients to its roster as of April 2019. The roster includes a robust trade association from Anderson Valley, a beloved annual charity auction and event in Mendocino celebrating its 35th year, and a venerated 131-year-old French crystal glassware design house.  CCA remains commited to its original and fresh marketing approach in addition to its public relations suite of services and is thrilled to announce its new 2019 roster.   The list of CCA’s current clients is as follows:    New as of 2019 Anderson Valley Winegrowers Association, Anderson Valley, CA Mendocino Wine Song, Mendocino, CA Lalique North America (special projects), New York, NY   Existing clients  Broadside Wines, Paso Robles, CA since 2013 Consorzio Tutela del Vino Conegliano Valdobbiadene Prosecco, Italy since 2018 Cycles Gladiator, California since 2013 Domaine Carneros, Carneros, CA from 1987-1998, 2007-2011 & since 2018 Gonzalez Byass Chilean portfolio, since 2016 (Veramonte, Ritual, Neyen & Primus)  Laurel Glen Vineyard, Sonoma, CA since 2018 Murrieta’s Well, Livermore Valley 2009-2013 & since 2018  Onward Wines & Farmstrong, CA since 2017 Parallel Wines, Napa, CA since 2007 Portlandia Vintners, Willamette Valley, OR since 2017 Wente Vineyards, Livermore Valley 2009-2013 & since 2018 Wine Hooligans, Novato, CA since 2013 For press inquiries, please feel free to reach out to Kimberly Noelle Charles via email at press@charlescomm.com or by phone at (415) 701-9463About Charles Communications Associates  Founded in 2003, Charles Communications Associates, LLC (CCA) is an independent creative marketing communications and public relations firm based in San Francisco, California, that helps local and global companies create, build, and launch brands. Recognized as one of the most effective marketing firms in the wine industry, CCA is also known for success in the gourmet, natural, and organic food and beverage categories, as well as for top shelf spirits and luxury products marketing.   Please socialize with us @CharlesComm on Twitter, and @AlltheSwirl on Instagram and Facebook. Discover more at www.charlescomm.com.     ###
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Charles Communications Associates Announces its 2018 Quarterly Client Update

20 February, 2018

For Immediate Release                                                              Contacts:                  Kimberly Noelle Charles,                                                                                                                                         Louise Jordan, or Alexandra Fondren                                                                                                               press@charlescomm.com                                                                                            415|701-9463                                                                                                                                               Charles Communications Associates Announces its 2018 Quarterly Client Update Signs Key Clients at Start of the Year    San Francisco, CA, February 20, 2017 – Charles Communications Associates (CCA) is pleased to announce the addition of five new clients to its roster as of the beginning of 2018. The roster includes three former clients who have reengaged with CCA for the firm’s original and fresh marketing approach in addition to its public relations suite of services. Wente Vineyards and Murrieta’s Well of the Livermore Valley AVA and Domaine Carneros of the Carneros AVA worked with CCA previously and the Consorzio for Prosecco DOCG and Smith Story Wine Cellars are new clients as of late 2017/early 2018.   The list of CCA’s current clients is as follows:    New as of 2018  Domaine Carneros, Carneros, CA from 1987-1998, 2007-2011 & 2018 Consorzio Tutela del Vino Conegliano Valdobbiadene Prosecco, Italy 2018 Murrieta’s Well, Livermore Valley 2009-2013 & 2018  Smith Story Wine Cellars, Sonoma County & Anderson Valley, 2018 Wente Vineyards, Livermore Valley 2009-2013 & 2018   Existing clients  Broadside Wines, Paso Robles, CA since 2013 Cycles Gladiator, California since 2013 Crocker & Starr, St. Helena, CA since 2016 Fess Parker Addendum, Napa, CA 2000-2007, and since 2017 Gonzalez Byass Chilean portfolio, since 2016 (Veramonte, Ritual, Neyen & Primus)  Onward Wines & Farmstrong, California since 2017 Wine Hooligans, Novato, CA since 2013   Please feel free to reach out to either Kimberly Noelle Charles, Louise Jordan or Alexandra Fondren via email at press@charlescomm.com or by phone at (415) 701-9463About Charles Communications Associates  Founded in 2003, Charles Communications Associates, LLC (CCA) is an independent creative marketing communications and public relations firm based in San Francisco, California, that helps local and global companies create, build, and launch brands. Recognized as one of the most effective marketing firms in the wine industry, CCA is also known for success in the gourmet, natural, and organic food and beverage categories, as well as for top shelf spirits and luxury products marketing.   Please socialize with us @CharlesComm on Twitter, and @AlltheSwirl on Instagram and Facebook. Discover more at www.charlescomm.com.     ###
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Charles Communications Associates Announces Distribution of Funds for Fire Relief for Napa and Sonoma Counties

20 February, 2018

For Immediate Release                                                                                           Contact:                   Charles Communications Associates                                                                                                                                       press@charlescomm.com                                                                                                                                                                     415|701-9463       Charles Communications Associates Announces  Distribution of Funds for Fire Relief for Napa and Sonoma Counties One Hope Foundation Matching Campaign   February 14, 2018 – San Francisco, CA – On this Valentine’s Day, our hearts are particularly full at Charles Communications Associates as we announce the distribution of funds for Napa and Sonoma County fire relief from our successful GoFundMe campaign which raised close to $60,000 in the weeks following the devastating fires of October 2017. Motivated to spring into action and help communities who have helped so many others over the years, Charles Communications Associates Founder & President Kimberly Noelle Charles felt compelled to activate a network of journalists, colleagues, clients and friends to raise money for both immediate and midterm needs for fire relief.     The week of the fires, which broke out Sunday October 9, 2017, the Charles Communications Associates team, along with a network of peers including Beck Hopkins of Folio Wine Company, Katie Calhoun of Calhoun & Company and Tia Butts of Tia Butts PR, mobilized a supply run to 7 different shelters and organizations in Sonoma and Napa Counties with funds from the campaign, as well as the generous in kind support of Target and Costco. Recipients included the MentorMe organization based at the Cavanaugh Recreational Center in Petaluma which created four shelters for those displaced by the fires. In Napa, supplies were distributed to Puertas Abiertas, the Salvation Army, Mentis and the Cope Family Center.     Generous donors from around the country contributed to a fund that exceeded initial expectations, prompting Kimberly Charles to implement both immediate and longer term needs for communities that were affected given the scale of devastation, which included 44 lives lost, 162,344 acres burned (Atlas, Nunns, Tubbs and Pocket fires) and 7,799 structures lost, including two dozen wineries in the two counties which were either fully or partially destroyed. The fires were part of a statewide firestorm which has been recorded as the deadliest and costliest in California history.The latest numbers indicate losses of upwards of $8 billion alone.    Wanting to specifically address communities that support and provide the wine industry with labor and services, Charles Communications Associates (CCA) and its peer team identified Undocufund.org, Ole Health Clinic and Support707.org to receive a total of $37,000. The ONEHOPE Foundation, led by Jake Kloberdanz, generously offered to match the funds for both Ole Health and Undocufund in addition to its very successfully separate campaign for fire relief.   The GoFundMe campaign is still active and accepting donations for ongoing needs by contributing here:  https://www.gofundme.com/fire-relief-napa-sonoma-counties. Ever resilient, the communities and towns are in the midst of rebuilding much of which will take years to recover given the scale of loss.   About Charles Communications Associates  Celebrating its 15th anniversary in 2018, Charles Communications Associates, LLC (CCA) is an independent creative marketing communications and public relations firm based in San Francisco, California, that helps local and global companies create, build, and launch brands. Recognized as one of the most effective marketing firms in the wine industry, CCA is also known for success in the gourmet, natural, and organic food and beverage categories, as well as for top shelf spirits and luxury products marketing.   Please socialize with us @CharlesComm on Twitter, and @AlltheSwirl on Instagram and Facebook.   For more information, please contact Kimberly Noelle Charles at kcharles@charlescomm.com or 415-701-9463.   # # #
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Memorial Event for Bruce Cass

9 May, 2017

Memorial Event for Bruce Cass Thursday May 25, 2017  Bruce Cass 1948-2016 WHO: A celebration of the life of writer, educator, author and bon vivant Bruce Cass who passed away September 20, 2016.   WHAT: A Smackdown party in the tradition of Bruce Cass’ infamous annual gatherings at Ft. Miley on Ocean Beach in San Francisco after the Bay to Breakers run.  It will be an evening of conviviality, hedonism and friendship. WHEN:  The Smackdown celebration of Bruce Cass’ life will be held Thursday May 25th from 6:30-9:30 PM at the University Club of San Francisco.   Wine & appetizers will be served and guests are invited to bring a bottle of wine to share (please note Bruce’s wishes as it relates to the definition of “wine”[1] appropriate to bring to such an affair.) WHERE: The University Club of San Francisco 800 Powell Street.  We will have both the Black Cat Bar and adjoining room for the party.   Guests should RSVP to Kimberly Noelle Charles, DWS at kcharles@charlescomm.com.  Additionally, we will have a PA system. Those interested in speaking about Bruce should contact Michael Denny at  mike@dennyconnect.com to coordinate.  We expect many contributions regarding this extraordinary man.     MORE: For more information about Bruce and his life and work, we invite you to read more here and visit his website.   In addition, please see this lovely tribute from Jancis Robinson, MW his co-author for the Oxford Companion to the Wines of North America.    #   #   # [1] “WINE - Do not skimp on this half of the equation! In the NBA one does NOT go meekly into the paint! And neither should you come to the Smackdown with some weak, refinery product from the grocery store. Save bottles with cute animal names for Poker Night. The ironclad rule is each adult in your group must bring a bottle of wine costing at least $20. This crowd tends to be very wine savvy. Ribald, and a bit licentious, but very interested in rare and unusual wine tasting opportunities. Prominent wine personalities fly in from New York, Chicago, and Australia to talk trash at this event. Every bottle gets passed around to 15 or 20 strangers, so you don't want your name associated with any weak offerings. If you've been wondering when you are going to meet people worthy of that 15-year-old magnum bottle of South African Cabernet in your closet, this event IS the answer.”
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Spring 2017 Client Update

3 April, 2017

San Francisco, CA, April 3, 2017 – As we at Charles Communications Associates (CCA) usher in the spring season, we would like to share our quarterly current client roster.   The list of CCA’s current clients is as follows:    Broadside Wines, Paso Robles, CA since 2013 Cangria, California* Cycles Gladiator, California since 2013 Crocker & Starr, St. Helena, CA Emeritus Vineyards, Russian River Valley since 2014 Fess Parker, Santa Barbara & Napa, CA* 2000-2007, 2017 re-engaged Gallica Wines, St. Helena, CA* Greenbar Distillery, Los Angeles, CA* Hourglass Vineyards, Napa, CA since 2011 Maison Corbeaux, San Francisco, CA since Onward Wines & Farmstrong, California* Parallel Vineyards, Napa Valley, CA Wine HooligansPaso Robles, CA  *Denotes new as of our last quarterly announcement    Please feel free to reach out to either Kimberly Charles or Alexandra Fondren via email at press@charlescomm.com or by phone at (415) 701-9463.     About Charles Communications Associates  Founded in 2003, Charles Communications Associates, LLC (CCA) is an independent creative marketing communications and public relations firm based in San Francisco, California, that helps local and global companies create, build, and launch brands. Recognized as one of the most effective marketing firms in the wine industry, CCA is also known for success in the gourmet, natural, and organic food and beverage categories, as well as for top shelf spirits and luxury products marketing. In 2013, CCA formed a strategic alliance with Cornerstone Communications Ltd in New York City to better provide clients with contacts and a network in two of the most important media and wine markets in the country.    Please socialize with us @CharlesComm on Twitter, and @AlltheSwirl on Instagram and Facebook.  
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Charles Communications Associates Has Been Named to Handle Georges Duboeuf PR and Marketing Communications in the US

16 August, 2016

     San Francisco, California, August 2016 – Charles Communications Associates has been retained by Quintessential, the family owned-and-operated import, marketing and sales company headquartered in Napa, CA, to spearhead its public relations and marketing communications efforts for Les Vins Georges Duboeuf in the US.   Quintessential was named exclusive importer of Georges Duboeuf-branded wines in the US on January 1, 2016 in an effort to re-introduce their Villages, Cru, Domaine and Chateau wines to the wine trade (distributors, retailers, restaurants, etc.) and consumers, and to underscore the enthusiasm and joie de vivre surrounding the traditional “end-of-harvest” November release of Beaujolais Nouveau.     When seeking an agency to work with on Georges Duboeuf’s PR campaigns, Charles Communications Associates appealed to Quintessential based on the agency’s expertise and track record with the French wine industry and proven success refreshing brands.  Founded in 2003 by Kimberly Noelle Charles, Charles Communications Associates is a pioneering boutique marketing firm with deep knowledge of French culture, wine, and gastronomy.   In announcing the appointment, Dennis Kreps, co-owner of Quintessential with his father, Stephen D. Kreps, said, “For 35 years, Georges Duboeuf has been a leading name in French wine in the US. We’re confident that Charles Communications’ experience and successes with other wine clients, especially in the public relations and social media realm, can help us in our efforts to bring the wines of Georges Duboeuf to a wide range of consumer audiences. They will focus primarily on the introduction of the 2016 Beaujolais Nouveau, and also on the 2015 vintage, already acclaimed as one of the greatest ever from Beaujolais, that will be available in the country by the end of August.”   As head of public relations at Kobrand Wine & Spirits in New York City for 13 years, Kimberly Charles worked primarily with French brands including Maison Louis Jadot, Champagne Taittinger, among other leading brands, where she developed key messaging, creative marketing campaigns, led press trips to France, secured partnerships with top Michelin chefs and leading hotels, and putting her fluency in French to use. The Charles Communications team shares Charles’ passion for French culture, and her senior staff has ample experience marketing Bordeaux en primeur campaigns and even working a Burgundy harvest.   Of working with the Duboeuf brand, Charles shares “Having a deep passion for France and her gastronomy, the region of Beaujolais offers much in the way of charm and seriousness, depending on what the wine lover is seeking.  The Beaujolais appellation has wines for every occasion, be it a casual gathering or a serious sit-down wine tasting. Georges Duboeuf as a brand has innovated the category, and offers an incredible educational and interactive experience at Hameau Duboeuf in Romaneche-Thorins. Over my career, I’ve noted that Beaujolais is often the favorite wine of choice to drink with family and friends among leading retailers, chefs, consumers. My team is eager to help spread the passion for this beautiful region to new and established audiences.”   With 30+ years of experience in the wine world, Charles Communications’ senior team has shaped many brands, both major and minor, through innovative marketing strategies. Some of Charles Communications Associates’ past and recent clients include E. & J. Gallo, the Wines of Lodi, California (from 2012-2016), Square One Organic Vodka, Robert Parker’s Wine Advocate and the Wines of Uruguay among many others. Charles Communications plans to deliver the charm and appeal of the Beaujolais region to Georges Duboeuf audiences via strategic social media campaigns, media relations, and event coordination, publicity and promotion.   About Quintessential    Founded in 2002 by father and son, Stephen D. and Dennis Kreps, Quintessential is a family owned-and-operated import, marketing and sales company headquartered in Napa, CA. It is dedicated exclusively to representing multi-generational, family owned-and-operated producers who have the same passion for winemaking as Quintessential has in strategically marketing and selling their wines. These producers, from most of the top wine regions around the world, create wines that offer the best, most authentic expression of the grapes from their respective vineyards.   Quintessential’s roster of “top-quality” family producers include Bodega Valentin Bianchi, New Age, Sensual and Pascual Toso from Argentina; Henry’s Drive, Pillar Box, Shirvington, Paringa, 3 Rings, Kay Brothers and Frankland Estatefrom Australia; California’s Ironstone Vineyards, Eponymous and Two Angels; Brazil’s Bodegas Perini and Macaw wines; the Chilean wines of Vina Koyle, Matetic Vineyards and TerrapuraLes Vins Georges DuboeufGustave Lorentz, Chateau Ferry-Lacombe, Cachette and Esprit du Rhone from France; the Karolyi Estate wines from Hungary; Villa Huesgen Rieslings from Germany; Italy’s La MannellaAttilio Ghisolfi, Paolo Manzone, Luca Bosio, Bel Colle, Ascevi Luwa, Vino dei Fratelli and Villa de Varda Grappas and Liqueurs; the Portuguese wines of Quinta do Vallado, Vila Nova and Alexandre Relvas; Spain’s Bodegas Muriel, Vina Eguia, Conde de los Andes, Marquis de Elciego, Real Compania, Pazo Cilleiro, Figuero, and Bodegas Farina, and South Africa’s Simonsig Estate.     About Charles Communications Associates  Founded in 2003, Charles Communications Associates, LLC (CCA) is an independent creative marketing communications and public relations firm based in San Francisco, California, that helps local and global companies create, build, and launch brands. Recognized as one of the most effective marketing firms in the wine industry, CCA is also known for success in the gourmet, natural, and organic food and beverage categories, as well as for top shelf spirits and luxury products marketing. In 2013, CCA formed a strategic alliance with Cornerstone Communications Ltd in New York City to better provide clients with contacts and a network in two of the most important media and wine markets in the country.  For more information please contact press@charlescomm.com or 415.701.9463.  
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Charles Communications Associates is seeking a sharp, savvy, serious intern for 2015 fall/winter/spring semesters

27 August, 2015

San Francisco, CA, August 25th 2015-  Charles Communications Associations is an independent creative marketing communications firm focused on media, marketing and branding that helps local and global companies create, build and launch brands. Recognized as one of the most effective firms particularly in the international wine industry, CCA is also known for success in the gourmet, natural and organic food and beverage categories, as well as for top shelf spirits and luxury products marketing. Realizing the constantly growing potential of new media as marketing platforms, Charles Communications develops and executes strategies for clients driven by an in-depth understanding and experience with social network sites, blogs and other platforms.   We are seeking a fall and/or winter intern at our agency and are accepting resumes of qualified candidates. Criteria are included here:   Opportunities Available: Fall/Winter 2015 Internship Available    Job Description: We are looking for a part time intern (3-4 days a week) who can work at our hip downtown Financial District #FiDi San Francisco office and who will jump in and contribute to our smart, fast paced team. We need a smart, detail oriented, resourceful individual who is self-motivated, not afraid to ask questions, enthusiastic, and willing to learn.  Responsibilities: Be familiar with CCA’s clients and our general marketing strategies Assist with CCA’s social media channels Work on client projects as needed such as event support, social media, research, press releases and more Assist with general office operations Qualifications: Familiarity with Macs & Excel in particular Up-to-date on the latest social media trends and social media savvy in a variety of channels: Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, Pinterest, Tumblr, etc. THIS IS KEY -we want STRONG STRATEGIC experience in social Timeliness, attention to detail and accuracy are key to this position Excellent written & verbal communications skills Ability to work well with others while also running projects independently at times Applicants must have at least 1 prior internship in an agency environment Takes ownership of each task, being thoughtful and thorough in execution Familiarity of CisionPoint, MailChimp, and Vertical Response is a plus! Knowledge of the food & wine industry   Highly motivated and eager to learn   Compensation: This internship offers a combination of school credit and a bi-weekly stipend. Several of our internships in the past have resutled in full time employment.    To apply, please submit your resume and cover letter, along with the answers the following questions:   1.     What most interests you about working in Marketing? 2.     What are the top 5 media outlets you read in your free time and why? 3.     What is the most recent memorable food and/or wine experience and what made it so?   For further information and background, visit our website at www.charlescomm.com. Also visit our blog at www.alltheswirl.com, our page on Facebook, follow us on Twitter at @CharlesComm or on Instagram @AlltheSwirl.   ###
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Charles Communications Associates Quarterly Company Update Client Roster and Staffing Update Summer 2015

27 August, 2015

San Francisco, CA – As we at Charles Communications Associates (CCA) prepare to welcome September, we would like to share our quarterly current client roster as well as some exciting staffing updates:   The list of CCA’s current clients is as follows:   The Bank of Wine & Spirits at Wingtip, San Francisco, CA* Broadside Wines, Paso Robles, CA Cycles Gladiator Wines, Central Coast, CA Emeritus Vineyards, Sebastopol, CA Hourglass Vineyards, Napa, CA Huneeus Vintners, Chile, South America Matter of Taste, Nationwide, USA 2015-2016 Parallel Wines, Napa Valley, CA Popelouchum Crowdfunding Project with Randall Grahm, San Juan Bautista, CA* SakéOne, Forest Grove, OR SherryFest, New York, NY The Lodi Winegrape Commission, Lodi, CA The Wines of Uruguay, Montevideo, Uruguay Wine Hooligans, Paso Robles, CA Temecula Olive Oil Company, Temecula, CA* *Denotes new as of our last quarterly announcement   Additionally, CCA would like to announce the appointment of Ana Roselli, as Account Coordinator starting October 6th.  Ana recently completed her MBA in Social Venture/CSR and hails from Rio de Janeiro, Brazil and in addition to her work as a key part of the account team, she will help focus on growing the socially responsible client base.    Please feel free to reach out to either Kimberly Charles or Alexandra Fondren via email at press@charlescomm.com or by phone at (415) 701-9463.   About Charles Communications Associates Founded in 2003, Charles Communications Associates, LLC (CCA) is an independent creative marketing communications and public relations firm based in San Francisco, California, that helps local and global companies create, build, and launch brands. Recognized as one of the most effective marketing firms in the wine industry, CCA is also known for success in the gourmet, natural, and organic food and beverage categories, as well as for top shelf spirits and luxury products marketing. In 2013, CCA formed a strategic alliance with Cornerstone Communications Ltd in New York City to better provide clients with contacts and a network in two of the most important media and wine markets in the country.     ###
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Charles Communications is looking for a Fall intern!

28 July, 2014

    About Charles Communications Associates: We are an independent creative marketing communications firm focused on strategic marcomm both new and traditional who helps local and global companies create, build and launch brands. Recognized as one of the most effective firms particularly in the international wine industry, CCA is also known for success in the gourmet, natural and organic food and beverage categories, as well as for top shelf spirits and luxury products marketing. Realizing the constantly growing potential of new media as marketing platforms, Charles Communications develops and executes new media strategies for clients driven by an in-depth understanding and experience with social network sites, blogs and other platforms.   Job Description: We are looking for a part time intern (3 days a week) who can work at our San Francisco office and who will jump in and join our fast paced team. We need a smart, detail oriented, resourceful individual who is self-motivated, intrepid, enthusiastic, and willing to learn. The internship start date is Monday, August 18th and will last for 3 months (or more if there’s a good fit).   Responsibilities: ·      Be familiar with CCA’s clients and our general marketing strategies ·      Assist with CCA’s social media channels ·      Work on client projects as needed such as event support, social media, research, press releases and more ·      Assist in sending product sample sends to media ·      General office assistance, phones, meetings, errands    Qualifications: ·      Familiarity with Macs & Excel in particular ·      Up-to-date on the latest social media trends and social media savvy in a variety of channels: Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, Pinterest, Tumblr, etc. ·      Timeliness, attention to detail and accuracy are critical to this position ·      Good written & verbal communications skills are essential to this role ·      Ability to work well with others while also running with projects independently at times ·      Knowledge of the food & wine industry is a plus ·      Previous PR experience or communications education is a plus ·      Highly motivated and eager to learn   Compensation: This internship offers school credit only. Several of our internships in the past have resulted in full time employment.    Food & wine knowledge a major edge for this position.  To apply, please submit your resume and cover letter, along with the answers the following questions to jordan@charlescomm.com:     1.     What most interests you about working in Public Relations? 2.     What are the top 5 media outlets you read in your free time and why? 3.     What is the most recent memorable food and/or wine experience and what made it so?
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