Twitter is launching a charitable side project and wine label to benefit child literacy in the developing world, underscoring the company culture’s deep appreciation for wine.
Called Fledgling Wine, this is Twitter’s first big non-profit campaign — they will sell Pinot Noir and Chardonnay and donate $5 from every bottle to San Francisco’s Room to Read.
From what we hear, Twitter employees are avid wine connoisseurs, well-versed in vintages and varietals at company parties. In fact, the company’s director of search Doug Cook launched a wine search engine called Able Grape last year as a “labor of love” and writes occasionally for Wine Business Magazine. He wins extra nerd points for leading a search engine optimization talk at a wine bloggers conference this year.
So the company’s jaunt into wine-making isn’t all that surprising. Room to Read, the non-profit receiving all the donations from the project, is the brainchild of former Microsoft executive John Wood. It establishes libraries and promotes literacy in countries like Bangladesh, Cambodia and India.
To produce the line, Twitter’s working with DIY winery Crushpad, which is less than a 10-minute drive away from the startup’s headquarters in San Francisco. The wine is $20 a bottle, and it might be pretty decent considering the company culture’s fussiness over quality drink.
(By the way, if you’re a wine enthusiast, be sure to check out Cook’s Able Grape search engine. It’s not quite Google — no spartan interface for search results. It’s more for research and learning. You can dig deeper by year, region, grape, producer, tasting notes and on and on. It catalogs 41,000 web sites and 21 million pages. Try looking up Bordeaux vintage reports from 2005, producers of the Domprobst vineyard in Graach, or anything about a 1964 Badia a Coltibuono. Yes, it gets that specific. Plus it should give you an idea of how narrow and powerful Twitter search could get as the amount of data they collect grows.)