PUBLISHED December 22nd, 2020 06:00 am
Virtual travel has taken flight in 2020 with everything from zoo livestreams to 360° monument tours, and even the oenophiles aren’t being left out. If you’ve missed your tipsy tours around the finest cellar doors in France, there’s a new platform which captures something of that winery-hopping magic.
The first of its kind, VIVANT is an interactive wine platform which streams immersive experiences live from wine regions round the globe. Its founder, Michael Baum, hails from an unusual background in both tech and tipples – this ex-Silicon Valley entrepreneur moved to Burgundy in 2014 and bought the three-centuries-old winery Château de Pommard, leading its transition to biodynamics. VIVANT is the lovechild of his passion for sustainable vino, with a focus on responsible producers and natural wines.
The platform offers members a range of live experiences each week, from informative lessons on grape varieties and terroirs to expert-led tasting sessions. Each experience involves a chance to chat with winemakers blazing a trail in sustainability, and comes complete with Experience Kits of wine flights delivered to your doorstep.
As you hone your vino knowledge, rack up wine IQ and tasting points, with a members’ leaderboard thrown in for some friendly competition. And if you’ve discovered any favourites, you can hop over to the online shop to purchase from anywhere in the world. In short, it’s the closest we can get to a wine tour without leaving our armchairs.
For now, the lineup only features three French wine regions: Bordeaux, Burgundy, and the Loire Valley. You’ll find producers both under-the-radar and celebrated, including the likes of Château Guiraud – an 1855 1er Cru Classé and the first organic estate in Bordeaux – and Domaine Jo Landron, helmed by the famously moustachioed pioneer of organic winemaking in the Loire. New experiences from Alsace and Champagne are slated to launch this December, and wine regions in Italy, Germany, and Spain will join the fray in 2021.
Annual membership starts from S$239, and VIVANT has pledged 1% of all membership fees and wine purchases toward funding research on responsible winemaking. If that’s the price of a virtual vacay, we’re seriously tempted.
Tipple up with VIVANT here. Annual membership begins from S$239 per year.