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Friday, May 22, 2009

Adore Vino? Love Facebook? It Could Land You a Sweet Gig with Sonoma Winemaker

Posted By on Fri, May 22, 2009 at 1:09 PM

click to enlarge The winning "lifestyle correspondent" will spend six months touting Murphy-Goode.
  • The winning "lifestyle correspondent" will spend six months touting Murphy-Goode.

Calling all Twitter addicts with a thing for wine: A Sonoma County winemaker wants to pay you a boatload of money simply to hang out, sip Zinfandel, and send tweets. Seriously.

Okay, so it calls for a bit more than that. Last month, Geyserville winemaker Murphy-Goode launched the search for a PR post it's calling "A Really Goode Job." The six-month gig starts in August, and will require the winner to wax enthusiastic on Facebook and via YouTube vids about the sheer awesomeness of wandering the vineyards while learning the ins and outs of winemaking from -- you guessed it -- Murphy-Goode. The best part: It pays the kind of scratch you figure most "lifestyle correspondents" would be happy to make in two years. The 10K monthly salary comes with free housing (M-G's Web site describes is as a "deluxe private home in the heart of Wine Country"). You even get free airfare.

Think you might qualify? Here's how the winery breaks down the duties: "We're looking for someone (maybe you) who really knows how to use Web 2.0 and Facebook and blogs and social media and YouTube and all sorts of good stuff like that -- to tell the world about our wines and the place where we live: the Sonoma County Wine Country."

Winery PR director Mark Osmun told SFoodie the search was inspired by Tourism Queensland's Best Job in the World campaign earlier this year. The Australian organization launched a worldwide search for a blogger to live on an island in the Great Barrier Reef for six months while touting its glories. "Someone said, 'Why can't we do it here?,'" Osmun recalled. As of today, Murphy-Goode had posted 170-plus video applications on its job search site. Osman said 648 had been submitted, but most had been disqualified due to ommissions or violations of entry guidelines. The initial first cut will be made by an outside HR firm Osmun wouldn't name to avoid subjecting them to direct pleas from eager applicants. They'll whittle the final list down to 50; of those, Murphy-Goode will pick the best 10. "Those 10 will come in and interact with the winery staff face-to-face," Osmun said.

As a result, personality -- not wine chops -- are crucial. Sounds easy, right? Except that, scrolling through the video applications on the job Web site so far, it's clear that personality is no slam-dunk. Watch the candidates' one-minute video pitches to see for yourself, maybe even post your own (the application deadline is June 19). Vote for your faves (for fun only, according to Osmun). Our picks? In a perfect world, Casey Boshae of Sherman Oaks (sporting M-G's trademark Viking horns to do bad karaoke on "Red, Red Wine") would be a shoo-in. SF's own Justin Smith, who shows off his bathroom winery and closet cellar, is a close contender.

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