Yuri Vanetik was named California Lottery Commissioner by Governor Arnold Schwarzenegger. Before that, the celebrity governor appointed the Ukrainian-American lawyer to serve on the California Commission on Criminal Justice. Vanetik is a politician and Washington insider who occasionally lobbies Congress and represents foreign business and political leaders — some of whom have become lifelong friends. But with all the people he’s met and all the places he’s seen—traveling the Americas, Europe, Asia and the Caucasus—Vanetik says his most fascinating encounters are with people he’s met through a shared love of wine.
As a wine collector for over 22 years, Yuri Vanetik has tasted wines in Israel, Greece, Cyprus, Ukraine, Poland, Turkey, Moldova, Germany, China, the Republic of Georgia, Canada and about 20 different regions you think about wine.
His wine prowess is no secret – once featured in The Rob Report – but aside from the occasional magazine interview, Vanetik has a lot to say about his wine preferences, the places he’s been and the relationships he nurtures through each other. Keep it private. Passion for wine.
Vanetik says wine not only allows him to find new business projects, but also helps him solve complex problems for clients.
“Whether I’m meeting with a presidential candidate from a troubled Eastern European country or a corporate executive in the south of France, discussions tend to get off topic,” the lawyer and political strategist said with a smile.
“The reason is simple,” he explained. “Many alphas who are looking for meaning and want to have an impact on the world around them drink and collect wine. It attracts curious and enthusiastic people. I remember meeting an influential religious leader in Israel once. He was stern and difficult It was deeply rooted, incomprehensible, and the negotiations were fruitless until the topic of Israeli wine came up.”
Vanetik vividly recalls his business “opponent” lovingly recommending a 2016 Gva’ot Masada Bordeaux-style blend, lovingly describing its chocolate ganache and cigar tobacco flavors, as if in When hinting this blend to a close friend, there is a tangible shift in energy that can age better than a Bordeaux red.
“We got in touch immediately.” Waneqi smiled thoughtfully.
“Discovering wine with someone or sharing a passion for a region or even a vintage is like discussing your puppy playing with your grandchildren,” Vanetik continues. “People are smiling, their vigilance is lessened.”
But to earn a place at the most exclusive table, a love of wine alone won’t completely eliminate it. You must have the taste and knowledge of a good sommelier. Vanetik makes it clear – you measure by the type of alcohol you drink.
“I was recently discussing terms with a potential client from Eastern Europe,” recalls Vanetik. “He promised that if our partnership was successful, I would receive a case of 1992 Screaming Eagle, a rare Californian hit and very expensive for many. The man boasted of drinking a ‘Screagle’ of businessmen were amazed at my appreciation for Domaine de la Romanée-Conti or DRC for short, and began to see me as an equal rather than a service provider.”
Vanetik asked me if I knew about the DRC. I do not. But don’t worry, I’m not alone. Domaine de la Romanée-Conti – whose “entry-level” wines Corton cost over 1,000 euros and Monopole La Tache over 4,000 euros – selectively opens its doors to exclusive importers or the best wine journalists and produces only annually thousands of bottles in order to maintain its strict quality standards.
“If you want to stop at the winery, don’t waste your time because you’re not going in,” he smirked. “Ironically, the adjacent street is called Rue de Temps Perdu, the street that lost time.”
Wines like this become legendary. Ownership itself is a provider of status. For this reason, some buyers do not intend to drink, but collect or buy for investment – often to the dismay of producers.
“Wine in business can make you equal and can turn competitors into collaborators,” the winemaker told me, describing the “old school” of Eastern European businessmen and bureaucrats who often see professionals as “graduates” Concierge” level. ”
For the true few who share the passion and palate for fine wine…its story and history…the joy of sharing it with others…the culmination of collecting it…. .. when they find another, it breaks down walls and builds bonds…it’s the great equalizer that turns “doing business” into a cultural experience.
“I remember visiting Moldova and meeting various business leaders there,” shared the avid storyteller. “The merchant who became a client took me on a tour of the famous cellars and told me about the historical origins of his favorite wine, Negru de Purcari. He told me a story about how baptism was established in 1827, when Tsar Nicol La I issued a special decree to establish the first professional winery in Purcari, Bessarabia…”
“Some time ago, I was negotiating the acquisition of a hotel in the Caucasus. The opposing lawyer – an Austrian lawyer – started talking about Georgian wine and how the unique winemaking method of Qvevri is the oldest known method of wine production… Well, we chatted for a while and it turned out that he has a collection of rare California wines that is deeply liked and rated by wine critic Robert Parker. A rare concoction called Sine Qua Non… The partner melted with excitement when he learned that I also had his favorite wine collection. Now we recommend businesses to each other.”
This love of wine…it opened huge business doors for Ukrainian Americans. It has always been a superior negotiating tool and a way to show gratitude and respect to those who have resilient resources and are not easily impressed.
“Wine in business transcends culture,” he said.