Henry Butler and Cassie Gould
The Butlers Wine Cellar, Brighton
In a nutshell: There’s always something to say about wine. So why not record your conversational musings – be they general, educational, personal or a bit bonkers – and share them in a podcast?
Tell us more.
Cassie: “I wanted to do something different to what other independents were doing at the time . Initially the idea was educational and we thought we’d discuss wine as merchants, but without obviously pushing sales. We wanted to produce something that customers could listen to and learn in an enjoyable way and maybe contact us afterwards.”
Does it take a lot of skill and technical know-how?
Henry: “We just sit next to Cassie’s phone, press record and have a conversation. We do it in one take and there’s not a lot of preparation, which is probably apparent. We don’t want it to feel like a job. If we had to sit and take it all apart, I would lose the love for it really.
“We use a service called Anchor.fm. We upload one podcast there and then it distributes to all the different podcast channels that are available, including Spotify, Apple and Google.
“I want to just put it out there and if there are a few mistakes, it doesn’t matter. The intention behind it is always good and honest and some will be better than others. The only challenge is not swearing and sometimes, if we come in and we’ve got work stress, suddenly you have to put your game face on and be all chipper.”
You broadcasted regularly before Covid and now you’re making a comeback.
Cassie: “Lots of people have been asking us to do it. We had a rep from Vivino saying that they all listened to it during lockdown, and why weren’t we doing more? At the start it was a case of let’s just see how this goes, and we didn’t really expect anyone to listen to it. But over the last year people have said how much they’ve missed it. We have seen stats showing all the different countries in the world who are listening – the numbers are small but there are people listening in America and New Zealand.”
Is there an ideal episode length?
Henry: “The one we’ve just recorded drifted into an easy 25 minutes, likewise for the episode with Tom Surgey from Ridgeview Estate. We love Tom to bits and if we get together then it’s hard to keep the chat to a manageable time frame, so that one rather ran away with us.”
Cassie: “We were doing some that were five to 10 minutes but people were saying they preferred ones that were half an hour because they can put it on in the car.”
Does it help that as wine merchants neither of you are exactly shy?
Henry: “Cassie is probably the most dramatic person I’ve ever met, but if you put her in front of people, it’s not her favourite thing. I can’t do very many things well but I can present. I didn’t always used to be able to, but I’ve done so many tastings over the years … it’s practice. You can tell if someone is reading off a script or they don’t really believe in what they’re saying, but if you have fun and know your subject matter then you’ve got a good chance of it working.”
Have you got a schedule for the year ahead?
Cassie: “We’ll try and base them around up and coming events. In June we’re doing a Portuguese promotion so our podcast will be Portugal-focused. We’ll fit it in around our calendar and fill in the gaps with whatever is exciting at the time.”
Henry: “If opportunity and inspiration strike we can do a few five-minute ones here and there. I don’t want to promise anything, but there’s always things to explain and discuss.”
Henry and Cassie win a WBC gift box containing some premium drinks and a box of chocolates.
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