Hardy Wallace: Living The Dream

When you attend this year’s Design Bloggers conference, you’ll have a chance to meet one of the most amazing success stories in the world of blogging – the incredible Hardy Wallace. Hardy will share with you how he used video to realize his dreams, and how you can use video in your own blog to realize yours.

Five years ago, Hardy Wallace started an Atlanta based wine blog – Dirty South Wine. With no goals or direction besides to just enjoy writing and shooting videos about wine, Dirty South Wine’s out of left field tone gained a loyal following of consumers and wine professionals.

In early 2009, Hardy was laid off from his Tech career, and decided to fully focus on wine. “I had no idea what the hell I was going to do, but I wasn’t going back to tech”. Two months later, Murphy-Goode Winery launched their search for “A Really Goode Job” aka the best wine job in the world – a six month stint living in Sonoma County, and being paid $10k a month to blog about life at Murphy-Goode. Out of thousands of applicants, Hardy was chosen as the winner and helped launch the era of social media in the often antiquated wine industry.

At the end of the six month period, Hardy left Murphy-Goode to help grow a fledgling winery in Sonoma called “The Natural Process Alliance” or “The NPA”. With his help in marketing and social media, Wallace helped grow and take the almost unknown winery and gained massive attention nationwide with stories on NPR, CBS, the Washington Post, AP, and winning the 2010 Green Winery Award, and being named the 6th Hottest Brand by Wine Business.Com.

While at The NPA, Hardy found a love for winemaking and began making his own wines with a former blogging buddy (Rowdy Food) under the label “Dirty and Rowdy Wine Co.” Hardy had found his calling –  “I fell in love with winemaking- The process of taking something from vine to glass is something that transcends anything I could have imagined… It was in this process where if I found exactly what I was meant to do.”

After a year and a half at The NPA, Hardy left to gain more education. His next stop was to learn the farming side of the wine industry, where he spent a summer farming his own block on Shake Ridge Vineyard in Amador County (a source he uses in Dirty and Rowdy), and then to gain more winemaking and cellar experience with the legendary Ehren Jordan at Failla Wines. His first release of Dirty and Rowdy Wines will be early 2012.

Hardy’s journey is one from daydreamer, to dream job, to a job you dream about.