The other day, I was wine tasting in Portland with Chuck Humble, a friend of mine. In general, it was a great trip -- I wound up coming home with several cases of delicious wine and had some great conversations with wine makers and wine literati in the Portland area.

But one event stood out in particular. At the first winery we went to, Stoller Vineyards, I fell in love with their 2002 Chardonnay. (It's unoaked, and just had a wonderful soft vanilla, peach flavor that would make it go well with many things and even be good by itself, which is how I'm enjoying it right now.) So I got in line to purchase it. Well, the vineyard's computer system was a little finicky and they didn't have a lot of the 2002 and the guy in front of me couldn't make up his mind. So I was standing in line for about 20 minutes. Finally, with Chuck and my wife waiting for me, I dropped out of line and tore up my order form and we humped to the next winery.

A week later, Elizabeth Beekley from Stoller emailed me saying that she'd heard I'd had a bad time in line and wanted to send me a bottle of wine to make it up. And today it arrived.

It would have been great if the problem never happened, but problems happen, and Stoller made it right without me even saying anything. That's an example of good customer service is.