Alyssa Rapp – Founder of Bottlenotes

[quote style=”boxed”]Keep a sense of balance in your life by working out daily, no matter how busy or stressed you get as an entrepreneur.[/quote]

Alyssa J. Rapp, is the founder and CEO of Bottlenotes, Inc. Bottlenotes is the leading new media company in the wine category dedicated to educating and entertaining wine enthusiasts via four primary channels: email newsletters (The Daily Sip®, received daily by over 150,000 wine enthusiasts by email and 140,000 on Facebook) and the Weekly Pint (which launched in January 2012), interactive events, such as the Around the World in 80 Sips® national event series, social media platforms, and iPhone applications.

Alyssa is the author of Bottlenotes Guide to Wine: Around the World in 80 Sips (Adam’s Media, October 2008) and frequently contributes to digital publications, including and The Huffington Post. She has been a guest on The TODAY Show, Fox Business Network, The Rachael Ray Show, ABC, and NBC as an expert on wine and entrepreneurship.

Alyssa earned a B.A. in political science and the history of art from Yale University in 2000 and an M.B.A. from Stanford University’s Graduate School of Business in 2005. Alyssa was named as one of Inc.’s “30 Under 30” coolest entrepreneurs in America, one of’s “10 Sexiest CEOs” in America, and one of the Top 100 Most Influential People in the US Wine Industry (#23). Alyssa serves on the board of trustees for Hubbard Street Dance Chicago, the country’s preeminent contemporary dance company, and on the executive board of Spark Program, a non-profit that provides transformative apprenticeships for middle school students. When not on United Airlines, Alyssa and her husband, Hal Morris, are based in Palo Alto, California.

What are you working on right now?

Strategic partnerships for Bottlenotes, Inc.!

Where did the idea for Bottlenotes come from?

I founded the company many moons ago with the goal of helping to demystify wine for new and intermediate wine enthusiasts nationwide. Our original business model involved sending wine that was tailored to peoples’ personal tastes, using patent-pending matching technology via our wine club model. Today, the business is a new media company, where we educate and entertain consumers through email newsletters, interactive events and social media, and get paid by brands for access to our audience across platforms. But the goal remains the same: remove the snobbery from wine (and now craft beer as well), increase people’s comfort with and knowledge of the products, and put people in social environments (digitally or in person) so they can share and make recommendations to their friends.

What does your typical day look like?

I wake up at 6:00 a.m., work out, eat breakfast, go to the office, work all day, leave the office for a meeting or bite to eat with my husband or a friend, and try to get some “R & R” after 8:00 p.m. when I’m at home.

How do you bring ideas to life?

Through great team members who have shared visions and values, and who take ownership of pieces of the puzzle and push them forward. I also bring ideas to life through an endless amount of hard work.

What’s one trend that really excites you?

Great team members who have shared visions and values, and who take ownership of pieces of the puzzle and push them forward.

If you were to start again, what would you do differently?

I would avoid undercapitalization and the worst economy in 90 years!

As an entrepreneur, what is the one thing you do over and over and recommend everyone else do?

Keep a sense of balance in your life by working out daily, no matter how busy or stressed you get as an entrepreneur.

If you could change one thing in the world, what would it be and how would you go about it?

I would make seed capital easier for entrepreneurs to access, and I would make growth capital easier for early stage companies to access.

What is the one book that you recommend our community should read and why?

Atlas Shrugged. No matter what your political views are (and mine are not Ayn Rand’s), the idealism, heroism and vision demonstrated by the characters in this book are an inspiration for any entrepreneur or executive.

Who is your hero?

My mother.


Alyssa Rapp on Twitter: @alyssarapp
Bottlenotes on Twitter: @bottlenotes
The Daily Sip on Twitter: @thedailysip
Bottlenotes on Facebook:
Bottlenotes’ website: