Sunday, October 9, 2011
Yes, I'm a teacher by day, moonlighting as a sommelier at night. Sometimes people give me a funny look, and I know they are wondering if educating students and enjoying wine may actually be a conflict of interests. However, for several reasons, I say no! The biggest reason it isn't a conflict is because I don't necessarily think of myself as a sommelier that is a wine expert. (In fact, the more I learn about wine, the more I know I don't know, and the more I want to learn about wine.) Instead, I consider myself a wine educator. My favorite job as a sommelier is to teach other people about wine. For years, many in my generation have been intimidated or scared of wine. We grew up drinking beer, and though there is absolutely nothing wrong with this, it's left many people nervous about looking silly when consuming wine. I love to take this "mystery" out of wine for drinkers by teaching them what the terms mean, how fermentation works, and why labels say what they say. This knowledge of wine takes the unknown element out of wine, making it more likely that these now-educated people will drink more wine! It's a win-win situation for everyone involved. Consumers know more about wine and will enjoy wine more, and I get to keep teaching about one of my favorite subjects! So, Tuesday, when I am teaching a section of my Wine 101 class, there is no conflict to be found, just more wine lovers waiting to learn!