Monday, January 21, 2019

The Mind Of A Sommelier: A New Series

I know plenty of wine lovers who select a restaurant based, at least in part, on the nature of their wine list. They'll peruse the restaurant's website, hoping to find a copy of the wine list online so they can scan it, to determine whether there is anything of interest or not. If the list isn't online, they'll speak to their friends and others, trying to gather information about the nature of the wine list. If they find the wine list isn't particularly interesting, they may decide to dine elsewhere.

As such, a restaurant's sommelier can play a vital role in a restaurant's success. I'm using the term "sommelier" at its most basic definition, referring to the person in charge of a restaurant's wine program, even if they are not a "certified" sommelier. They might refer to themselves as a Wine Director, Wine Steward, or some similar term, but I'm collecting all of those people under the "sommelier" designation for the purpose of my new series.

I want to delve more deeply into the minds of local sommeliers, to better understand their decisions when creating wine lists, and to know more about the inspirations, challenges and joys of their work. I want to showcase some of the best local wine lists, and highlight some of the most intriguing and delicious wines on those lists. Hopefully this will also help my fellow wine lovers decide which restaurants to visit.

I appreciate and admire those sommeliers who create an intriguing wine list, one which consists of excellent and interesting wines, those which pair well with a restaurant's cuisine. I hope to gain even more admiration for their profession through analyzing their decisions, processes, and challenges.

In the coming weeks, I'll start posting interviews with a number of local sommeliers, allow my readers and I to delve into their minds. I hope these interviews are well received, and if so, the series will continue. If you enjoy this series, or even if you don't, please let me know. With your feedback, I can hopefully make this endeavor even better.

And if you're a sommelier and you would like to participate in this series, please contact me and I'll explain what's involved, a rather easy process.

Interviews:
Jesse Eslin of The Table At Season to Taste (Cambridge)
Bruno Marini of Chopps American Bar & Grill (Burlington)
Christopher Williams of Harvest (Cambridge)
Sandy Block of Legal Harborside (Boston)
Jose Luis Betancur of Tuscan Kitchen-Seaport (Boston)
Leo Keka of Alba Prime Steak + Seafood (Quincy)
Peter Nelson of Puritan & Co. (Cambridge)

1 comment:

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