This week marks my 'debut' as the 'wine-guy' at our northern Twin Cities stores, Northgate Liquors, in Blaine and Andover. Though I've already been there for three months now, which feels like much shorter, I have finally settled in and started to grow with the company. Doug's Dozen is the theme of our weekly email that comes out tomorrow where I pick 12 of my favorite wines we carry in the store. I will be pouring and talking about them at a tasting on Friday and Saturday nights. It's quite flattering to have the responsibility and respect that I've been given and I'm gracious to the ownership and management for that opportunity. I picked wines across the spectrum of price, flavor, and location, from a cheap Portugese Vinho Verde, to a Tarry French Vacqueyras, a fresh box of Italian Garganega, and a pricier Oregon Pinot (Penner-Ash where I got my winemaking start). I'm really excited to get people's opinions and showcase some unique and value driven wines that many people are unfamiliar with. It's been great getting to meet many people who have been in the local industry for years and share stories on our experiences; many of my friends who have relatively little experience with wine have also enjoyed the abundance of wine open at our place and the conversation and learning that comes with it. I don't quite know how I fit in to the bigger picture of the wine industry yet, as I am STILL getting a foothold, but as each day passes I thrive on the new experiences and opportunities that come my way.
As my Brazilian neighbor would say, Saude!