I’ve personally marveled at those people who become Master Sommeliers, because they not only have to be able to identify vitis from all over the world, but they’ve also got to know the spirits world really well, too… And cigars… (Sorry, tobacco was my father’s death, so I can’t even go there). Their knowledge is broad and sweeping, with advance course studies. They’re ever so devoted to the passion, and are simply remarkable to me.
I began my wine career the same year Catherine Fallis did, in 1993… Here we are 18 years later, and have both been very busy.
Catherine Fallis MS, ACWP (Advanced Certified Wine Professional) of Planet Grape, the grape goddess®, is one of those people whom I greatly admire. I was reminded of that when she recently asked for my endorsement on LinkedIn. What a no-brainer… are you kidding me?!
After writing my endorsement for her, I immediately wrote back to her, wanting to follow-up for my addition to my “Wine Writer” page. I simply wrote: “Would you like to be one of my featured writers on Wine-Blog.org? If you’re game, I’ve attached the Q&A. Would love to add you to my site.” For Wine-blog now, it’s almost stream of consciousness during my day… I get an Email or send one, then realize this person isn’t on Wine-Blog, yet… it was probably just a matter of time.
If you live in the San Francisco Bay Area, and you’re in need of a wine educator, speaker, or MC, contact Catherine. She has a great command of her subject matter and her audiences adore her. (It’s probably her mesmerizing green eyes!) Also, she’s now got a litany of books that she written
I’m grabbing the bio from Catherine’s site:
Catherine Fallis is the fifth woman in the world to have earned the title of Master Sommelier, and the first person in the world to have also earned the Advanced Certified Wine Professional title from the Culinary Institute of America. She is Founder and President of planet grape® LLC, a wine consulting firm providing education, content, and sommelier services.
Fallis is Contributing Editor for Sommelier Journal, a frequent contributor to the San Francisco Chronicle, San Francisco Examiner, and numerous others, and co-author most recently of Great Boutique Wines You Can Buy Online (Silverback Books). She is an adjunct instructor at the Culinary Institute of America and the Professional Culinary Institute, a frequent speaker, event host, and educator for corporations, consumers, and the trade, and is one of a handful of female professional sabreurs in the world. She opens Champagne with a sword in a dazzling 3-minute theatrical performance.
You go, girl! I had a saber send off from Robert Mondavi Winery… I get it!
With that same kind of brevity, Catherine answered my questions:
[Q] Many wine writers also have a day job. If wine isn’t your job, what is and for whom?
[CATHERINE] It is.
[Q] When did you start writing about wine?
[CATHERINE] In 1993.
[Q] What prompted you to start writing about wine?
[CATHERINE] My love of the subject and my dream to become a famous wine writer.
[Q] What aspect(s) of wine do you most enjoy covering?
[CATHERINE] Lifestyle – the enjoyment of it.
[Q] How has your job changed since you’ve started?
[CATHERINE] The platforms are ever evolving, which is great because now the playing fields are more equal for producers as well as consumers.
[Q] What’s the most memorable wine you’ve ever tasted?
[CATHERINE] Philipponat Clos des Goisses Champagne, Trimbach Riesling Cuvee Frederic Emile, Chateau Cheval Blanc.
[Q] What’s your favorite variety?
[CATHERINE] Only one favorite? Impossible.
[Q] Do you believe that there are better quality, lower priced wines today, than in past vintages?
[CATHERINE] Absolutely – more than ever.
[Q] What’s your favorite innovation in the wine industry over the past few years?
[Q] What’s your favorite food and wine pairing?
[CATHERINE] Champagne and popcorn with truffle oil and shaved parmigiana reggiano.
[Q] What are your interests outside of the wine business?
[CATHERINE] The outdoors, the arts, food.
[Q] Who inspires you (wine business or outside of it, doesn’t matter)?
[CATHERINE] My son. My grandmother. Kevin Zraly. Harriet Lembeck. Jancis Robinson. My students.
[Q] For what would you like to be remembered?
[CATHERINE] Bringing wine down to earth.
Well… there you go, a grape goddess bringing wine down to earth. That’s actually exactly what we all needed, and 18 years ago, Catherine and I set out on the same path!