Cropped shot of a group of young friends toasting during a dinner celebration at a restaurant
In-person red wine occasions are having a renewal once again. We have actually missed them throughout the pandemic and enjoy to see them return. They may be little events for friends or group structure occasions for significant services, however the best of them leave customers winning nuggets of precious wine knowledge.
So, I just recently took a seat with a master of white wine events: Michael Green. The New Yorker literally matured in the wine company and worked for the now-defunct Gourmet Magazine for many years heading up trade and consumer education. All responses have actually been edited and condensed for clarity.
Liza B. Zimmerman (L.B.Z.): What made you end up being a wine teacher?
Michael Green has been a white wine educator for years.
Michael Green (M.G.): I began working in the red wine industry at the age of 6 when I started to accompany by father to work at Acker Wines: the oldest white wine store in America. He worked there for forty years and I would work with him on weekends. I never thought that I would enter the occupation or become a white wine educator. I simply wanted to spend time with my father.
In my late teens, and early twenties, I recognized that many people do not know much about white wine beyond it being fermented grape juice. While at the shop I was frequently asked the exact same concerns: how do you taste white wine, what makes this red wine various from another, when is a red wine all set to drink. I wanted to make individuals feel more comfy with a beverage that I am so passionate about. So, at the age of 22 I started a wine school.
L.B. Z.: What do you like about your profession?
M.G.: I am a white wine edu-tainer and I want to make individuals more comfy and positive with wine.
L.B. Z.: Who have you dealt with in the past?
M.G.: Most of the work that I do now is with corporations. My client list includes Fortune 500 companies and startups.
L.B. Z.: What did you study to get your red wine knowledge?
M.G.: On-the-job training. When I remained in my early twenties, I ended up being a red wine purchaser and was buying Bordeaux futures and conference and purchasing wines from the leading manufacturers. I was blessed to be working with some fantastic agents and I inform my students that there is no much better way to find out about red wine then by opening a bottle and tasting it.
L.B. Z.: What do you suggest your customers read if they wonder about wine?
M.G.: There are many books about white wine. For newbies, I would recommend White wine on the World by Kevin Zraly and The Wine Bible by Karen McNeil. If you want to get a bit geeky about wine and you have an interest in history, I suggest you immediately pick up White wine Wars and Wine Wars Two written by Mike Veseth. My favorite wine book is Experiences on the Wine Path by Kermit Lynch.
L.B. Z.: What did you make with Premium and how did your events impact the publication’s white wine protection and bottom line?
Chef Gray Kunz, owner of Cafe Gray during Premium Publication Celebrates Release of the March 2004 New … [+]
WireImage for Gourmet Magazine
M.G.: I was the wine consultant to Premium Magazine for nineteen years (till the magazine regretfully closed). I worked on the publishing side of the magazine, not the editorial side. So, if you promoted the pages of Premium, I would frequently produce a wine, food, or travel experience for the advertiser’s customers
L.B. Z.: How do you organize events? Are they prepared around a wine, a food pairing, an educational program?
M.G.: It always starts with the corporate customer and what their goals are. It might be a seated white wine tasting, a stand-up occasion, a red wine dinner, or a journey to Napa or Bordeaux.Wine glasses in
a row. Buffet table celebration of white wine tasting. Night life, celebration and … [+]
L.B. Z.: What is the perfect size for an event and why?
M.G.: From my perspective, there is not a perfect size. I create red wine experiences for groups of twelve and for groups of one thousand or more. My discussion style is very theatrical– I finished from New York’s popular High School for the Performing Arts– and varies depending upon group size.
L.B. Z.: How do you evaluate your audience’s level of red wine savvy?
M.G.: Instinct. I believe the statistic is something like 20 percent of the American population consumes over 80 percent of white wine, so I usually begin of by gauging the audience with a few concerns. My discussion style is story-driven. It is connective. So even if people understand the details currently, I provide it in a fresh way.
L.B. Z.: The length of time should a red wine education program last?
Flat-lay of red, increased and white wine in glasses and corkscrews over grey concrete background, top … [+]
I find that virtual tastings are best when they are 60 to 75 minutes. In-person white wine tastings work best when they are 90 minutes to 2 hours. White wine dinners last 2 to 3 hours.
L.B. Z.: What are some of your favorite styles you have used in the past?
M.G.: I do region-, grape- and producer-focused occasions and some themes are Le Tour de France, Made in the USA, the Colors of Spain and Italy in a Glass.
With my concentrate on business America, I now focus on themes consisting of Great White wines by Fantastic Females, Leadership in a Glass and A Taste of Diversity. I also have teambuilding experience called You’ve Bought a Winery! Now What?
L.B. Z.: What is the best compliment a guest ever paid you?
M.G.: A guest commented that, “Listening to Michael Green speak about wine is like experiencing a sensory surge!”
L.B. Z.: How did white wine occasions alter during the pandemic, and do you expect these trends to last?
M.G.: Virtual, virtual and virtual. And this is not disappearing. The nice aspect of virtual occasions is that you can unite clients and workers who are not able to be there in person.