Hi, I’m Nicole and I’m so pleased you stopped by.
I am a Melbourne-based wine, food and travel writer. My day-job is in the wine industry and I hold a Wine & Spirit Education Trust (WSET) Diploma – the precursor qualification to the Master of Wine. I recently became a WSET Certified Educator and one of my favourite ways to spend an evening is delving into the mysteries of wine with a group of wine enthusiasts.
A viewing of my LinkedIn profile will reveal that I am very familiar with the career mobility that is becoming the hallmark of my generation. I have worked as a Pharmacist, a professional Actor and in various roles in the wine industry – training, hospitality, retail and sales. It is not unusual for me to do most of the above at the same time. I believe in chasing your dreams and that expectations can always be exceeded.
If you haven’t guessed so far, I love wine. I certainly wasn’t born into this world though. My father doesn’t drink and my mother buys her wine from shop-a-dockets. During my first degree, while my mates were smashing through jugs of XXXX (I lived in Brisbane at the time), I was negotiating the perils of uni-pub wine lists. Most of my decisions were made based on label design but I gradually began to identify which grape varieties I liked. After uni, while on a holiday in Melbourne, I decided to visit the Yarra Valley and found my way to a cellar door wine tasting – I was hooked. The next few years saw me basing all my holidays around visiting wine regions. A few years later I found myself back in Melbourne as an auditioning actor. Needing a night job, I stumbled my way into a job making cocktails in a tiki bar – with no experience whatsoever. Pharmacy turned out to provide some solid translatable skills so within a few months I was topping cocktails sales.
My life changed at 3am one Sunday morning. Being a tiki bar, all our drinks were topped with pieces of fresh fruit, which often made their way onto the floor. These bits of fruit would jam the cleaner’s vacuum so during pack-down we would have to pick up half-chewed pieces of pineapple. That morning I remarked wryly that I always thought my life would amount to more than this. One of my colleagues asked me simply “What do you love?”. I replied, without qualification or analysis (unusual for me) “Wine, I love wine”. To which he responded “Just go do wine then, you are in Melbourne!”. By 4am I had returned home, googled “Wine courses Melbourne” and sent off an email to enrol in my first course.
I want more people to enjoy wine. What I hope to create here is some inspiration to try new things. I also want to promote positive attitudes around food. Great food is one of the most achievable simple pleasures in life. There is no such thing as ‘bad’ food and ‘good’ food, especially when the ‘bad’ ones taste so wonderfully good. My approach is to eat nutrient-rich, healthy, delicious foods most of the time, so that when I want salted caramel surrounded by peanut butter, baked into a cake and dipped in chocolate, I can enjoy every morsel. It’s all about balance.
What you will find here is:
- Wine talk that I hope will encourage to learn more about wine and explore new and fantastic varieties and types.
- Uncomplicated, delicious recipes – some full of nutrients and some just gloriously indulgent.
- Reviews of places I enjoy eating and drinking.
I am a chatter, a communicator, a connector so please hang about and leave a comment when you read my posts. I want to get to know you.