I often wonder how I ever got involved in the wine world. My first ten years at Kings Market (Valmark Inc.) were spent working on the freight crew, and wine was one of the farthest things from my mind. I grew up with my single mother, raising six children. I never experienced my mother drinking wine at a meal simply because she could not afford it. My only experience with wine was watching the Catholic priest partake of it every Sunday at the pulpit. Wine was never a part of my life until a certain point in my career at Kings. At some point, my curiosity was aroused although I can’t pinpoint a time as to when. If memory serves me correctly, I used to receive orders for wine when no one else was around to do it. There was this one delivery guy who would not pass for a wine aficionado at all. When I would check the order that he was delivering, he would spit out the types of wine so eloquently that it impressed me. I think it impressed me so much that it inspired me to learn more about the subject. That was the beginning; look where it got me. Of course, there is so much more to share; I will save that for another article.

Although Memorial Day weekend can be big regarding sales, it depends on the weather. Last year it was a beautiful weekend, this year not so much. We have been busy, but nothing compared to last year. Because it was cooler and wet, red wine dominated sales. Red blends, Cabs, Merlots, and European reds were flying off the shelf, along with a fair amount of hard liquor. One good thing about crappy weather on a holiday weekend is the business it brings to our local restaurants. When it rains, tourists tend to dine at restaurants. We all want to share the wealth, it’s healthy for our local economy.

As is very common this time of year, my YouTube content slows down a bit. I try not to let it happen, but invariably, the busy time of the season takes over, not to mention the lawn upkeep… Just saying. I have a cool idea for some upcoming episodes, and I hope you enjoy them. I have twenty subscribers, over a thousand since the last time I looked. I want to thank all of you for your continued support. One of my favorite subjects for my channel is interviewing winemakers or people deeply involved in the wine world. Recently, I was able to set up an interview with Keith Johnsen, owner of Elevens Imports, and Ashley Trout, owner and winemaker at Brook & Bull. I am very proud of both interviews. They are quite informative and entertaining. If you haven’t had a chance, check them out.

One of the most satisfying parts of my job is learning the palate of my customers and education. I’ve watched many people I know go from knowing very little about wine to becoming astute on the subject. This is through education on the wine aisle and tasting events that I have set up for people to participate in. I am very excited to have been a part of this growth in the interest in wine for my customers and the personal growth in knowledge for many of those I have come in contact with over the years. This is especially true regarding my wine department assistant. Watching his knowledge of wine grow over the years and his skill in helping customers find the wine that will fit their needs is something I am very proud of. Wine is a complicated subject, but only if you make it that way. In our department, we try our best to take the mystery out of the subject and help people to enjoy the wine experience without pretentiousness.


Stan The Wine Man

About Stan The Wine Man

I am a blue collar wine guy who has been in the biz for over twenty years. I work at a store in a tourist destination stop. I work hard at finding the best wine for the money. I love the challenge of learning my customer's palate so I can find the best wine for them, whether it is Petrus or white zinfandel. Cheers!
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