I grew up in a wine area, but never worked within the wine industry. (Car industry was my home. Educated in industrial economies and a marketing degree). The endless rows of vineyards never really impressed me. They had always been there. Yes! Sure, I found it very cozy and idyllic, and the views were pretty romantic at times, of course! But no, I never heard the grapes growing. Was maybe annoyed during harvest time, when all the tractors slowed us down on the roads. But I loved the winefests, oh yes! And I drank wine. Obviously.
I never really thought about wine. It was just there. My passion for wine started through living in Sweden.
It is here my wine-world was turned up-side-down. Suddenly there was a lot of talk about wine and alcohol in general. Suddenly, after having grown up with wine all around me, wine became something exciting! There came tons of rules with it, too!:
* You can only buy it at the monopoly (me who always thought that was just the name of a game). And only until 6 p.m. in the evening during weekdays. Saturdays until 2 p.m. (So, god forbid you get spontanous guests at 6.05 p.m. and you have nothing to drink at home!)
* You need to know the number of your wine.
* You do not drink it during the week.
* It is officially ok to drink Fridays and Saturdays. Sundays I am not totally sure, yet.
Some more could be mentioned... From the very beginning I felt my personal freedom was being limited quite considerably, but...
German wines are well known among wine connoisseurs, but, sadly enough, the average consumer here (and maybe in many other countries) does not really have any interest in them. Though the trend is changing! To give my little contribution to that, I, with the help of other wine enthusiasts, started a small winefest in our area. For a few years, we had some good days with lots of work and happy guests. During that 'adventure' I understood that I knew too few facts about grape growing, wine making, wine styles, etc. etc. So I decided to get educated. That is how I got to the sommelier school for one year. And now I understand how much more there is to learn! Don't you love it.