Updated: Feb 27, 2020
In her own words
“My love of wine began over 20 years ago when I was working as a sales executive for a software company, traveling all over the country and working with some brightest people in the industry. One aspect of my job, which I enjoyed the most, was entertaining prospective clients—typically taking them out to dinner at the finest restaurants around the country for great food and wine. The first time I was handed a wine list that was as thick as a phone book, I panicked! Everyone at the table was looking to me to choose the perfect wine selection to accompany our meal. I scanned the list for anything familiar and hoped the client (and my boss) would not see how nervous I was. I asked the waiter for help, but was greeted with a healthy dose of attitude.
To ensure this embarrassment would NEVER happen again, I began studying wine. I wanted to navigate a wine list and dazzle my clients unassisted. I began taking wine classes, attending wine dinners and reading as much as I could about wine. As my knowledge and confidence increased, I began to look forward to taking charge of the wine list. My passion for wine grew and eventually I decided to take a sabbatical to walk away from my 6-figure software job to study wine.
I moved to Manhattan to study with the American Sommelier Association to earn a certificate in Viticulture and Vinification. During that time, I worked at one of the largest wine stores in New York City and was asked to host a wine tasting class. It was at this tasting that everything clicked—I enjoyed teaching about wine in my humorous, attitude-free style and could see the light bulb going on for them. It was then that I realized what my true calling was–to combine wine and laughter to bring people together.
The most rewarding part of my job is that I can save my customers from the awkward moments I suffered with the wine list back in my software days. Over the last 14 years, I have armed thousands of corporations, associations and wine lovers with the confidence to take charge of the wine list. In addition to live events, I offer an online video course, Pick The Perfect Wine Every Time where you can learn how to swirl, sip and savor like a pro in just 5 classes.
In 2012, I invested in taking my comedic skills to the next level by training at the DC IMPROV. This allowed me to create my Comedic Wine Tasting show entitled “Something to Wine About” where I share the ultimate pairing—WINE & LAUGHTER.”
See more about Laurie on her website The Wine Coach –
*** Please follow along on instagram as well and learn more about Susan. This year for my birthday, I am embarking on a weekly photo essay project highlighting 52 Phenomenal Women. This is week 17 of 52. Participants in this project will be supporting the efforts of Dress for Success Worldwide – Central. We are all stronger together and it is my sincere hope that we will be inspired by each other’s stories. Now is the time to celebrate as well as encourage one another. Tell your story!***