Hello! We are Julia and Alexander, personally and professionally obsessed with wine. On any given day, you will find us shopping for wine, cooking and deciding what to pair with our meal, out visiting wineries, or on the couch studying up on different regions. We have both spent our entire careers working in the wine industry in everything from restaurants, retail, marketing, to winemaking, as a harvest intern. We stepped away from the industry to pursue MBAs at Cornell, but it has called us back. Through talking to our friends and classmates we found that many of them enjoyed drinking wine and were looking for recommendations for new wines and pairings. The world of wine is so complicated, it is hard to know where to start! It’s true, the possibilities are endless. So here we are with Vincurian, a guide to drinking and eating well everyday. Cheers!
Before discovering the world of wine, Julia started out bartending part-time in college at a high-end tequila bar. She became fascinated with how tequila, something most people associate with shots of Jose Cuervo, could actually taste so refined and different based on factors such as the amount of oak aging, the types of barrels used, or the producer.
While studying for a semester in Milan, her favorite thing to do was go to the grocery store and pick out a wine from a new region in Italy that she did not recognize. The one bottle that set her on the life path of wine was a Nebbiolo from Valtellina that she had while on a trip to Lake Como.
At age 22, she moved to NYC to learn about wine. She found herself working at a wine bar owned by a Master Sommelier, and after countless hours of studying and tasting she passed the Certified Sommelier exam.
Through her journey in the industry, she has worked for one the largest US retailers, which carried over 9000 different wines in one store, and made her way out to Napa to work in marketing for one of the largest global wine suppliers.
WSET Diploma in wine and spirits
Wine has always been central to Alexander’s life. As a young child, his parents enjoyed entertaining dinner party guests by having him recite the names of all the ‘first-growth’ Bordeaux. If that wasn’t enough to set him on the path, he often joined his parents on their frequent trips to Europe, which included exploring many of the most famous wine regions. Though he was too young to delight in the wines, he still remembers the anticipation and excitement associated with these visits.
It wasn’t until college, when he was studying art history abroad in Italy that he really learned to appreciate and enjoy wine. Much like a work of art is the product of a particular culture, place, and time, a wine is the result of a particular terroir and tradition of winemaking. Wine was a daily pleasure that, when paired correctly, made a meal transcend its individual components.
Seeking to get his hands dirty and to learn more about wine production, upon graduating college, he packed up his car and headed to Walla Walla, Washington and worked a harvest. In the following years, he crisscrossed the country working in wine retail in New Jersey and then corporate wine marketing in Napa.
Julia and Alexander met while working for the same company in Napa. They immediately bonded over their shared passion and the fact that they grew up an hour away from each other on the East Coast, but had both moved to California to pursue a career in the wine industry. They currently live in Ithaca, NY with their two dogs. They will graduate from Cornell in May and are planning their wedding for June 2020.