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Madeline is a Certified Sommelier based in Seattle, WA. She co-founded the Wine Folly blog in 2011, with the intention of helping beginners learn more about the wine they enjoyed so much. With a background in design, creating wine infographics just made sense – and after the success of several visually pleasing educational diagrams, she went on to author an entire wine book called Wine Folly: The Essential Guide to Wine. Following up to this 5-star rated book that continues to rank #3 in “best wine books” on Amazon, she cultivated additional research and refined the graphics to create a new edition with nearly twice the content of the first: Wine Folly Magnum Edition: The Master Guide.
In this episode, we talk about everything wine-related, from Madeline’s first sip of wine at age 9, to losing her job and landing her first job in the wine industry, to the creation of the Wine Folly blog and books.
And of course, Madeline will teach you some wine basics like how to find a great wine that fits your palate and budget and how to use your retro nasal (basically a 6th sense for wine tasting!). So grab a glass and pop a cork, and let’s get to adulting!
How Madeline went from “wine lover” to certified sommelier
- The “series of unfortunate events” that led to a wine job in Reno, NV
- The vision of Wine Folly – helping beginners understand the subtleties of wine
- The technical work behind the design systems used in the Wine Folly books
- What’s the difference between a cheap bottle of wine and a $20+ bottle?
- Finding the best value wine for your dollar – the books provides data-backed baseline prices for every variety
- Analyzing and taking wine notes:
- Look – opacity and color
- Swirl – turbidity and concentration
- Sniff – pick out 3-5 specific scents, and order from most to least obvious
- Taste – feel texture on palette, and smell by using your retro nasal
- Food and Wine pairing basics
Madeline has 2 books available that both feature amazing visual maps, infographics, and charts about wine. You’ll learn all about the wine regions around the world, how to taste wine, how to pair wine with food, and so much more! I personally own the Essentials guide, but I will be purchasing the Master guide to complete my collection.
- Wine Folly: The Essential Guide to Wine
- Wine Folly Magnum Edition: The Master Guide
- Free Wine 101 Guide when you sign up for Wine Folly newsletter
I recently put together a small collection of my favorite wine essentials (including the Wine Folly book!) so you can get started on your own wine journey!