Tom Gilbey Revolutionises Wine Tasting with Virtual Masterclasses
Vino just got virtual
March 2021: Tom Gilbey is the man in the know when it comes to all things grapes. Having previously established The Vintner – an independent online wine retailer, based in London – he’s now in front of the camera, sharing his knowledge and enthusiasm for wine via his recently launched online masterclasses.
Keeping things informal, unstuffy, and entertaining, Tom’s wine tastings – suitable for small groups and large parties – are inclusive and aimed at both wine newbies and enthusiasts. The process is simple: participants choose a particular theme (A French connection, The Italian job, The Old World meets New), and are then sent four wines (served in half bottles, this is meant to be fun after all) paired with three British cheeses, relishes and biscuits, in the post. Simply uncork the wine, log on to Zoom, and get sipping.
Tom is instrumental in selecting the wines from both well-known and smaller vineyards across Europe in order to showcase the variety of the different regions, and cheese is sourced from Hamish Johnston Fine Cheeses.
Giving the old school wine tasting format a lighthearted makeover, Tom guides participants through each wine, sharing tasting notes as well as throwing in a few anecdotes for good measure. The joy of the sessions are brought together by Tom’s knack of presenting; seamlessly inviting everyone to get involved, no matter the previous experience of the participant. Incredibly charismatic whilst also being very down to earth, he draws on his decades of experience in the wine industry to bring an evening of both knowledge and fun, with just the right amount of audience interaction.
From corporate get-togethers to hen parties, or just a fun evening with friends, the wine masterclasses are tailored to appeal to all – and have been hugely successful in lockdown so far.
Despite being new to the virtual wine game, Tom has already racked up five-star reviews on Trustpilot with attendees praising Tom’s ‘infectious enthusiasm and informative guide through the wines, regions, and details about each one’.
It’s fair to say Tom’s love of wine runs in the family. The Gilbey’s were the first English family to buy a Chateau in Bordeaux (Chateau Loudenne in 1875) – here they made their own wine and stored purchases from elsewhere. And it wasn’t just wine the Gilbey’s produced, with Gilbey’s Gin also a popular product as well as rum and whisky.
With his unique ability to entertain both wine newbies and connoisseurs, Tom Gilbey’s wine classes are undoubtedly a lockdown game-changer, and perhaps the future of the vino industry.
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