Born in Minnesota, Ryan is the co-founder of Catavino.net, Catavino Marketing, Wineblogger.info and the European Wine Bloggers Conference. He also consults on the AVIN project and the social tasting note site Adegga.com Although a chef at heart, Ryan’s time is spent giving workshops and speeches internationally on social media and blogging for wineries. Examples of his work include: Wine Future, London International Wine Fair 2009, 2010, Essência do Vinho, London Boutique Winery Tasting, Bibendum Annual Tasting, Congreso Internacional de Turismo Enologico, International Wine Tourism Conference & Workshop in Sitges, Fine Wine. A Certified Sherry Educator, member of the Wine Century Club and a Judge at Essencia do Vinho in Portugal. Ryan is always available for consulting at: Contact Ryan
Ryan’s Story Archive
Born and bred in Chicago, IL, Gabriella is the co-founder of Catavino.net and the Digital Wine Communicator’s Conference. Considered the “Little Engine that Could”, Gabriella is the motor behind Catavino’s projects, giving them life and fruition. Member of the Wine Century Club & the Circle of Wine Writers, a Certified Sherry Educator, Editor for Palate Press, Judge at Essencia do Vinho (2008,2009) and Bacchus (2010) and a post graduate of UMN with a Masters in Education, she can be contacted at Gabriella
Gabriella’s Story Archive
Andrea moved to Campo de Ourique, Lisbon, in early 2008 with a dream to work and learn more about Portuguese wine. Born in Northern Virginia in 1983, Andrea’s Italian family taught her the importance of pairing fresh food with great wine, eventually motivating her to graduate from the Culinary Institute of America (CIA), where she earned an Associates and Bachelor’s degree in Culinary Arts and Business Management, as well as her Introductory Certificate from the Court of Master Sommeliers in 2004. Andrea uses her love of culture, gastronomy and language to research the hidden recipes and wines of Portugal. Check out more opportunities to join Andrea’s food and wine experiences at An American In Portugal Tours .
Andrea’s Story Archive
Born in Lisbon, Portugal, Sonia grew up in New Jersey’s Ironbound-Newark community where a vibrant Portuguese immigrant enclave exists. Sonia’s passion for Portugal and its food and wine, eventually led her to Catavino. Her past writing experience includes: Life Editor at The Jersey Journal newspaper; Magazine Editor at Gateway Guide and Jersey City Magazine; Associate Editor at Event Marketer magazine. Currently, Sonia is the Director of Communications at Grand Central Marketing. At home, she is dedicated to recreating family recipes and experimenting with Portuguese wine pairings. Her very personal, long-term goal is to continue finding ways to help promote Portugal’s Beira Baixa region, its gastronomy and wine. It is the region where Bemposta do Campo is located. The sleepy, rural village where Sonia spent summers playing as her grandparents farmed and produced their homemade foods—including wine.
Sonia’s Story Archive
Sam is originally from Boston, MA. USA. He studied ecology and Spanish language during his undergraduate degree at Hampshire College (Amherst, MA). He then went on to train as a chef at the prestigious Culinary Institute of America (Hyde Park, NY) and earn an introductory certification from the Court of Master Sommeliers in 2013. He currently lives in Barcelona, Catalunya, Spain and works as a culinary tour operator and food/travel writer for several outlets, including his blog: Zucker & Spice Travel.
Sam’s Story Archive
Annie Manson has a passion for food, Sherry and entertaining. After many years of running her catering company in London, Annie headed for the beautiful Pueblo Blanco of Vejer de la Frontera and opened her Cooking School to share the fabulous food and wine of Andalucia. Originally from Scotland and a family of Whisky distillers, Annie qualified as a Sherry Educator in 2011 and runs sold out Cooking and Sherry workshops all year round in her Spanish Kitchen. In September 2013, she was adopted by the town of Vejer as a ‘’Vejeriga de Adopçion’’ in recognition of the attention she has brought to the gastronomy of the area.
Annie’s Story Archive
London based wine blogger, Robert worked in the UK wine trade for importers as well as representing wineries. Better known by his online moniker, thirstforwine, Robert grew up in Italy, Mexico, the USA, and a brief, but memorable time in Bulgaria. His background is marketing in business publishing and events, but after discovering wine during his days at St. Andrews University, it has become an increasingly important part of his life. Robert began blogging in 2006 and, thanks to the many great friends and contacts made through social media, is the co-founder of the DWCC – Digital Wine Communications Conference and one of the Vrazon team.
Robert’s Story Archive
Carla learned from an early age to appreciate food and its importance as a thread in uniting people. Raised in the Bahamas and Switzerland, she was always in the kitchen with her Colombian, Italian and Arabic family. Initially graduating in Art History, she felt a need to embark in a new life in Barcelona, Spain where she received her Culinary Arts degree at the Hofmann Escuela Culinaria. After owning her own restaurant for 5 years in Barcelona, she decided to pursue a more hands on approach, teaching in various schools throughout the city. Her extensive travel throughout Europe, South America and the Caribbean helped her hone her skills as an educator, and also gave her the idea to launch her own blog, Expat Chef in Barcelona to share her knowledge with the world.
Carla’s Story Archive
Tara O’Leary is the author and star of Wine Passionista. Based in the UK, Tara is a Certified Educator from the world-renowned Wine & Spirit Education Trust (WSET), and accredited by the Society of Wine Educators as a Certified Specialist of Wine.For over 10 years she has honed her expertise while enjoying a diverse range of responsibilities including as Head Sommelier at first-class London establishments, advising top hotels and restaurants on wines for their list, writing the book series, Every Wine Tells a Story, contributing articles to several online publications, and judging international wine competitions.
Tara’s Story Archive
After eight years as a lifestyle journalist in Spain, John decided to abandon his career in favor of brighter pastures and earned a Masters in Wine Marketing from the University of South Australia. Upon returning to his hometown in Logroño (La Rioja) in 2010, he was irretrievably launched into the wine business when he started working for one of the oldest wineries in the region. Supported by the gracious congeniality and great passion for wine he inherited from his parents -who both have over 30 years of experience in the industry-; today, he travels the world representing his brands as part of the winery’s export team. John is proud both to learn something new about wine every day and to continue with his other passion: communicating the things he discovers through writing.
John’s Story Archive
Rick physically resides in San Diego, CA, but his heart and soul live amongst the people of Spain. Born in 1966 to a Cuban mother and American father Rick’s passion for all things Spanish finds its roots in his heritage – which actually traces back to royalty in Cataluña. By profession, Rick is a Sr. Banker with Merrill Lynch Global Wealth Management, but his true passion lies in educating people about the amazing food and wines of Spain. He recently completed his Master of Business Administration as well as his Spanish Wine Educator Certification. Rick has lived in Madrid and travels to Spain regularly; but he ultimately desires to live and work in Spain full-time. Rick also authors Bodega: Adventures in Spanish Food & Wine, a site devoted to educating others on the gastronomic treasures to be had in Spain. Rick also maintains and writes the blog Bodega Spanish Wine.
Rick’s Story Archive
Originating from the Pacific Northwest region on the US, Rochelle grew up on a small farm where she learned the importance of good food. Now living on a small quinta in the Ribatejo region of Portugal, she has made it her job to research and learn the food culture and stories behind her new home. This has led to a need to share her findings with others who are interested in the beautifully simple and rustic gastronomy of Portugal through photography and writing. A professional photographer and writer, Rochelle’s work has been published on a variety of online food magazines and can be found on her personal blog at Acquired Life.