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The Black Wine Guy Experience

MJ Towler aka the Black Wine Guy went from a totally obsessed wine newbie to the world's first ever African-American fine and rare wine auctioneer in less than 3 years.This show pairs his passion for complex, interesting
Latest Episode6/30/2022

The Road Less Traveled: Victor O. Schwartz’s Never Ending Story

Season 4, Ep. 75
MJ’s guest today is former banker turned wine importer, and founder of VOS Selections, Victor O. Schwartz. Victor initially worked in the banking sector on loans, stocks and bonds, before transitioning to the wine industry. His upbringing was steeped in an intense culinary culture. In 1986, Victor moved to France to jump start his wine career. VOS Selections has been a staple in the wine industry for over 35 years.In this episode MJ and Victor talk about his journey from banking to learning the language of terroir in the country of France, where he received hands-on experience in the wine business. The duo also discuss the money that drives the wine industry vs. the farming that drives it; whether we’re “there yet?” with non-alcoholic wine, the lost art of handwritten letters and its effectiveness (Thank you, Steven Spurrier), and ultimately how Victor O. Schwartz became VOS Selections. Pull up a chair, and a sharp one, this is a fast paced, laugh out loud good time with Mr. VOS!A huge thank you to Victor O. Schwartz! Follow him on IG at @vosselectionsCheck out his website: www.vosselections.comThis episode’s in studio wine:Champagne Alexandre Bonnet Les Riceys - Blanc de Noirs2006 Raven No. 5 California Syrah - Sine Qua Non_____________________________________________________________Until next time, cheers to the mavericks, philosophers, deep thinkers, and wine drinkers!Don’t forget to subscribe and be sure to give The Black Wine Guy Experience a five-star review on whichever platform you listen to.For insider info from MJ and exclusive content from the show sign up atBlackwineguy.comFollow MJ @blackwineguyThank you to our sponsor: Taub Family Selections. Taub Family Selections is a dynamic fourth generation, family-owned wine import company with a truly enviable portfolio of fine wines from 11 countries. They are proud to represent an exceptional portfolio of high quality, terroir centric and historic producers from around the world, including Italy and France - where they have an exciting roster of burgeoning vignerons from Burgundy coming your way soon.Learn more at www.taubfamilyselections.comThank you to our sponsor: Napa Valley Wine Academy. It’s no secret that everyone's wine education journey is unique. You deserve a wine School that not only delivers top-notch content but also guides you on the learning path that's right for you. Whether you're looking to earn your WSET certification or just get the basics the Napa Valley Wine Academy is the place to be.To learn more about NVWA go to: https://napavalleywineacademy.com/Love this podcast? Love the cool content? Get a producer like mine by reaching out to the badass team at Necessary Media.www.necessarymediaproductions.com@necessary_media_
6/30/2022

The Road Less Traveled: Victor O. Schwartz’s Never Ending Story

Season 4, Ep. 75
MJ’s guest today is former banker turned wine importer, and founder of VOS Selections, Victor O. Schwartz. Victor initially worked in the banking sector on loans, stocks and bonds, before transitioning to the wine industry. His upbringing was steeped in an intense culinary culture. In 1986, Victor moved to France to jump start his wine career. VOS Selections has been a staple in the wine industry for over 35 years.In this episode MJ and Victor talk about his journey from banking to learning the language of terroir in the country of France, where he received hands-on experience in the wine business. The duo also discuss the money that drives the wine industry vs. the farming that drives it; whether we’re “there yet?” with non-alcoholic wine, the lost art of handwritten letters and its effectiveness (Thank you, Steven Spurrier), and ultimately how Victor O. Schwartz became VOS Selections. Pull up a chair, and a sharp one, this is a fast paced, laugh out loud good time with Mr. VOS!A huge thank you to Victor O. Schwartz! Follow him on IG at @vosselectionsCheck out his website: www.vosselections.comThis episode’s in studio wine:Champagne Alexandre Bonnet Les Riceys - Blanc de Noirs2006 Raven No. 5 California Syrah - Sine Qua Non_____________________________________________________________Until next time, cheers to the mavericks, philosophers, deep thinkers, and wine drinkers!Don’t forget to subscribe and be sure to give The Black Wine Guy Experience a five-star review on whichever platform you listen to.For insider info from MJ and exclusive content from the show sign up atBlackwineguy.comFollow MJ @blackwineguyThank you to our sponsor: Taub Family Selections. Taub Family Selections is a dynamic fourth generation, family-owned wine import company with a truly enviable portfolio of fine wines from 11 countries. They are proud to represent an exceptional portfolio of high quality, terroir centric and historic producers from around the world, including Italy and France - where they have an exciting roster of burgeoning vignerons from Burgundy coming your way soon.Learn more at www.taubfamilyselections.comThank you to our sponsor: Napa Valley Wine Academy. It’s no secret that everyone's wine education journey is unique. You deserve a wine School that not only delivers top-notch content but also guides you on the learning path that's right for you. Whether you're looking to earn your WSET certification or just get the basics the Napa Valley Wine Academy is the place to be.To learn more about NVWA go to: https://napavalleywineacademy.com/Love this podcast? Love the cool content? Get a producer like mine by reaching out to the badass team at Necessary Media.www.necessarymediaproductions.com@necessary_media_
6/27/2022

Live from Hospice du Rhône, Part 2

Part 2 of MJ’s live chats from Hospice Du Rhône’s flagship event in Paso Robles, California.This bi - annual event brings together an international community to celebrate Rhône wines and winemakers.The 2022 event featured over 120 international Rhône producers, seminars on the forefront of Rhône thinking, an exclusive live auction and delicious meals paired with Rhône wines .. and MJ was there recording live with many of the brilliant winemakers and other prominent wine folks attending this year.These conversations are lively, poignant and full of the energy that happens when winemakers convene to drink and celebrate the wines they love dearly. Cheers!___________________________________________________________A huge thank you to Hospice du Rhône for inviting us to record!For more information on upcoming Hospice du Rhône events https://www.hospiceduRhône.org/Very special thanks to all our guests:Wine Critic, James SucklingKeep up with his reviews and wine tastings at https://www.jamessuckling.com/Follow him on IG: @james.sucklingFrédéric Chaudière of Château PesquiéKeep up with his wines at: https://chateaupesquie.com/Follow them on IG: @chateaupesquieDave Miner of Miner Family WinesKeep up with his wines at: https://minerwines.com/Follow them on IG: @minerfamilywineryMikael Sigouin of Kaena WinesKeep up with his wines at: https://www.kaenawine.com/Follow them on IG: @kaenawinesGuillaume Fabre of Clos SolèneKeep up with his wines at: https://www.clossolene.com/Follow them on IG:@clossolene____________________________________________________________Until next time, cheers to the mavericks, philosophers, deep thinkers, and wine drinkers!Huge thanks to Jeremy Leffert and Melissa Burns for their generous support in bringing you these special episodes.Don’t forget to subscribe and be sure to give The Black Wine Guy Experience a five-star review on whichever platform you listen to.For insider info from MJ and exclusive content from the show sign up atBlackwineguy.comFollow MJ @blackwineguy
6/20/2022

Live from Hospice du Rhône, Part 1

MJ brings his listeners a front row seat to the Hospice Du Rhône’s flagship event in Paso Robles, California.This bi - annual event brings together an international community to celebrate Rhône wines and winemakers.The 2022 event featured over 120 international Rhône producers, seminars on the forefront of Rhône thinking, an exclusive live auction and delicious meals paired with Rhône wines .. and MJ was there recording live with many of the brilliant winemakers and other prominent wine folks attending this year.These conversations are lively, poignant and full of the energy that happens when winemakers convene to drink and celebrate the wines they love dearly. Cheers!___________________________________________________________A huge thank you to Hospice du Rhône for inviting us to record!For more information on upcoming Hospice du Rhône events https://www.hospiceduRhône.org/Very special thanks to all our guests:Anne-Charlotte Mélia Bachas of Château de la Font du LoupKeep up with her wines at: https://lafontduloup.com/Follow her on IG: @anne_charlotte_lafontduloupRussell P. From of Herman Story WinesKeep up with his wines at: https://www.hermanstorywines.com/Follow them on IG: @hermanstorywinesChristophe Baron of Bionic WinesKeep up with his wines at: https://bionicwines.com/Follow them on IG: @bionicwinesDon Burns of Turtle RockKeep up with his wines at: https://www.turtlerockvineyards.com/Follow them on IG: @turtlerockvineyardsJeb Dunnuck, Wine CriticStay up on all things Rhône at: https://jebdunnuck.com/Follow him on IG: @jebdunnuckJordan Fiorentini of Epoch Estate WinesKeep up with her wines at: https://epochwines.com/Follow them on IG:@epochwines____________________________________________________________Until next time, cheers to the mavericks, philosophers, deep thinkers, and wine drinkers!Huge thanks to Jeremy Leffert and Melissa Burns for their generous support in bringing you these special episodes.Don’t forget to subscribe and be sure to give The Black Wine Guy Experience a five-star review on whichever platform you listen to.For insider info from MJ and exclusive content from the show sign up atBlackwineguy.comFollow MJ @blackwineguy
6/13/2022

Ladies First! How Isabel Ferrando found Passion and Purpose in Châteauneuf-du-Pape

Season 4, Ep. 74
MJ’s guest today is esteemed Châteauneuf-du-Pape vigneron and winemaker, Isabel Ferrando! Isabel has been cultivating vines and making wine in Chateauneuf-du-Pape for 18 years. Her wines have been dubbed by critics as “some of the most profound wines on the planet” (Jeb Dunnuck). Drawing inspiration from the Burgundian tradition of single vineyards, Isabel produced three different cuvées from Saint Prefert’s estates from 2003 to 2019: Classique, Réserve Auguste Favier and Collection Charles Giraud.In this episode, MJ and Isabel discuss how Isabel went from working for a bank to making wine in her own vineyard in Châteauneuf-du-Pape. Isabel shares details of her organic and biodynamic vineyard practices, her revolutionary new approach to making wine in a glass vat, and her daughter’s recent decision to follow in Isabel’s footsteps.A huge thank you to Isabel Ferrando!Follow Isabel on Instagram: @isabelferrando_stprefertCheck out her website here: www.st-prefert.comThis episode’s in studio wine:2021 Famille Isabel Ferrando Châteauneuf-du-Pape Blanc2018 Colombis Châteauneuf-du-Pape Domaine Isabel Ferrando_____________________________________________________________Until next time, cheers to the mavericks, philosophers, deep thinkers, and wine drinkers!Don’t forget to subscribe and be sure to give The Black Wine Guy Experience a five-star review on whichever platform you listen to.For insider info from MJ and exclusive content from the show sign up atBlackwineguy.comFollow MJ @blackwineguyThank you to our sponsor: Thank you to our sponsor: Taub Family Selections. Taub Family Selections is a dynamic fourth generation, family-owned wine import company with a truly enviable portfolio of fine wines from 11 countries. They are proud to represent an exceptional portfolio of high quality, terroir centric and historic producers from around the world. Learn more at www.taubfamilyselections.comThank you to our sponsor: Independence Wine and Spirits - or IWS. IWS is owned by the Taub family, who have re-entered the NY wholesale market, bringing the family back to its roots in distribution where they held court from 1951 – 2004.To learn more about IWS go to: https://independencewine.comThank you to our sponsor: Looking to special order that bottle you had on vacation? Need to find a bourbon your boss has never tried? How about wrapped bottle gifts for teachers, coaches or your salesforce? Grapes The Wine Company can provide all this and more! Zoom tastings, winemaker dinners, wine driven charity events, cellar consultations, stellar suggestions… they do it all. To learn more about GTWC go to: https://www.grapesthewineco.com/Love this podcast? Love the cool content? Get a producer like mine by reaching out to the badass team at Necessary Media.www.necessarymediaproductions.com@necessary_media_
6/6/2022

Papa Don't Preach! Lorenzo Scavino's Life as a 5th Generation Winemaker.

Season 4, Ep. 73
MJ’s Guest today is a 5th generation winemaker of Azelia, an historical and small family-run winery founded in 1920, in Castiglione Falletto in the heart of the Barolo region in Piedmont, Italy. Lorenzo attended the Oenological School in Alba, the most prestigious wine school in Italy. Lorenzo graduated summa cum laude with the title of Oenologist. Lorenzo works full time alongside his father Luigi at Azelia participating in every step of the process, from the work in the vineyards to the winemaking and sales management in Italy and around the world.On this week’s episode, MJ and Lorenzo discuss the pressure and joys of being the 5th generation, only child, to grow up in the wine business, working the vineyards and still not having the pleasure of tasting a 1932 vintage that his father holds so dear!! Lorenzo also shares how the Scavino family hid hundreds of bottles from the Germans during World War II; green harvesting to reduce the yields, Piedmont cuisine and more!A huge thank you to Lorenzo Scavino!Follow Lorenzo on Instagram https://www.instagram.com/lorenzo_scavino_azelia/For more information on Azelia visit https://www.azelia.it/en/This episode’s in studio wine:2019 Azelia Dolcetto d'Alba Bricco Dell'Oriolo2017 Azelia Barbera d'Alba Punta2020 Azelia Langhe Nebbiolo2010 Azelia Barolo Riserva Bricco Voghera_____________________________________________________________Until next time, cheers to the mavericks, philosophers, deep thinkers, and wine drinkers!Don’t forget to subscribe and be sure to give The Black Wine Guy Experience a five-star review on whichever platform you listen to.For insider info from MJ and exclusive content from the show sign up atBlackwineguy.comFollow MJ @blackwineguyThank you to our sponsor: Thank you to our sponsor: Taub Family Selections. Taub Family Selections is a dynamic fourth generation, family-owned wine import company with a truly enviable portfolio of fine wines from 11 countries. They are proud to represent an exceptional portfolio of high quality, terroir centric and historic producers from around the world. Learn more at www.taubfamilyselections.comThank you to our sponsor: Independence Wine and Spirits - or IWS. IWS is owned by the Taub family, who have re-entered the NY wholesale market, bringing the family back to its roots in distribution where they held court from 1951 – 2004.To learn more about IWS go to: https://independencewine.comThank you to our sponsor: Looking to special order that bottle you had on vacation? Need to find a bourbon your boss has never tried? How about wrapped bottle gifts for teachers, coaches or your salesforce? Grapes The Wine Company can provide all this and more! Zoom tastings, winemaker dinners, wine driven charity events, cellar consultations, stellar suggestions… they do it all. To learn more about GTWC go to: https://www.grapesthewineco.com/Love this podcast? Love the cool content? Get a producer like mine by reaching out to the badass team at Necessary Media.www.necessarymediaproductions.com@necessary_media_
5/30/2022

The Guy Behind The Guy. How Peter Morales Uses Food and Wine to Lift Others Up.

Season 4, Ep. 72
MJ’s Guest today is a renaissance man! He comes from an executive background, a wine importer, a business owner, and is dedicated to global humanitarian support, a Lehigh graduate, Peter Morales. His career began in retail and operations management at Johnson & Johnson, Grand Metropolitan (now Diageo), and Peerless Importers. In 1998, Peter opened his own worldwide business consulting company, Peter Andrew LLC, which specializes in international beverages. After taking on a project with South Africa, where he successfully developed plans to market wines to the United States, Morales jumped into the importing business, and started his company, 57 Main Street Imports. Peter's latest venture is Black Hawk Imports founded in 2014.On this week’s episode, MJ and Peter discuss his childhood in the Caribbean, getting an education in the sciences, his trips to Africa, and how everything is marketing.A huge thank you to Peter Morales!Check out his Linkedin: https://www.linkedin.com/in/peter-morales-8106325/This episode’s in studio wine:Smoke Eater First Due Red Pinotage 2018 South African Red WineSmoke Eater All Hands White Pinot Grigio 2018Peramo Anniversario BiancoPeramo Anniversario RoseVergelegen DNA 2019_____________________________________________________________Until next time, cheers to the mavericks, philosophers, deep thinkers, and wine drinkers!Don’t forget to subscribe and be sure to give The Black Wine Guy Experience a five-star review on whichever platform you listen to.For insider info from MJ and exclusive content from the show sign up atBlackwineguy.comFollow MJ @blackwineguyThank you to our sponsor: Thank you to our sponsor: Taub Family Selections. Taub Family Selections is a dynamic fourth generation, family-owned wine import company with a truly enviable portfolio of fine wines from 11 countries. They are proud to represent an exceptional portfolio of high quality, terroir centric and historic producers from around the world. Learn more at www.taubfamilyselections.comThank you to our sponsor: Independence Wine and Spirits - or IWS. IWS is owned by the Taub family, who have re-entered the NY wholesale market, bringing the family back to its roots in distribution where they held court from 1951 – 2004.To learn more about IWS go to: https://independencewine.comThank you to our sponsor: Looking to special order that bottle you had on vacation? Need to find a bourbon your boss has never tried? How about wrapped bottle gifts for teachers, coaches or your salesforce? Grapes The Wine Company can provide all this and more! Zoom tastings, winemaker dinners, wine driven charity events, cellar consultations, stellar suggestions… they do it all. To learn more about GTWC go to: https://www.grapesthewineco.com/Love this podcast? Love the cool content? Get a producer like mine by reaching out to the badass team at Necessary Media.www.necessarymediaproductions.com@necessary_media_
5/23/2022

Go Northwest Young Man! Why Todd Alexander Left Napa Valley To Manifest Destiny

Season 4, Ep. 71
MJ’s guest today is one of a select few 100-point winemakers in Washington State and winemaker with Force Majeure, Holocene, Weathereye Vineyards, PASXA, and The Walls: Todd Alexander. Previously, Todd was the Winemaker for acclaimed “cult” winery Bryant Family Vineyard in Napa Valley. He began his career in the Napa Valley at esteemed wineries including Cade and PlumpJack. Todd holds a winemaking certificate from UC Davis and has worked with some of the best and brightest in the wine industry, including vineyard manager David Abreu and winemaking consultant Michel Rolland. He has a passion for single vineyard and terroir-driven wines.In this week’s episode, hear Todd and MJ discuss Todd’s family history in the restaurant and agriculture industries, how Todd’s brother got him hooked on wine, and Todd’s journey to wine-making in Washington.A huge thank you to Todd Alexander!Follow Todd’s IG @metoddCheck out Force Majeure on IG @forcemajeurevineyards and at https://forcemajeurevineyards.com/wp/Check out Weathereye on IG @weathereye_vineyards and at https://www.weathereyevineyard.com/Check out PASXA Wines on IG @pasxawines and at https://pasxawines.com/Check out The Walls on IG @thewallsvineyards and at https://www.thewallswines.com/This episode’s in studio wine:2013 La Petite Chapelle HERMITAGE PAUL JABOULET AÎNÉ_____________________________________________________________Until next time, cheers to the mavericks, philosophers, deep thinkers, and wine drinkers!Don’t forget to subscribe and be sure to give The Black Wine Guy Experience a five-star review on whichever platform you listen to.For insider info from MJ and exclusive content from the show sign up atBlackwineguy.comFollow MJ @blackwineguyThank you to our sponsor: Thank you to our sponsor: Taub Family Selections. Taub Family Selections is a dynamic fourth generation, family-owned wine import company with a truly enviable portfolio of fine wines from 11 countries. They are proud to represent an exceptional portfolio of high quality, terroir centric and historic producers from around the world. Learn more at www.taubfamilyselections.comThank you to our sponsor: Independence Wine and Spirits - or IWS. IWS is owned by the Taub family, who have re-entered the NY wholesale market, bringing the family back to its roots in distribution where they held court from 1951 – 2004.To learn more about IWS go to: https://independencewine.comThank you to our sponsor: Looking to special order that bottle you had on vacation? Need to find a bourbon your boss has never tried? How about wrapped bottle gifts for teachers, coaches or your salesforce? Grapes The Wine Company can provide all this and more! Zoom tastings, winemaker dinners, wine driven charity events, cellar consultations, stellar suggestions… they do it all. To learn more about GTWC go to: https://www.grapesthewineco.com/