Wine Wisdom Kunde Sonoma Valley Sauvignon Blanc 2014 This approachable sauvignon blanc is 100 percent family owned, estate grown and bottled. Fresh citrus on the nose leads into a plump acidic and complex palate, making this sauvignon blanc a clear choice for fresh seafood.
Chelsey Malstrom, Seven Sisters Spirits, Detroit Lakes, Minnesota
Primarius Pinot Noir 2013 Oregon pinot noirs are great for veteran or novice wine drinkers. Veterans can appreciate the light body style, and novice wine drinkers aren’t turned off by intense tannins. Primarius is one I find myself recommending daily. It’s jammy and light with balanced acidity, making this pinot noir incredibly juicy and irresistible!
e spoke with Chelsey Malstrom of Seven Sisters Spirits, Detroit Lakes, Minnesota, about her introductory sommelier course, one of four steps in becoming a master sommelier, the most intense and prestigious level of wine study. IH: When did you begin your study for sommelier certification? CM: I began studying for the intro sommelier test roughly six months prior to taking the test. My job surrounds me with the opportunity to study daily, so I actually began preparing three years prior. It is a huge commitment personally. I bought probably a dozen books initially and then started my personal wish list— wines I wanted to buy to sample that might be out of my price range. At Seven Sisters, we meet once a week with sales representatives to sample new products, which continues to be a great tool as I move forward in my studies. IH: What inspired you to do this? CM: Previous to my line of work now, I graduated from Le Cordon Bleu College of Culinary Arts Minneapolis/St. Paul and took an internship at Walt Disney World Resorts. I had a blast working the food and wine festival, so the marriage between food and wine spoke volumes to me. When I moved back to Minnesota, I started working at Seven Sisters. I discovered my passion for wine, and I have been happily pursuing it ever since! My customers truly
90 | March/April 2016
inspire me. It is so fun to have customers give me total control over their wine selections. They know I will not steer them wrong. IH: Where did you obtain your initial certification? CM: I obtained my Introductory Sommelier Certificate August 18, 2015, in Minneapolis. IH: Who were your instructors? CM: I had three instructors, all master sommeliers who were fascinating and incredibly knowledgeable: Wayne Belding from Boulder, Colorado, an international educator and author of “Diving Into Wine” and the 13th American to pass the master sommelier examination in 1999; Laura Williamson, one of 23 female master sommeliers in the world, wine director at the Mandarin Oriental restaurant in New York City; and Andy Meyers, Washington, D.C., wine director at Jose Andres’ Think Food Group. IH: What’s next for you? CM: The next step for me is to pass the certified sommelier exam. With each step in the process, it becomes more challenging. I have to take it within a 3-year period from my introductory exam, so my plan is to spend a year studying and preparing. Most of my studying is solo, but I have great online resources and group connections. It’s incredible to have so many people in the wine industry willing to help.