Name: Jaime Girones
At the moment: Mexico
Currently: Sommelier/Consultant Sommelier
Please, tell us a little bit about your first encounter with wine & the wine industry? Any particular mentor at that time?
My family comes from Spain and my grandfather was an agriculture man and he made wine, a very good wine, wine is part of the day a day in my life, and some years ago changed the chemical practice ( I am chemical engineer) for the sommelier way of life.
What specific traits or skills should a Sommelier(e) possess for professional performance and is there any person with that qualities you especially admire within the wine industry?
I always think that to be a sommelier, you must have an open mind, an open taste, an open way to see day a day, always you will find a taste, a smell, a sensitive expression, you will learn that you have a prefer wine, but maybe is not the wine that you must advice or serve in a dinner. There are lots of people in the wine industry that I admire, because they are very open-ended to give the things they know in a free way .
What would be your advice to a young Sommelier(e) i.e. Commis Sommelier(e) where to look finding an adequate position at home or abroad? Any further tips?
That he has to work hard everyday, study everyday, serve better everyday. Must have a good smile and relaxed energy to the customer.
When a customer asks for advice on selecting wine what's in your opinion would be the best approach?
Well you must know what foods are serving that day and you must have four or more wines selected for the customer. You must know the taste and favourites of the client.
What's your philosophy about glasses? Are you working with well known brands or are you considering new brands as well and how do you determine?
Well, a good glasses is a point to appreciate wine, in México you find that is more common to have a good glasses at service. But a common glass serves too.
What advice would you give people on pairing wine with food?
Well in Mexico we have a very tasty food, a lot of spices, herb, and chilies, I always say that they must ask for the sommelier suggestion, that’s why there is one in the restaurant.
In a particular way, I always recommended that if it is hot, spicy a Cava, white or pink wines. And if the spice is medium you could have a red one, but there are some food, Mexican foods that could be Crianza, Reserva or with oak .
Should a Sommelier(e) taste the guest's wine?
When he appreciated that there is something that compromised the serve, yes. The common day a day with the nose is OK.
Where would you suggest a young Sommelier start searching for Sommelier positions on the internet in your country?
There are some associations, they have to check their pages….
Asociación Mexicana de Sommeliers (AMS)
Asociacion Sommeliers México (ASM)
Organización nacional de sommeliers (ONSOM)
What are the key ingredients for creating a wine list for a restaurant and what is your opinion on some ridiculous pricing on wine in restaurants, do you have tips on how to determine markups?
For me depends where and when are you staying.
How do you manage to stay on top of the changes in the wine industry?
Read a lot, work with the importers and distributors, taking courses, traveling and drink Wine. Taking notes about the wine and preserve it.
How would a new vineyard get the attention of someone like you to notice their wine and what's the best way for producers to improve their chances of being listed?
They invited me to see the vineyards, production site, taste the wines, working with my team and are trying to introduce it.
If you were a wine, which variety would you be, and why?
I think a Barbera grape wine mix, cause I love it.
What are the top 3 types of wine (your faves) would we find in your home wine collection and what's your desert island wine?
Well three that I can buy, with reasonable prices for my pocket
Carmelo Rodero Reserva ( Spain)
Cousiño Macul Antiguas reservas Merlot (Chile)
Monte Xanic , Cosecha Tardia ( México)
@ by Dominik Kozlik – Zeitgeist Sommeliers - www.sommeliers.at