news > Meet Alex Heslop - Wine Ambassador
Our Wine Ambassador is on a mission and he wants everyone to get involved.
Having lived in the region for the past 18 months as the wine ambassador for Jacob’s Creek, for Alex, 2018 is more important than most. He’s spearheading the Our Table concept in the UAE and the reason he’s doing it, is because he truly believes that the best wine deserves the best food and company.
We sat with him to ask a little about his background and how he got the wine bug.
How did you get involved in wine to begin with?
Not unlike many others, my love of wine stems from my parents. Having grown up on a small farm in the South East of Australia, I have great memories of outdoor meals, with family and friends. Long afternoons and evenings learning about different varieties and styles, with the enjoyment of good company – and of course the odd glass!
And with the outdoor lifestyle, what types of wines were you influenced by?
My wine education was influenced by the food and weather at the time. Light crisp styles in summer and richer full-bodied varietals in winter. In saying that, I have always had a passion for a robust full bodied Australian red. These have a habit of reminding me of home.
What’s your favourite wine and why?
Oooh, tough question! As I say, depending on a mixture of the food, atmosphere and weather at the time, it could be anything from light crisp Rosé or fruity Pinot Grigio to a rich Shiraz or Cabernet. However, based on what I believe to be the excellence in which Australian winemakers work with the Shiraz grape, this probably takes the trophy. The rich plum, black fruits, chocolate, clove and spice notes, combined with balanced vanilla and oak aromas these wines show have a habit of striking a cord. Not only that but they pair amazingly with the famous Australian barbeque cuisine of which I am a big fan.
So we can see you love your red meats! What other pairings do you enjoy?
To most people, big red wines such as Cabernet are enjoyed principally with large red meat dishes. Whilst certainly the case, they are by no means restricted to these. One pairing that works beautifully is that of the Jacob’s Creek Reserve Coonawarra Cabernet Sauvignon and dark chocolate. From a local cuisine perspective though, it’s hard to go past a fresh feta and pomegranate salad paired with our new crisp Le Petit Rose.
What do you see happening in the wine industry?
The wine world is changing and its changing fast. With the endless access to information wine is no longer as intimidating as it once was and its fantastic to see people’s curiosity bringing great wines out of the shadows.
People love their wine and increasingly, they want to share that experience with those closest to them. The more I talk to people, simplicity and authenticity is key and this is what Our Table is about. Taking the pretense out of the experience and inspiring people to share their moments with those they care about.
Thanks Alex! Any final words?
I’m really looking forward to spreading the Our Table concept. Good wine, good food and good people – you can’t get better than that.
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