How did you get into wine?

After attending a wine training session with my part-time restaurant job while studying, I wandered into Wine Co looking to learn a little more. This is when I met Peter for the first time and he very kindly lent me what I like to call his ‘book of smells.’ It’s actually called Le Nez du Vin. I was baffled by how challenging it was to connect your ability to smell with the linguistic side of your brain.

How did you get hired at Wine Co?

After visiting the shop to recover from one too many stressful restaurant shifts, Peter randomly gave me his card and offered me a job. I partly see myself as the rescue of the company as I still question whether I was hired solely because I could reach the top shelf without using the wobbly fold-up step.

What is your favourite Wine Co memory(ies)?

It’s impossible to name just one! I’ve loved the endless chaos that goes on behind the scenes of the little Shop on Bell Street. I’ve enjoyed the numerous debates with Peter about Scottish politics, the sing-offs with John when customers aren’t in the shop, the cardboard fencing matches with Cate, Laura’s excellent southern accent during the stock counts, and Miller’s dance moves at events. The whole time has been experience start to finish.

Do you think you’ll stay in the wine trade?

Well, considering my degree is a blend of Russian and Comparative Literature, the next steps aren’t so clear for me. A fantastic wine educator once suggested I could have an excellent career in the black market for wine seeing as a lot of the stolen wine ends up in Russia. However, that option doesn’t seem particularly viable or legal…

Peter's thoughts...

I realised that I tend to hire foreigners in my business, so thought it best to try hiring a Brit for once and brought in Natalie. Even though we share the same surname, and a northern England heritage, we don't think we are related! I admit I was a little worried at first because I didn't know if she shared the same sense of insane humour everyone else did, but it became apparent that she did and we have clung together as the two Brits in a sea of foreigners that are my staff!

She flung herself into the crazy world of 16 Bell Street, and has become a dear friend to us all - I'll miss the spontaneous Russian she speaks, I'll miss the incredibly high heeled boots getting delivered to my business address and I'll miss the constant pestering to allow her to put up a pole dancing pole in the shop - and most of all I'll miss her delightful boyfriend, Max! (and, of course, I'll really miss her, but I couldn't resist saying that as it will really annoy her!)

Peter Wood