Learning to be a sommelier using Wine For Dummies with Gerald Lu

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How does a kid just out of National Service learn about wine when there are no teachers in Singapore? Wine for Dummies, of course.

Gerald Lu, one of Singapore’s leading sommeliers and current chair of the Sommelier Association of Singapore, had no choice. “The industry wasn't very helpful then. There wasn't a sommelier association. All the best wine guys are at The Raffles Hotel or maybe Les Amis, and these guys are very busy so you email them and nobody replies.”

Choosing to become a sommelier is unconventional in Asia, and hard graft in a place like Singapore where alcohol is expensive and wine isn’t baked into the culture. The Ministry of Manpower created a category for the job only in 2015.

Gerald is an example of how one can pursue the work you love despite being misunderstood or dismissed. In this interview we talk about how he found a path through an under-developed industry and the role of a sommelier as storyteller.

For a summary of actionable takeaways from this interview, go to www.foolishcareers.asia and subscribe to the newsletter.

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