Having completed a work placement practical at wine.co.za last year (2018) while completing her studies with the Pinotage Youth Development Academy which included completing WSET Level 1 and 2, Jamie-Lee thoroughly enjoyed working with the team and this lead to her year long learnership with wine.co.za from December last year.
When did you first develop an interest in wine?
In 2017 a friend who was studying at Pinotage Youth Development Academy (PYDA) introduced me to wine. I was curious as to what all the fuss was about and wanted to learn more about wine so I could better understand it.
How has your WSET qualification helped you in your role at wine.co.za?
It has helped me a lot, as knowing more about wine and having an in depth understanding of the technical aspects of wine helps me when editing and uploading content. I actually know what I’m uploading and editing and can correct mistakes or make improvements.
What did you enjoy most about the WSET courses with The Wine Centre?
Studying words I could hardly pronounce was a unique experience. The curiosity about other countries' wines drove me to adjust my studying techniques and the end results were all worth it.
What has been your most memorable wine moment?
Food and wine pairing and the effect that wine has on food. It is so interesting how wine can influence food in different ways. I find it fascinating when you have the wrong wine pairing and how this influences the food you eat. Similarly, how the right glass of wine can improve a dish and heighten the flavours in the food.
You studied the Wine and Tourism Programme through the Pinotage Youth Development Academy, what did you enjoy most?
I enjoyed that we could go out and interact with people from other cultures as part of the tourism module. At PYDA we were like a family and it was a great learning environment. We also focused on both personal as well as professional development and the self reflection helped me to flourish.
What words of advice do you have for someone wanting to pursue a career in wine?
I would say go for it. I’m new in the industry and the wine industry is very wide, and the more I learn the more I enjoy it. This industry presents with an immersive experience from soil to vine and everything that goes into creating the perfect bottle of wine.