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If You Can Dream It, You Can Do It: Starting a Winery

Changing careers can be intimidating, when it comes to attempting to follow your dream. Jamie Kutch originally was a Wall Street trader when he decided to switch it up by starting a winery. Sara Bliss, author of TAKE THE LEAP, shares Jamie’s journey on what it takes to succeed after starting from scratch. 

Travel and taste a lot of wine.

Each region has its own mythology, techniques, style, and opinions on winemaking. The more knowledge you have on the variety of methods and what creates a range of tastes, the better your own product will be.

Talk to the experts.

Once you have chosen region and grape variety, you need to talk to everyone who has worked with those grape varieties. The old guard will have opinions that radically differ from those of the new, younger generation of producers. By speaking with both, you will learn to develop your own opinions, which will help form your own style.

Smelling and tasting are your tools.

Smell anything and everything you can from flowers to berries to grass to even a handful of dirt. Scent will help you choose when to pick your grapes and how much to extract from them and know whether things are working or not during the fermentation and aging process.

Work for free.

Reach out to winemakers and offer to apprentice. Be open to working a harvest for free. It isn’t difficult to make wine, but it is difficult to make great wine. Learning from others is a crucial step to becoming great.

Don’t have a plan B.

If you believe you will succeed, you cannot fail. For me, failure wasn’t an option, as I was well aware of what it was like working in a cubicle with halogen lights overhead. Now when I look up, I usually see a blue sky, the occasional hawk, and vineyards as far as the eye can see.

Find out more tips on how to start your own business in TAKE THE LEAP by Sara Bliss. 


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Excerpted from Take the Leap by Sara Bliss. Copyright © 2018 by the author. Used by permission of the publisher. All rights reserved.

Photo by Kym Ellis on Unsplash.


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