While many interviews are conducted in offices and conference rooms, some interviews require experience outside the office.
Whether it’s aiming high for a new job or looking for a promotion, further down the road, knowledge of wining and dining is a useful skill to have in the business world.
Originally a more international and high class drink, wine has now dispersed to all areas and all edges of society.
“Wine is one of those skills that never even used to be there. America wasn’t always a wine drinking society, but it is now,” said John Boyer, instructor of Tech’s geography of wine course.
Boyer believes that while being knowledgeable about the employing business should be the first concern, knowledge of wine and table manners is a close second.
“We’ve completely disconnected from that part of education about being civil. I’m not saying the college students aren’t civil, but how would they know any better,” Boyer said.
While it’s not a skill that someone could put in their resume, Boyer believes in the value of being able to discuss wine with both associates and superiors in a social work setting.
“It shows a certain level of savvy on your part to be able to speak this language. When you speak this language, you are speaking the language of the upper class, and you can’t tell me that’s not an impressive thing for a future employer or business associate,” Boyer said.
For newcomers to the wine world, Boyer had a few tips to offer.
“It’s always a safe bet to let the color or texture of your meal dictate the wine. A light fish and a lighter wine. Something hearty, a steak, a red wine goes well with that,” Boyer said.
It pays off to not only be able to recognize a good wine but to understand some foods are more appropriate with certain wines.
“Never drink more than your host, especially if you’re in a business setting. If it’s a high pressure setting, drink light.”
Some people may suggest not drinking at all, but Boyer would consider that disrespectful to not at least taste the wine, if it is
“You can’t show that you’re educated about it unless you partake,” Boyer said.
In addition to politeness, Boyer suggest being confident and educated about a wine when dining with an employer.
“Be confident in your palate because the taster is always right. You could disagree with someone, who may be your possible future boss, and that will make them garner way more respect for you instantaneously,” Boyer
Some professionals would personally use such a situation as a character test, to see whether someone is willing to defend their opinion, or just be a suck up.
For Boyer, it’s all about trying various wines, and not having a particular wine of interest and Keith Roberts, founder and proprietor of the Vintage Cellar, has a similar approach.