In The Easy Chair with ... Ryan Robinson

In The Easy Chair with ... Ryan Robinson

Record-Journal


AGE: Old enough to drink and old enough to drive ... but preferably not at the same time.

OCCUPATION: Sommelier at Weekapaug Inn.

RESIDENCE: Westerly.

BORN, RAISED & GREW UP IN: Hailey and Sundance, Idaho.

RIGHT NOW I’M IN THE MIDDLE OF: Studying for my master sommelier diploma ... anywhere from two to six hours a day.

FAVORITE WAY TO SPEND MY TIME: Traveling. It’s so good to escape and explore.

PROUDEST ACCOMPLISHMENT: I thought it was completing an iron man competition, but now I know its passing my advanced sommelier exam.

I’D LIKE TO BE REMEMBERED FOR: My hard work ... and for being a fair and open person.

TOP ON MY BUCKET LIST: Tour Ireland.

ALWAYS IN MY POCKET: A wine key.

WHAT I WANTED TO BE WHEN I GREW UP: An attorney. My, how things change.

PERSON WHO HAS INFLUENCED ME THE MOST: Hands down, my mother, Toni. A single mom, she taught me that hard work and persistence pay off. She would tell me; “Keep at it, you can find success.”

FAVORITE AUTHOR: Karen MacNeil’s “The Wine Bible.”

I AM READING: “The Wines of Greece,” by Konstantinos Lazarakis. It’s a real page-turner.

I AM LISTENING TO: A podcast from the Guild of Sommeliers.

FAVORITE MOVIE: “The Dead Poets Society.” It has a good message.

FAVORITE TV SHOW: I don’t have one.

FAVORITE PET: Phoenix, my monster cat who has to be at the center of everything.

FAVORITE COMFORT FOOD: Anything that’s sweet and salty.

AMOUNT OF TIME I SPEND ON SOCIAL MEDIA: Not a whole lot. I sometimes post about cycling and wine on Instagram.

TRAIT I MOST ADMIRE: Loyalty, followed by trustworthiness and humility.

PET PEEVE: Passive aggressive behavior.

FAVORITE QUOTATION: “Be the change you wish to see in the world.”

MY FAVORITE THING ABOUT OUR LITTLE CORNER OF THE WORLD: How the natural world and the water come together here on this little split of land, and how kind and genuine this community is.

CAN’T LIVE WITHOUT: Champagne.

LITTLE KNOWN FACTS ABOUT ME: I am 6 feet 9 inches tall and I am terrified of heights. I also completed an iron man competition.

BEST ADVICE I EVER RECEIVED: Came from Eric Cook, who was formerly the head sommelier at Beverly’s at the Coeur d’Alene Resort, who said: “This is where the work begins, never stop striving.”

ADVICE I BEST LIKE TO GIVE: If you are willing to work hard, you really can achieve what you want to achieve.

IF I WON THE LOTTERY, THE FIRST THING I WOULD DO IS: Split it with my family. My parents have done so much for me, I’d like to return the favor. I’d still show up for work.

I DRIVE A: Pearl-colored 2014 Ford Edge.

I WISH I DROVE A: Black Mercedes 300.

ALWAYS IN MY FRIDGE: Champagne and celery.

IF I COULD INVITE ONE SPECIAL PERSON TO JOIN ME FOR DINNER AND CONVERSATION, I WOULD INVITE:

Madame Clicquot. She was an amazing woman and a trailblazer who took a complex subject and made it understandable. She molded the future of so many sommeliers. She was a French businesswoman who, when her husband died, took over his company, even though women were not allowed to have businesses at the time. She developed a technique called riddling, which is why we have clear champagne today.

— Interview conducted and edited by Nancy Burns-Fusaro


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