What's the best way to start learning about wine?
Drink it! Note what you like and what you don’t like and you’ll start to have a base knowledge of your favorites, which are much more important than anyone else’s.
Tell us about a memorable wine or wine related experience.
When I had my PR company, I planned a trip to Bordeaux and visited all the premier Grand Cru Châteaux (d'Yquem, Margaux, Latour, Laffite, Pétrus!). The trip was in October, during harvest, and it was almost cinematic from my point of view. Much of what I know about winemaking I picked up then—along with an intense love for Château Cheval Blanc, which was the only big red I tasted in barrel that I found palatable and delicious (when it’s been in the bottle for a bit, it’s spectacular).
What's your favorite wine for versatile pairings.
Champagne is the little black dress of wines—versatile, classy, always works. It’s also a lot easier to become a Champagne expert than a general wine expert. The offerings are much smaller than, say, Pinot Noir.
Tell us about an underrated cuisine for wine pairing.
Everyday American comfort food and home cooking! Some think the food we eat most of the time isn’t fancy enough to pair with wine. But if you like to have wine with dinner, and dinner is fried chicken or meatloaf or scrambled eggs, you should pair a wine with that!
You have a month to travel on a shoestring. Where would you go?
Thailand. I love Bangkok, and would like to see more of the country, the beaches and the mountains. It is an amazing food country as well. I like Muay Thai too, so I’d go train.
Jennifer Leuzzi is Director of Marketing at Gilt Taste. Born and raised in Hawaii, Jennifer learned to order vintage, blanc de blanc Champagne as a girl, when her family celebrated special occasions at fancy restaurants—she still believes that if you’re offered a glass of Champagne, you should always say yes. Jennifer came to the mainland to study Journalism at NYU and went on to the Ecole de Gastronomie Française Ritz-Escoffier in Paris to study cooking. She worked as a cook at various Michelin-starred restaurants in Paris, including Michel Rostang. Back in New York, Jennifer mastered pâté and PR at D’Artagnan, then opened her own boutique firm, JKL Mediaworks, where she represented culinary moguls including Drew Nieporent and Lespinasse, and American Express. She coauthored a cookbook with chef Christian Delouvrier and penned the popular Epicurious column The Corner Table along with stories for New York Magazine, Bon Appetit and Town and Country. Jennifer has hosted the James Beard Foundation Awards red carpet for the past three years and tweets about her food and wine adventures at @mmesnack.