Grape Experience is a proud supporter of San Francisco Wine School’s Glancy Wine Education Scholarship Fund(GWEF), which provides scholarships to low income students looking to start or advance a career in wine or hospitality. Next month is the foundation’s 2019 Luxury Wine Anniversary and Scholarship Auction event on November 2 – an evening of of great wine, food, a hilarious Somm Smackdown, and auction of incredible items and experiences, all benefiting the GWEF.

In anticipation of the event, we sat down with David Glancy MS, Founder and CEO of San Francisco Wine School and of the GWEF, to find out more about his passion for wine and education. 

Q: What inspired you to enter the wine industry?

A: My love of food got me into restaurants at age 15, washing dishes, bussing tables and then working as a prep cook and baker by 16. I majored in Hotel & Restaurant Management at Michigan State and transitioned into hotel front desk management and eventually back into restaurants on the dining room management side. My passion for wine exploded when I sold a lot of wine managing a restaurant in Macau China. After returning to the US and managing a night club and American, French and Italian restaurants I realized my favorite part of the job was managing the wine programs, selling wine to customers and training the staff.

Q: What do you enjoy most about teaching wine?

A: I love when I can see someone’s passion for wine, food and travel really take off. It is especially gratifying when they blossom into professionals whether opening wine bars, launching their career in restaurants, taking off to work harvest across the world, traveling to multiple wine regions, winning competitions, earning credentials and especially when I get to see them expressing their passions with others.

Q: Why do you think wine educational courses are useful?

A: Classes and credentials are not the only way to learn and move up in the industry but the structure of many certification programs shows students a path to what to learn and how. The journey of studying, tasting and passing exams gives students the courage to pursue new challenges. And the credentials themselves open the doors for many professional opportunities. The credentials also help employers evaluate what potential employees know. As people continue in their careers pursuing more credentials, along with tasting, traveling and working in the wine trenches are all ways pros challenge themselves, grow and continuously improve.

Q: Do you have any educational resources you’d recommend to students? (i.e. books, websites)?

A: I have always considered Kevin Zraly’s Windows on the World Complete Wine Course to be the best starting point. Madeline Puckett does a great job making wine easy to understand on Karen MacNeil’s Wine Bible and everything ever written by Jancis Robinson are great for taking wine studies to the next level. Society of Wine Educator’s blog, and are great ways to stay up-to-date.

Q: What’s your desert island wine?

A: CHAMPAGNE, fool, and lots of it. And I’ll need an oyster knife.2017_SF_Wine_School-2275

Hope to see you in November! Special Early Bird pricing of $295 is available now through October 15.