Sommelier Talks: An Interview with a Full Bodied Sommelier Daniele Di Blasio
Have you ever wondered what’s it like to have a career in wine industry? Or maybe you’re just a dedicated wine lover, who wants to know more? We put a spotlight on professional sommeliers and asked to tell us about their background, funniest stories and failures.
A few words about you, what do you do?
My name is Daniele Di Blasio, I am Italian and I moved to London in 2014. I work as a full bodied Sommelier with a bunch of crazy guys at Trishna, a one Michelin star Indian restaurant in Marylebone. We focus on ingredients and dishes from the southwest coast of India, and the beverage pairing with it is very entertaining.
What was your background before you became a sommelier?
I studied Literature and Philosophy at the University, specializing in Art, Cinema and Theater. Later I obtained an MBA (Master in Business Administration), very useful to discover that in economics two + two never gives four.
At the same time my appetite (literally) and curiosity towards food and wine have always been ‘gargantuan’. So, at the end, I had to follow my natural inclination, and I started working in the hospitality.
Did you know what is it going to be like when you just started? Do you remember your first day?
I knew that working in a restaurant I would never be too far from something to eat or drink, and that was enough.
My proper first day on the floor was in a charming restaurant in Valencia, Spain. I had just arrived to Spain, stammered a few words of Spanish, but it was really fun. I consider that restaurant (Lambrusqueria it’s the name) as an almost magical place, and I go back there as a guest quiet often, at least twice a year.
Have you had any failures so far and how did you get over it?
Obviously I’ve had failures, in my private life as in my working life. But it’s all very instinctive, the instinct of self-preservation is very strong, so I’ve always kept going as if nothing had happened.
What is the funniest story ever happened to you at work?
One day during a dinner service, a birthday cake with a shape of a phallus, a joking present to a girl from her friends, was mistakenly exchanged by the waiters with a cake for a different table. It was thus presented at the table of a lady who was celebrating her 88th birthday! The situation was comically epic for several minutes.
Any practical advice for people who are considering to become a sommelier?
I have hardly ever listened to anyone’s advice in my life, I have always wanted to make mistakes on my behalf. So the only advice I could give is: “Be curious!”
Bonus question: If you could only buy one bottle to drink in October, what would it be?
To keep me warm in October I will buy a bottle of a high toned and fruity Mezcal Los Siete Misterios Arroqueño.
If you are not yet a sommelier but enjoy having a good glass of wine over your dinner, download Wine Picker, a wine app for Android and iOS that helps to find the best wines matching your food and budget.