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Vin Chicago Blog

 

Vin Chicago's Hunter Logan Passes Certified Sommelier Exam!

Earlier this week, the Court of Master Sommeliers administered their Certified Sommelier exam here in Chicago. Our very own Hunter Logan sat the exam and we are proud to announce that we have a new Certified Sommelier on our team!  Hunter is one of six current team members to hold a certification from the Court of Master Sommeliers, joining Certified Sommeliers Jennifer Blair, Alexandria Contos and Jim Matthews, and Advanced Sommeliers Mike Baker and Michael Matonte. Congratulations Hunter! 

 

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Meet Elston Avenue's Jenna Yeh- A Chef By Training With A Profound Passion For Wine!

Vin Chicago Bio!

- Jenna Yeh –

 

 

Jenna has been at our Elston Avenue store for just three months but it's hard to remember what life was like pre-Jenna. Always smiling, Jenna is the kind of person we love having on our team. She speaks softly, but with a profound passion and excitement. A chef by training, with stints at Girl & the Goat, Taxim and Green Zebra, Jenna has as much love for food as for wine. Looking for a perfect wine to pair with your special dinner? You'll want to seek her out!

 

 

What is your first wine memory?

 

When I was 10 or 11 years old, my mom took me and my sister to Sunday brunch at the Drake Hotel. She ordered a glass of chardonnay, who knows what it was, and let me have a sip...It was buttery and rich, like PIE! Pretty amazing for a chunky little preteen 

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Meet Hunter Logan: Chiavennasca Connoisseur, Culinary Adventurist and Puppy Lover!

Vin Chicago Bio!

- Hunter Logan –

 

 

What can we say about Hunter Logan? He is one of the sweetest, most sincere people you will ever have the pleasure of meeting. His passion for wine and zest for life are inseparably intertwined. Ask about his latest culinary exploit and you're certain to get a big smile and a mouth-watering story!

 

 

What is your first wine memory?

 

I don't really have a "first" wine memory. It is more of a continuous string of memories that comprise my childhood. Wine was always a constant in my family - not surprising as some members hailed from the south of France - and a delicious bottle of wine was always present at the dinner table. Ironically, it was most often a bottle of Rioja and not a classical French wine. Riojas were a family favorite and I still enjoy them a great deal to this day. 

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Meet Washington State Native and Certified Sommelier Jim Matthews!

Vin Chicago Bio!

- Jim Matthews –

 

 

Always ready to greet you with a smile and a handshake, Jim's love, passion and enthusiasm for wine is as strong as his customer service. A member of our team for 22 years, he first joined us in 1992 at our former Forest Park location. In 2007 he helped open our store in Barrington where he's been ever since. In addition to working for us, Jim has taught wine appreciation classes at College of DuPage, was a wine columnist for North Shore Magazine and hold his Level II Certified Sommelier certificate from the Court of Master Sommeliers.

 

 

What is your favorite wine region?

 

I enjoy wines from most of the world's wine regions, so picking a favorite region is like trying to pick a favorite song or movie. However, the wine region that's most familiar to me is Washington state. I was born in a small town located I what is now the Columbia Valley AVA, and I still have family there today. Over the years I've toured nearly 30 wineries during my trips visiting family. I try to stay abreast of the Washington wine scene, although with nearly 800 wineries today, it becomes more and more challenging.

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Meet Advanced Sommelier Michael Matonte!

Vin Chicago Bio!

- Michael Matonte –

 

 

A wine guy to the core, Mike Matonte has a major passion for Italian wines and will totally flip out over a great Barolo. He joined us in 2007 at our Elston Avenue store and now manages the Naperville store and our social media. When Mike's not at the store, you'll find him studying for the Master Sommelier Diploma exam (he's already passed his Level III Advanced Sommelier test!), conversing with wine lovers on Twitter, Facebook and Instagram or hanging out with his wife and new baby!

 

 

What is your first wine memory?

 

My journey into the world of wine began in 2000 as a server at Timpone's in Urbana, my first serious restaurant job. I didn't have any knowledge of wines and remember the chef/owner, Ray Timpone, coming up to the dining room to taste us out on a couple of new additions to our by-the-glass list. He was asking the servers what they smelled in the wine. Answers started flying around like cinnamon, violets, cedar, tobacco and more. Not able to pick out anything like that in the wine, I stood in awe. That's when I knew I wanted to learn more, so I could talk about wine just like those experienced professionals.

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