Hi Everyone…

Thanks for visiting. This site is the home base for The Grapes Unwrapped. The Grapes Unwrapped is my tv show, it is my wine events business (formerly Swirl Wine Events) and it is a free flowing conversation on all things related to wine. I am a wine educator. That is the foundation of my events and my tv show, but its not like being in school, because to me, wine is fun, it is social, it is personal, it is connective. It is something you share with family and friends, with or without good food. My approach has been referred to as “infotainment”.

I am in many ways like you…first and foremost, a fan and consumer of wine. I have taken courses, taught courses, read a bunch, written a bunch, tasted a whole bunch. My history in wine goes back to childhood, the grandson of immigrants. Wine was on the table most nights (and what I snuck in as an altar boy). The next fortunate turn was attending Cornell University, where I not only got to visit Finger Lakes wineries, but take a wine class, and get college credit for it! A trip to meet extended family in Alsace Lorraine in my early 20s gave me a deeper appreciation and then, a stint as a “teaching assistant” at a wine school in New York, and I knew I would some day be self-employed in some capacity with wine.

I am a “free agent” in that I am not specifically affiliated with any professional entity in the wine industry. It allows me to develop and maintain a broad range of relationships. I primarily come from the consumer side of business but have consulted with retailers, wholesalers, importers, restaurants and winemakers. I speak, I write, I judge wine contests, I set up and run events, I do tv, video and radio, and soon, will start running wine-themed trips. I am passionate about wine and other interests that tie into it, and I am drawn to people in all aspects of the business, including consumers, who are similarly passionate.

I do promise this…if you hang around The Grapes Unwrapped, whether it be this site, one of my events or my show, you’ll walk away having learned something about wine. So, stop by for a bit. Ask questions. Make comments. Share your passion.

Hank Zona
The Grapes Unwrapped