A SOUTHSEA wine enthusiast who posts wine reviews on Instagram plans to open her own shop after qualifying as a sommelier.
Lucy Reynolds, 34, from Southsea, previously worked in corporate marketing production based in London, but when the pandemic caused her to work from home she decided to pursue her interest in wines.
Lucy started a sommelier course in October 2020 and graduated last summer, which has allowed her to become a fully qualified wine connoisseur. She said that over lockdown she decided she wanted to invest her time into something she really enjoyed.
Last October Lucy took part in Abri’s ‘Create’ self employment training course, which is supported by Portsmouth Council and aims to help people set up their own businesses by giving them all the tools and information they need. Abri award-winning “Create” course is FREE and provides a step-by-step guide covering the fundamentals of self-employment and what any new entrepreneur should ideally be considering at an early stage. It covers legalities, financials, marketing, branding, how to create a business model and how self-employment effects benefits. To find out more email email@example.com
Lucy Reynolds said, ” I’ve always liked wine but it has stemmed from travelling to different places and understanding the local produce from that area. When we were going through the whole lockdown situation it made me think that when I come out of this I need something that’s for me, and if I did a sommelier course it would teach me about something I’m interested in.’
Lucy started an Instagram page over lockdown where she shares her favourite wines and gives reviews with her new knowledge as a sommelier. She said that taking part in the course gave her more confidence to share her business venture online.
Lucy said ‘My posts are generally just a breakdown of what it tastes like, what you can smell and the aromas and why I like it too, so it’s a bit more personal. I’ve also been doing a Wednesday wine of the week which has been good and quite well received too.’
She also joined the Federation of Small Businesses which she said has been amazing for support and networking opportunities. Through the course, Lucy was encouraged to set up a Crowdfunder and managed to raise £1,000 to start bringing her business idea to life.
Lucy plans to open a shop in Southsea with her brand Wines by the Sea in the coming months, and hopes to work with Wickham Vineyard, Hambledon Vineyard and other Hampshire businesses.