The wine industry is a massive industry with several different career options to suit different types of people. Whether it is physically dealing with the wine or simply selling the wine – there is something out there for anyone. Here we have a list of the most common wine jobs, and what each entails. No matter what job you want, here is your first step: take a wine course at America’s top-rated wine school.
In The Winery
One of the ultimate wine jobs. A winemaker is in charge of the complete production of the wine – from the time of the harvest, through to the production and the bottling.
General requirements: most wineries require a Masters in Viticulture and previous experience in wine production, although some winemakers begin with an Advanced Sommelier Certification instead. Apart from that, the individual would require a distinct wine-palate to be able to make the best quality wines.
- Regular checking of the vineyards and wine to monitor the readiness of grapes for picking and the wine for bottling.
- Adding all wine additives and yeast – and monitoring the fermentation process.
- Maintaining any records required for legal purposes.
Estimated salary: A winemaker could expect to make around $93,000 annually.
Winemaker assistants are the right hand of the winemaker; overseeing the smaller jobs the winemaker doesn’t have time to attend to. General requirements: Generally, most wineries require Bachelors in Science or Fermentation Science as well as having an immaculate wine palate.
- Create daily work lists and schedules and train any staff involved in the wine-making process.
- Monitor and uphold quality control of the wine and inventory.
- Conduct regular lab analysis.
- Help the winemaker monitor the wine throughout the process.
Estimated salary: An assistant winemaker could expect to earn $67,000 annually.
A Cellar Master is in charge of the health, safety and cleanliness of the cellar and everyone involved. General requirements: Generally, most wineries require a Bachelor of Science in winemaking, agriculture, or engineering – and almost always require previous experience in the position.
- Supervise the health and cleanliness of the cellars and staff.
- Schedule and monitor maintenance and deep-cleaning of the cellar.
- Manage the transport and shipping of the wine; and the conditions of the bottling and storage.
Estimated salary: A Cellar Master could expect to earn $40,000 annually.
Tasting Room Manager
Tasting room managers are in charge of overseeing day-to-day activities and staff members in the tasting room. General requirements: For this position, good wine knowledge is generally a requirement – as well as the ability to think on your feet, deal efficiently with complaints and managing staff members.
- Ensuring staff are working effectively.
- Ensuring target sales are made.
- Dealing with any complaints.
- Controlling stock and inventory and manage the daily opening and closing of the room.
Estimated salary: A Tasting Room Manager could expect to earn $36,000 annually.
In the Restaurant
The primary job of a sommelier is to provide customers in a restaurant with a great recommendation of wine to be enjoyed with their meal. General requirements: Generally, a Sommelier Certificate is required to apply for this job, as well as a great palate and the ability to recognize quality wine.
- Selecting a quality wine for the menu.
- Purchasing wine and managing the inventory.
- Training and informing waiting-staff about the wines.
Estimated salary: A qualified, entry-level Sommelier could expect to make around $60,000 annually.
In the Wine Shop
Wine Shop Manager
A position as a wine shop manager would require you to do all the activities involved in running a small retail shop. General requirements: Usually No formal education is required, but wine knowledge and previous experience would be advised. For wine professionals in Pennsylvania: Get a Wine Job in PA
- Keep control of inventory and order stock as needed.
- Assist customers with purchases.
- Negotiate and discuss any new wines or promotions for the store with Sales Reps.
- Opening and closing of the store – as well as the general cleaning.
Estimated salary: Some wine stores are commission based – but the average salary is $45,000.
The Wine Supply Sector
Wine Sales Representative
Whether it is to large wholesalers or small boutique wine stores, a sales representative’s job is quite literally, to sell wine. General requirements: Formal education is rarely required – however, previous experience with a stable track record in sales is often a necessity.
- Introducing stores to the brands of wine the rep represents.
- Following up on existing customers about the wine sales.
- Often times the delivery of the wine to the stores is required.
- Offering promotions and tastings of the wines.
Estimated salary: A sales rep salary is largely commission based, but the average salary will range from $35,000 to $100,000 annually.
Other Wine Jobs
A wine journalist’s job is to write about a certain type of wine, brand or winery. This could be freelance work, for a personal blog, or wine reviews in a magazine.In order to do this, a great palate and experience in the industry would push your credibility higher. The amount of money earned depends completely on the type of work, place and frequency of articles.
For those who are more hands-on, a wine cooper might just be the career to go into. A Cooper physically makes the barrels, buckets and containers used during wine production. An intense understanding of woodwork – and the ability to do the physical labor is essential.
So, whether you have a way with persuading people to purchase wine, or have a skill in reviewing wine, the wine industry has endless opportunities waiting. Just consider your current skills, the skills you need to get the job you want and do what you need to gain that experience!
It’s quite simple – and in this industry – truly rewarding.