couch + cork in-home wine tastings were born of a few things: a love of wine, the world’s best wine tasting meetup, and unemployment.

Nancy + Wine + Bennington = c + c

1. Nancy + Wine

When Nancy Koziol quit her job to start freelance writing in 2015 she literally fell into wine writing. The first freelance gig she picked up was writing a wine term glossary and then more and more wine-industry clients reached out. Within two years she would be approached by a publisher to write a book about homebrewing, her blog would receive notoriety and she was the guest on several podcasts, blogs and more. She quickly realized two things.

First, she had better learn a thing or two. FAST.

Second, she was completely seduced by wine. It wasn’t work to learn about it—she wanted to learn everything she could.

While taking Level 2 of Wines and Spirits Education Trust in Wine & Spirits (do not ask her about spirits… she knows nothing about them!) she wondered how the hell she was going to continue having practice days where she tasted 18 wines. That’s more open bottles than reasonable for two people and she hates to waste.

“Join your local wine tasting club!” her NYC-based instructor said. Her NYC-based instructor has clearly not been to rural America.

2. Wine + Bennington

“I don’t have a—” Nancy began. But if you know Nancy you know that where there’s a will, there’s a way. Less than one month later The Bennington Wine Tasting Meetup enjoyed it’s first ever event. In a little more than a year the group has grown to over 60 members who meet multiple times a month.

The wine tasting group is made up of a wide variety of people who have quickly formed friendships. And that has been the best part: the bonding over tastings whether led by Nancy, her right-hand woman, Linda, or a local hospitality pro.

Nancy was running the group in addition to working full time in marketing, freelancing and rescue wrangling (she and husband, Kris share their home with three rescue animals). But then her marketing company folded. She had time to plan better tastings using things like chart paper and marketing (20 years ago Nancy graduated from college and began her career as a seventh-grade teacher). In addition she had more time to speak to groups and teach some wine glasses. And everyone loved it.

With a knack for teaching, a serious knowledge of wine and plenty of time on her hands it only made sense to start the next phase of her wine life…

a grape night in!

couch + cork brings wine and knowledge into your home in a fun, unpretentious (seriously… no wine snobs allowed!) way. It’s not a sales group. No proprietary wines—everything can be purchased locally or online. Most importantly: you and your guests won’t be asked to do anything but have fun at our in-home wine tastings. No buying. No booking a party (although we do offer a discount if people are interested!). And no recruiting or team joining. Just come and learn about wine.

It’s a fun way to spend the night with friends over some wine learning as you go. It also makes a great fundraiser. Check out our many tasting options and get in touch today if you’d like to schedule your grape night in with couch + cork.

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