Wine for Normal People with Elizabeth Schneider



Welcome to episode 51!

In today’s episode, I’m chatting with Elizabeth Schneider, who has just published her first book called Wine for Normal People.

Elizabeth is the award-winning host of one of the popular wine podcasts, Wine for Normal People. She’s also a Certified Sommelier by the Court of Master Sommeliers, a Certified Specialist of Wine by the Society of Wine Educators, and co-founder of Underground Wine Events, which brings together wine lovers with terrific, small wineries, and a public speaker on wine around the US.

She’s the author of the forthcoming book, Wine For Normal People, to be published by Chronicle Books this November 2019. She also holds an MBA from the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill and has worked for one of the largest wineries on their marketing and training programs.

She talks and thinks about wine in a practical, often tongue-and-cheek way and her info-packed classes and tastings are always informative and fun, never overwhelming and dry.

If you’d like to get a free copy of my Ultimate Food & Wine Pairing Guide, just email me at [email protected] and let me know what you like about the podcast and what I can do to improve it for you.

I’m getting amazing feedback from wine lovers who are taking my new, free online video wine class called The 5 Wine & Food Pairing Mistakes that Can Ruin Your Dinner and how to fix the forever. You’ll learn about that plus about my new in-depth, paid course called The Wine Smart Course: A Full-Bodied Framework to Taste, Pair and Buy Wines like a Pro.

Before we dive into the show, I’d like to give a shout out to Betsy Payne Watson from Chelsea, Michigan, who emailed me to say: “What a great podcast as usual. I found it rather surprising that Texas has such a large acreage of land devoted to vineyards. I do not believe I have ever had a Texas wine which is rather surprising given all the business trips I made to Texas while I was working. I have a friend who winters in Texas, thus I plan to discuss this with her the next time we talk. Take care! Have a good week. Bets

Bets, I’m so glad you enjoyed episode 46! I know you’re going to enjoy this one with Elizabeth. On with the show!

You can watch the video version of this conversation here.


Well, there you have it! Here are my takeaways from this terrific discussion with Elizabeth:

1. I love Elizabeth’s take on who normal people are when it comes to wine: those whose lives aren’t consumed reading big wine tomes, but who love the beverage.

2. Elizabeth has an interesting perspective on the Master of Wine and Master Sommelier programs being less of a professional designation and more like a small, private club, particularly when the pass rate is only 3-7% and much of the esoteric wine knowledge doesn’t get put into practical use by sommeliers when dealing with restaurant customers.

3. Elizabeth’s new book, Wine for Normal People, is a must buy! Her tips are so practical, yet so memorable with analogies like the dog and wolf to explain wine versus table grapes, or wearing a jacket in the summer for regions that make zesty, crisp wines due to a cool climate.

4. We both have a love of history and colourful stories, like how Dom Perignon would turn over in his grave about the bubbles in Champagne.


What was your favourite tip or quote from this episode? Share that with me on Twitter or Facebook and tag me @nataliemaclean, on Instagram I’m @nataliemacleanwine.

If you liked this episode, please tell a friend about it, especially one who would enjoy Elizabeth’s smart wine tips. My podcast is easy to find, whether you search Google on its name Unreserved Wine Talk, or on my name.

Finally, if you want to take your ability to pair wine and food to the next level, join me in a free online video class at

I can’t wait to share more wine stories with you next week.

Thank-you for taking the time to listen to this one. I hope something great is in your glass this week, perhaps while you’re reading Wine for Normal People!



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  • You’ll find my books here, including Unquenchable: A Tipsy Quest for the World’s Best Bargain Wines and Red, White and Drunk All Over: A Wine-Soaked Journey from Grape to Glass.
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