Interview with Alessandra Esteves
She was a corporate lawyer before transitioning into the wine business in 2012. Since then, Alessandra Esteves has been a influent personality in Florida’s wine booming scene. Few days before the UGCB Tasting in Miami (18th January 2024), let’s meet a huge fan of Bordeaux Grand Crus.
Hi Alessandra, Nice to meet you. Could you introduce yourself in a few words?
My name is Alessandra Esteves, I am a wine educator and wine buyer based in Miami. I own Florida Wine Academy and 305 Wines, together with my husband. I have the Diploma in Wine & Spirits, I am an official Bordeaux tutor and I am currently doing the Stage 2 Practical only of the Master of Wine.
What is your personal story with wine? How did it begin?
I am originally from Brazil, but moved to Germany in 2004 for work. I travelled through multiple French and European wine regions and begin exploring wines. A few years later, I decided to take a break from my career as a lawyer and started writing about wine.
"Bordeaux was always a passion of mine, and my wine life changed when I attended Bordeaux Primeurs 2015."
Which part played Bordeaux in your wine education?
Bordeaux was always a passion of mine, and my wine life changed when I attended Bordeaux Primeurs 2015. Since then, I have been going to Bordeaux every year, training the wine industry and wine lovers and promoting the region thru classes and events at Florida Wine Academy. Our independent wine shop in Miami, called 305 Wines, received an award from Wine-Searcher for Bordeaux wine list.
What does Bordeaux and the Grands Crus represent for you?
Bordeaux represents a traditional, reliable wine region and the Grands Crus are the epitome of quality and ageability to expect in a wine. It always surprises me to taste back vintages, where the wines still show fruit, freshness and potential. I visited many properties and met with great winemakers during my visits. I was lucky to meet the Cazes family on the first Primeur I attended, and since then we stayed connected. I also attended the inauguration of the new cellars at Lynch-Bages. It was an unforgettable night with special food, and incredible vintages of Lynch Bages.
Could you tell us more about the wine culture in Florida, is Miami a wine city?
C’est une excellente question ! Je suis à Miami depuis 8 ans et la scène viticole a beaucoup changé depuis mon arrivée. Les gens sont maintenant plus éduqués et les restaurants ont une sélection incroyable de vins. Depuis la pandémie, la Floride a également reçu un afflux de passionnés de vin venus d'autres régions du pays, ce qui a relevé le niveau. Aujourd'hui, je peux affirmer en toute confiance que Miami est une ville de vins. Qu'il s'agisse de collectionneurs, d'amateurs ou de curieux, tous veulent goûter les Grands Crus et en apprendre davantage sur eux. Ces jours-ci, l’UGCB organise une dégustation à Miami. L’événement promet de se dérouler à guichets fermés.
I have been in Miami for 8 years and wine scene has changed a lot since then. People are now more educated and restaurants have incredible selection of wines. Since the pandemic, Florida also received an influx of wine enthusiasts from other parts of the country, raising the standards. Today, I can confidently say that Miami is a wine city. From collectors, to enthusiasts, to wine curious, they all want to taste and learn about the Grands Crus. These days we’re having the UGCB in Miami, which promises to be a sold out event.