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About me

About Ryan

My name is Ryan Vinson. I have been a software engineer for over 20 years and an independent consultant for at least 15 years. From as far back as I can remember, I’ve had an unquenchable thirst for knowledge and a curiosity for the world beyond my horizon.

Wine

My interest in wine started probably like most people – as a casual drinker. I first fell in love with Sangria about 20 years ago and then swiftly shifted towards other wines. My interest continued to escalate as I visited more and more wineries.

About 5 years ago my curious nature took control when I also started buying my own grapes and learned how to make wine at home. After a while, I felt it was important to fully understand the difference in varietals and styles of wine, so I enrolled in classes to enhance my general knowledge and palate.

Traveling

Just like most people, I enjoy traveling. I’ve also always been intrigued by other cultures. Maybe it was the National Geographic magazines I read as a child? Or maybe it was my childhood dream of becoming Indiana Jones?

At 8 years old I began trying to learn other languages and was convinced I would explore the world someday. Then I grew up and reality hit. Life, money, and obligations all got in the way. I had started making my list of places to visit at the age of 6, yet it wasn’t shrinking much at all.

So around 2008, I decided to change things. I prioritized my life and started focusing on my travel goals. I began Mandarin Chinese lessons and started taking solo immersion trips to different Chinese cities nearly every year.

During my travels, both domestic and international, I liked to discover locally made wines to taste. I found that I would much rather bring home a bottle of locally made wine than a plastic souvenir or T-shirt probably not even made in the place I was visiting. This was a way for me to bring home some of the culture I was visiting.

Yunnan Tasters

Combining my interests

I was reluctant to start this blog. The world doesn’t really need another travel or food blog. Mostly, I just wanted a way to keep track of the local wines I was trying. Plus, who knows, maybe there were other people interested in seeking out less common wines like myself.

So I decided to combine two of my interests: Wine and exploring the world.

Changyu Wines

What to expect

I’ll be posting tasting articles about the wines I’ve purchased while traveling as well as others I’ve just ordered online. As much as I would love to travel to every single location and buy a bottle, it’s simply not possible.

Just to be clear. I’m not a wine expert, a professional writer, nor a sommelier. I don’t get paid to write any of this. I just like wine and traveling. I’m an amateur trying to improve my skills.

I was originally just writing these posts as notes for myself to keep track of where I’ve been and what I learned. My wine tasting notes were also just for me to reference in the future as I improved.

It occurred to me that this blog could be a great motivator. It forces me to practice more and log what I taste. Theoretically, the more wine I taste, the better I should get at describing what I discover. If you’re looking for professional level tasting notes, I’d recommend Robert Parker. You will not find that here.

Why the videos? Well, it’s another level of pressure on myself. It forces me to be real in the moment as I learn about these wines. As a tech guy, it helps me to learn more about recording and editing videos. And finally, I want to be a better public speaker. This helps me practice that also. I just love learning and all of this forces me to push myself constantly.

If you are just as curious as I am about wines you don’t normally see at a wine shop, then please keep reading.

Anyway, I hope you enjoy my posts! Cheers!