Airing between regular episodes of the VinePair Podcast, “Next Round” explores the ideas and innovations that are helping drinks businesses adapt in a time of unprecedented change. As the coronavirus crisis continues and new challenges arise, VP Pro is in your corner, supporting the drinks community for all the rounds to come. If you have a story or perspective to share, email us at podcast@vinepair.com

In this “Next Round,” VinePair CEO Adam Teeter speaks with 12-year NFL veteran and Super Bowl champion Will Blackmon about his venture called the Wine MVP. Described as “a unique gateway into the world of fine wine through the lens of professional sports,” the Wine MVP’s two primary services are personal wine buying for clients and a highly curated monthly wine club.

Blackmon talks about his journey into wine, from drinking cheap wine with buddies in college, to tasting fine wine at football events, to the moment he realized he wanted to get serious about selling wine himself. Blackmon took a very hands-on approach to his wine education, not only tasting wine often, but also working in a Virginia vineyard, taking WSET wine classes, and interning for a wine retailer in his spare time.

Blackmon emphasizes the importance of making wine less intimidating. For his own wine club, Blackmon talks about providing high-quality wine with relatable descriptions and approachable learning opportunities. He utilizes Instagram Live and YouTube to educate his wine club members, and even includes tailgate food pairings with the wine selections.

For now, Blackmon enjoys teaching, sharing, and educating others on wine through the Wine MVP. Moving forward, he intends to expand the business, curating wine-region trips for athletes and other interested consumers.

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