Friends of Ramsbottom start home wine tasting business

Two Ramsbottom entrepreneurs aim to bring the world into your life with a unique wine tasting experience.

The Touring Sommelier was co-founded by university friends Harriet Hoath and Chloe Carson, both 30 years old.

The company aims to offer winery tours organized from the comfort of its customers’ homes.

As part of the format, a host invites a small group of friends to their home for the evening, and the company organizes the rest, arriving in the evening with a selection of wines and dishes according to the night’s theme.

Typical themes offered as a ‘tour’ for the evening are ‘European’, ‘Southern Hemisphere’ and ‘Discovery’, all subtly and tastefully done to liven up the evening rather than lecture.

wine tasting. Photo: The Traveling Sommelier” alt=”Bury Times: Chloe and Harriet at a wine tasting. Photo: The Traveling Sommelier” class=”editor-image”/>Chloe and Harriet at a wine tasting. Photo: The Traveling Sommelier

The business was set up to help revelers avoid expensive parties and to respond to a shift in party culture post-lockdown.

This new culture gave rise to the “in-home” sommelier experience, something Harriet and Chloe embraced.

Chloé said: “We have always loved wine and the stories it can tell.

“For example, my favorite wine is a very dry cava, or a champagne if I’m feeling particularly fanciful, and it’s great to have a good understanding of what makes a good wine and why someone would want to invest in a bottle.

“Wine knowledge doesn’t have to be limited to a few aficionados, we’re delighted to be much more open about what we know.”

Bury Times: The two friends from college share a love of wine.  Photo: The Traveling Sommelier The two college friends and share a love of wine. Photo: The Traveling Sommelier

Before launching The Touring Sommelier, the two friends obtained demanding sommelier qualifications and obtained the necessary licenses, but already business is booming.

Harriet added: “We realized there was a critical gap in the market that we could address.

“We wanted to create experiences so that everyone could have access to the tastes, smells and stories of wines from around the world, and acquire a little oenological education, without having to leave the comfort of their own home.

“I primarily enjoy sweet wines, from Riesling to Sauternes, and I’ve spent a lot of time researching the science behind it. I certainly seem to enjoy the taste a lot more.

“Some want us for special occasions like birthday parties and there’s a lot of interest from small businesses who want something special this Christmas, but in reality given the savings on transport and a much more safe at home, we are also there for just a regular stress free and relaxed evening for a small group.”

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