Mick Descamps

12/19 Advanced Sommelier Mick Descamps

Mick Descamps

Keeper Collection @keepercoll: Welcome to #SommChat everyone! Tell your friends to join us to learn from #Somm @MickDescamps talking about #wine and more!

Keeper Collection @keepercoll: We’d like to introduce you to Advanced #Somm @MickDescamps #SommChat

Keeper Collection @keepercoll: We're about ready to dive in w/questions, so shout out to Mick Descamps @MickDescamps to say hello & so he knows you're here! #WineWednesday #SommChat

Mick Descamps @MickDescamps: I am ready and excited to begin the chat!! #sommchat

Keeper Collection @keepercoll: Don't forget that EVERY tweet during this chat should include the #SommChat hashtag in order for everyone to see it!

Keeper Collection @keepercoll: As we ask @MickDescamps our Qs, you can ask Mick your Qs as well! He'll do his best to answer all Qs in the order they come #SommChat

Keeper Collection @keepercoll: W so many participants lots of gr8 Q's R asked! Even if u dont ask 1--give a S/O 2 @keepercoll & @MickDescamps 2 let us know u R here! #SommChat

Keeper Collection @keepercoll: Let's start talking #wine with @MickDescamps #WineWednesday #SommChat

Keeper Collection @keepercoll: Q fr #SommChat #Somm what advantage in a #wine career do you think there is doing #retail - have you done other gigs as well in the biz @MickDescamps

Mick Descamps @MickDescamps: good question. I began as a restaurant somm and transitioned to this after a decade. As a father retail allows me...#sommchat

Mick Descamps @MickDescamps: ...with family. It is a very different part of the business but it is worth it. #sommchat

Keeper Collection @keepercoll: @MickDescamps How did you start in the #wine business? #SommChat

Mick Descamps @MickDescamps: I began a couple decades back as a server while I was in college. My first real wine gig came as part of MS Madeline Triffon wine team. #sommchat

Keeper Collection @keepercoll: Q fr #SommChat #Somm why did you choose the @MasterSommUS program rather than the MW @MickDescamps ? Since you work in retail how do you keep your service skills up?

Mick Descamps @MickDescamps: I started down the CMS path while in restaurants. I work the floor a few times per year still #sommchat

Keeper Collection @keepercoll: @MickDescamps what is like to experience @texsomiwa and what makes it great for #Sommeliers who can attend? #SommChat

Mick Descamps @MickDescamps: I absolutely love the TIWA retreat. The seminars are tremendous and hanging with somm friends is amazing #sommchat

Keeper Collection @keepercoll: Q fr #SommChat #Somm for @MickDescamps what is the most challenging and most rewarding things abt working in the retail side of wine? What are the hours like?

Mick Descamps @MickDescamps: the hours are more business oriented but include weekends. The focus may be different but it is still about taking care...

Mick Descamps @MickDescamps: ...of guests. One big difference is the power of brands and how much that affects consumers. #sommchat

Keeper Collection @keepercoll: @MickDescamps what advice would you give the Finalists in #SommsUF 2019 ? #SommChat

Mick Descamps @MickDescamps: SommsUF is such a great competition. I would tell them to relax, be loose and to expect a great time. #sommchat

Keeper Collection @keepercoll: @MickDescamps what do you think makes @TEXSOM Conference so special and valuable for #Sommeliers who can attend? #SommChat

Mick Descamps @MickDescamps: like TIWA This event brings industry pros together and allows them to taste, learn, and experience such a wide...

Mick Descamps @MickDescamps: ...spectrum of the wine world. Professional development never stops, and Texsom embodies this. #sommchat

Keeper Collection @keepercoll: @MickDescamps How have you seen the #wine world evolve since being in this industry, i.e. some of the biggest changes in the last 5 years? #SommChat

Mick Descamps @MickDescamps: it’s been exciting to see the revolutions happen in South Africa and Australia. Also excited to see how millennials are...

Mick Descamps @MickDescamps: ...experimenting with wines and not beholden to one category. #SommChat

Keeper Collection @keepercoll: @MickDescamps we know you love to #cook. Do you tend to select #wine first before you decide on a dish to cook or vice versa and if so why? #SommChat

Mick Descamps @MickDescamps: great question. I love cooking. It’s organic. I usually cook first and pair second. Special wines may change that #sommchat

Keeper Collection @keepercoll: Q fr #SommChat #Somm how would you describe the #wine consumer in #michigan and have you seen their buying patterns change and if so how @MickDescamps ?

Mick Descamps @MickDescamps: people here are still steeped in Midwest classics of big reds like Napa Cab but increasingly there is a push toward...

Mick Descamps @MickDescamps: ...wines from emerging regions like South Africa, Portugal, etc and the you get generation is drinking more across the board...

Mick Descamps @MickDescamps:

...not just sticking to one country or category. #sommchat

Keeper Collection @keepercoll: Q fr #SommChat #Somm Your @instagram account shows you have small children. When do you plan to start them on #wine to introduce them to your passion @MickDescamps ?

Mick Descamps @MickDescamps: my kids know I work in wine. Both of my older kids will smell what we are drinking. Always surprising to hear how...#SommChat

Mick Descamps @MickDescamps: ...articulate they are about they smell. With time I will expose them more. #sommchat

James Tidwell @winejames:.@MickDescamps Many sommeliers are passionate and geeky abt other subjects. You grow peppers and create products from those. Thoughts on what drives you to dive deep into multiple subjects? #SommChat

Mick Descamps @MickDescamps: I am a doer. If I decide I like something I commit. The whole chili thing kind of grew out of something small, planting chilis...

Mick Descamps @MickDescamps: ....once I discovered how well they grew in MI, I started experimenting with different varieties. Hot sauce came first and...

Mick Descamps @MickDescamps: ...spices came later. #sommchat

Keeper Collection @keepercoll: @MickDescamps What is something that you would like to see change or you would like to impact in the #wine world? #SommChat

Mick Descamps @MickDescamps: I would like to see more people trust themselves about what they like. I think scoring has been a guide but too few...#sommchat

Mick Descamps @MickDescamps: ...trust themselves about what they like. I would love to see more of an openness in experimenting with consumers. #sommchat

Keeper Collection @keepercoll: Q fr #sommChat #Somm what are some of your duties on the retail side each week and how do you decide to adjust your schedule according to overseeing multiple stores @MickDescamps

Mick Descamps @MickDescamps: I do a lot of juggling. Always moving around. I place orders on Monday and Tuesday and will bounce around between...#sommChat

Mick Descamps @MickDescamps: ..stores during the week. I will merchandise, help guests, develop and build events, manage the website. Never stops #sommchat

Keeper Collection @keepercoll: Q fr #SommChat #Somm I have trouble with how to schedule rep visits - how do you manage this to be the most efficient and do you have issues getting #wines you really want @MickDescamps

Mick Descamps @MickDescamps: I always communicate my availability with my reps. I try to set certain days as a meeting day each week. Regarding...#sommChat

Mick Descamps @MickDescamps: ...wines that might be difficult to get, I start as early as possible with the process of targeting them. I work...#sommchat

Mick Descamps @MickDescamps: ...with suppliers and importers to make sure we are doing enough to get the wines I need. It’s a moving process. #sommchat

Keeper Collection @keepercoll: #SommChat #Somm Question @MickDescamps How many #wines do you taste on average per day? Do you taste everyday or only certain days of the week for tasting?

Mick Descamps @MickDescamps: outside of the busy season, I am usually tasting everyday. 15-20 wines per day average. #sommchat

Keeper Collection @keepercoll: @MickDescamps we attended a #wine focused event recently where the conversation was about bottle variation in the same case (and not flawed just variation). Is this something you experience and what % of #wines R returned by customers? #SommChat

Mick Descamps @MickDescamps: yes. Bottle variation happens. We see it. It can be a certain wine discipline or because of storage conditions...#sommchat

Mick Descamps @MickDescamps: ...we see a small amount (less than 1%) returned. Usually because of corniness. Sometimes oxidation or variation. #sommchat

Keeper Collection @keepercoll: Q fr #SommChat #Somm @MickDescamps In your opinion, what are some of the most versatile #wine grapes and why?

Mick Descamps @MickDescamps: Chardonnay and Pinot are great canvases for winemaker and vineyard because they show so much range. Syrah as well...#sommchat

Mick Descamps @MickDescamps: ...Syrah can show multiple styles and can thrive in caries climates varying from powerful to sleek. #sommchat

Keeper Collection @keepercoll: @MickDescamps Where have you traveled for your career? Where do you want to go that you haven’t yet? #SommChat

Mick Descamps @MickDescamps: I grew up traveling a lot in Europe. I would love to check out Australia and South Africa #sommchat

Keeper Collection @keepercoll: Q fr #SommChat #Somm@MickDescamps What is the most exciting part of your job? Least interesting?

Mick Descamps @MickDescamps: I love doing tastings with guests. Specifically connecting people to new wines that they have not considered...#sommchat

Mick Descamps @MickDescamps: ...I thrive on passion and try to kindle that flame in people. Least exciting part is talking numbers with suppliers #sommchat

Keeper Collection @keepercoll: Q fr #SommChat #Somm can you share some of you fav #wine and #food pairings and those you absolutely want to avoid @MickDescamps

Mick Descamps @MickDescamps: I love champagne with everything! Hahaha. Cornas with short ribs and Barolo with braised pork. I try to avoid...#sommchat

Mick Descamps @MickDescamps:...huge Napa cabs with simply cooked steaks. It’s one of the classic mistakes. #sommchat

Keeper Collection @keepercoll: Q fr #SommChat #Somm do you have any suggestions on studying for theory that have helped you along the way and same for blind tasting @MickDescamps

Mick Descamps @MickDescamps: theory is all about knowing how you learn. For me it is visual. I write outlines and notecards. Others process...#sommchat

Mick Descamps @MickDescamps: ...others process info differently. Something by hearing or physically writing. The one key is repetition. Never be...#sommchat

Mick Descamps @MickDescamps: ...be cocky about what you know. There is no substitute for work. For blind practice is key. Not a sexy answer. #sommchat

Keeper Collection @keepercoll: Q fr #SommChat #Somm have you experienced a customer who is just trying to buy your #wine trophies and if so how do you handle that @MickDescamps

Mick Descamps @MickDescamps: yes. Trophy wines will only hit the sales floor if they are open; typically I sell them to collectors in advance. #sommchat

Keeper Collection @keepercoll: @MickDescamps if you were not in the #wine biz, what would be your Dream job? #SommChat

Mick Descamps @MickDescamps:my original career had me in microbiological research. My dream job beyond wine would be to run a dairy farm...#sommchat

Mick Descamps @MickDescamps: ...where I can still grow vegetables. #sommchat

Keeper Collection @keepercoll: Q fr #SommChat #Somm would you share some of your PQR #wines that would work well as BTG on a bistro #wine list @MickDescamps

Mick Descamps @MickDescamps: good question. A couple I’d include would be Vajra’s Langhe Rosso and Domaine Jomain Bourgogne Blanc. Both killer. #sommchat

Keeper Collection @keepercoll: Q fr #SommChat #Somm how often do you have consumer tastings and do you find it truly results in sales of those #wines that you are showing @MickDescamps

Mick Descamps @MickDescamps: I usually run tastings weekly. Most of these are walkaround style events. They always sell if people are having fun...#sommchat

Mick Descamps @MickDescamps: ...one thing I have found that sales are typically inversely proportional to group size #sommchat

Keeper Collection @keepercoll: Q fr #sommChat #Somm what techniques do you use to train your #wine retail floor staff and how often do you have training @MickDescamps

Mick Descamps @MickDescamps: beyond the basics of theory I make sure to emphasize listening to the guest. Always try to sell something you have...#w

Mick Descamps @MickDescamps: ...always try to sell while the guest is here in the store. A request about a certain wine may open a larger...#sommchat

Mick Descamps @MickDescamps: ...conversation toward other categories. Emphasizing the importance of hospitality is something I key in on a lot. #sommchat

Keeper Collection @keepercoll: Q fr #SommChat #Somm how do you juggle #retail work, #wine studies, father, husband, cook, farmer @MickDescamps

Mick Descamps @MickDescamps: seriously good question. Hahaha. I don’t know! I keep it one day at a time. Not easy that’s for sure. #sommchat

Keeper Collection @keepercoll: Q fr #SommChat #Somm is it hard to get #winemakers to visit your area and/or hard to get allocations of #wines in #michigan - don’t know the laws @MickDescamps

Mick Descamps @MickDescamps: I struggle to get allocated items like in any market, but if we are working in the proper channels we earn these...#sommchat

Mick Descamps @MickDescamps: ...earn these wines. Never perfect though. Being on the outskirts of Detroit and near Chicago we see a lot of...#sommchat

Mick Descamps @MickDescamps: ...a lot of winemakers here. Like with allocated wines it is about planning ahead of time to make sure you see them #sommchat

Keeper Collection @keepercoll: Q fr #SommChat #Somm can you share some of your fav #Champagnes that won’t totally break the bank @MickDescamps

Mick Descamps @MickDescamps: for grower fizz I love the Reserve from Andre Clouet ($40) and for NM, the Brut Res from Charles Heidsieck ($50)...#SommChat

Mick Descamps @MickDescamps: ...is killer. #sommchat

Keeper Collection @keepercoll: Time to wrap up! Hope you enjoyed this hour of #wine talk with @MickDescamps #WineWednesday #SommChat

Mick Descamps @MickDescamps: thank you so much for letting me do this today!!! Lot of fun. Signing off

Keeper Collection @keepercoll: It was great to have Mick @MickDescamps join us today for #SommChat. We hope everyone learned as much as we did! #WineWednesday

Keeper Collection @keepercoll: Please join us in thanking Advanced #Sommelier Mick Descamps @MickDescamps for his time #SommChat