Kcuvée is a new kind of elevated wine school founded by best friends Katie Bean and Carolina Marin, who share a passion for wine, travel, and entertaining friends and family.
The name, Kcuvee comes from cuvee, a type, blend, or batch of wine, especially champagne and the K and C from KCuvee comes from the first initials of Katie Bean and Carolina Marin.
Together, they developed the Kcuvée curriculum that turns the formal wine seminar into the happiest of hours.
On January 23rd, they will be hosting a Wine Tasting/Educational Course for all level of wine enthusiasts that want to begin their wine journey.
At the Wine Tasting/Educational Course, guests will use all five senses to better understand wine and their own preferences. Through this course, you will gain all the tools you need to start your wine journey and enjoy the themed tastings we have developed for you, including:
- The main grape varieties and how to differentiate between them
- The basic principles of winemaking
- How to properly taste wine
- How to read wine labels and choose the wines you love
- Basic Wine Terminology
During this course, you will taste four different wines and you will receive a printed study guide where you will be able to take notes
Sat, January 23, 2021
1:30 PM – 4:00 PM EST
Edible Education Experience
operating the Emeril Lagasse Foundation Kitchen House & Culinary Garden
26 East King Street
Orlando, FL 32804
(The tables are socially-distanced and doors fully open to allow air flow)
Optional dinner following the tasting prepared by chef Kevin Fonzo.
Tasty Chomps’ Interview with Katie Bean + Carolina Marin, Founders of KCuvee
Tasty Chomps Tell us about yourselves and your respective backgrounds.
I grew up in England and travelled all over Europe at any early age. My family has always been very into entertaining and my mum had the best dinner parties, my dad was an entrepreneur. It was very natural for me to follow in their footsteps, I developed a passion for curating experiences and turned that passion into business. I love to create new concepts, or help others fulfill their dreams.
In 2013 I launched My VIP Tour, which is a concierge service specializing in Disney Vacations. In 2017 I launched a luxury travel agency called Katie Bean Travels to be able to offer the same high-end service we give here in Orlando but all over the world. My incredible teams at both businesses allow me to manage everything from the outside so I can do what I do best. In 2020 when the world came to a standstill, Carolina and I decided to join my 15+ years as an entrepreneur with her 15+ years in wine education, to create a course that’s both educational but also fun. I’m currently training under Carolina to learn everything I can about wine. It has been quite the journey! I live in Orwin Manner with my husband and two children, Henry & Rose.
I was born in Venezuela, graduated as a Bachelor in Business, completed my MBA part in IESA-Venezuela and part in Università Bocconi in Milan. I worked for multinational companies in Marketing and Project Management until started my first business: a wine and spirits distribution company. Enrolled at the Venezuelan Academy of Sommeliers, graduating as valedictorian in 2012.
Thirsty for more, I completed the WSET Level 2 at the L’EVS (l’Ecole des Vins et Spiritueux) in Paris, studying the course in French (Level 3 was later completed in London). I’m currently a WSET Diploma (Level 4) candidate and a French Wine Scholar candidate. I am also a certified WSET educator. Moved to the US in 2014, I’ve been happily married for 15 years to Jose, the love of my life, we have a precious 6-year old daughter named Caterina.
How did you two meet?
Katie: Carolina was the room mum in my daughter’s kindergarten class. When we met there was an instant spark and I immediately invited her to a dinner party I had been planning for months. I found out shortly before that she was a Sommelier so we had her open and serve a pinot noir from Burgundy that had been sitting in my father in laws basement for 25 years. It was a magical evening that led to many more fun evenings with delicious food and wine and the best conversation.
Tell us about the time(s) you first fell in love with wine?
I grew up in a country that had a very strong Spanish, Italian and Portuguese influence. Family gatherings are always about good food and wine. I can’t remember the first time I had wine but I do remember when I started loving it. While working for Diageo Colombia-Venezuela one of the projects was the launching of Santa Rita and Navarro Correas wines in Colombia.
Once I started to understand the magic behind food and wine pairing and how they make each other better when they are the right fit. I knew it was the beginning of my wine journey. My second Aha moment was in Milan, when I realized that I was missing part of the experience of living in Italy and traveling around Europe because I didn’t know enough about wine. That’s when I decided to join the Sommelier Academy. That experience completely transformed the way I travel, the way I entertain and the way I host and live my life. I haven’t stopped studying wine since then.
I can remember being at the Atlantis in the Bahamas when I was 18 years old. My dad and his friend were drinking Santa Margarita Pinot Grigio and asked me if I wanted a glass (the drinking age is 18 there). Pinot Grigio is so light and easy to drink that it was the first time I had really enjoyed wine. I remember how it made me feel, pinky up and all lol. Like most, my palate has changed drastically over the years and I now love more bold red wines but I’ll always remember that moment.
How did the concept of Kcuvee come about? What is Kcuvee for the new people out there? What do you hope to achieve through this new project?
Katie: Carolina has been studying wine for the past fifteen years and has always dreamed of having her own wine school. As an entrepreneur I thought it was a fantastic idea and believed it could be a huge success in Orlando. She would pick my brain for ideas and explain what the concept was but because of her training as a Som, it was very heavy on the educational part. I thought it needed to be a bit lighter and more approachable so that everyone in Orlando could enjoy it, not just people who wanted to join the industry. One day out of nowhere she said, “you just need to do this with me!”
It was an exciting concept I couldn’t refuse and so Kcuvee was born. It was a time where travel had come to a complete halt and I needed a new vehicle to drive my creativity so we poured ourselves into it. It was the best decision we have ever made.
I’ve never had a partner before so I was a little nervous but I couldn’t’ have found a better one. Carolina is so passionate about what she does and she’s very patient with me! lol We work extremely well together.
Kcuvee is a two part business, our focus is wine education but also wine consulting. Our goal is to take the traditional wine seminar that is sometimes boring and very heavy on theory and blend it with the more fun, light hearted wine tasting to create an event that is both fun and educational.
We have a very hands on approach that is interactive and gets the guests engaging their senses. We believe that the more you know about wine, the more you enjoy it but we want to educate our guests in a way that’s approachable. On the consulting side, we understand that not all restaurants have the luxury of having their own sommelier.
We believe that there is no five star dining experience without a great wine list, so we offer wine list consultation and staff training that helps the restaurant highlight it’s menu and enable it’s team to sell and pair accordingly.
Our overall goal is to truly elevate the wine scene here in Orlando which we believe is possible through education.
Tell us about the Wine and Spirits Education Trust (WSET) and the different levels and what they mean for the uninitiated?
Level 1 – Basic wine concepts. Basic service and wine pairing knowledge. Intensive fromat duration: 1 day
Level 2 – Key labeling terms, exploration of main grape varieties from main wine regions of the world. Intensive fromat duration: 3 days
Level 3 – The key factors in the production of wine: location, grape growing, winemaking, maturation and bottling and how the influence the style of the wine. Intensive fromat duration: 5 days
Level 4 – Wine production, wine business, still, sparkling and fortified wines in depth. Duration: 18 months – 3 years
For those looking to celebrate in 2021, what are some recommendations you may have for those looking for wine and spirits?
Wow we have so many favorites but here are a few:
Foss Marai Prosecco – Italy
Segura Viudas Cava – Spain
Bollinger Champagne – France
Ruinart Rosé Champagne – France
Villa Cavarena Ripasso Della Valpolicella – Veneto, Italy – Light, fruity and easy to drink
Ehlers Estate Cabernet – Napa, US – Big and bold
Decelle Villa Nuits-Saint-Georges – Burgundy, France – For Pinot Noir lovers
Marques de Riscal Reserva or Gran Reserva – Rioja, Spain – Perfectly balanced red wine
Cloudy Bay Sauvignon Blanc – Marlborough, New Zealand – Light, crisp and refreshing
Louis Jadit Meursault – Burgundy, France – For Chardonnay lovers
Mauro Sebaste – Gavi – Piedmont, Italy – Fascinating white grape grown only in Italy
Elio Perrone Moscato D’Asti – Piedmont, Italy – For sweet wine lovers
Thanks to Katie and her husband, I have recently become a huge fan of Old Fashioned’s. They have a secret recipe they use and the drink is delicious. For anyone that enjoys bourbon it’s a tasty treat.
Don’t be surprised to see a spirits course from us later in the year.
What do you have planned for Kcuvee for 2021?
This year it’s all about spreading the word, creating brand awareness and building our network. We have joined FRLA (Florida Restaurant and Lodging Association), the Winter Park Chamber of Commerce and plan to dedicate time to networking and events. We will have two scheduled courses each month at the Emeril Lagasse Foundation Kitchen House & Culinary Garden but custom/private events will be our focus this year. Our goal is to create tailor made private events for Corporate clients and individuals looking to entertain and wow their clients, team or friends. We also plan to incorporate travel into our year so that our guests can visit wineries and restaurants with us.
Personal and business resolutions for 2021?
Personal: become better at Yoga, do more outdoor activities with the family and get a dog for my daughter
Business: become a WSET provider, establish a network of corporate clients and create a wine guide.
Personal: I want to support my community as much as possible, shop local, and give back more. And to travel again!
Business: To gain my level 2 and 3 WSET certificates and roll out two food and wine curated trips. We currently have a four day Napa trip in the works for early summer as well as an eight day trip to France where we will visit Burgundy and Beaujolais.
What are some things you learned in 2020?
Even under the worst circumstances, amazing things can happen and it all depends on you. 2020 made us stronger, our creativity flourished and we were able to reinvent ourselves. We started a beautiful in person wine academy in the middle of a pandemic. The results and the receptivity of people has been overwhelming. we are beyond grateful.
What is your current favorite drink right now? What do you like to pair with those drinks?
That’s a hard question to answer, we like all wines and most food. We enjoy a New Zealand Sauvignon blanc with mussels as much as we enjoy a steak with Cabernet or a chocolate cake with a glass of Tawny Port. It’s all about the occasion, the food and the company. There’s a perfect wine for each occasion.
Whether you’re looking to have a fun night out with friends and loved ones, entertain your clients, or simply have a curiosity to learn more about wine, Kcuvée provides an education that will unlock your palate and change the way you sip Shiraz and taste Tempranillo.
Kcuvee Wine Education & Consulting
“Your Endless Journey to Wine Enjoyment”
(407) 409 6756