Wine Industry Career Series: The Time is Right for Wine Jobs

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 By Karen Wetzel

WSET L3, NVWE, AWE, Career Coach

April 9, 2021

As our country re-opens and summer approaches, wine sales, and tourism are benefiting from pent-up demand to get out and socialize. This is leading to a huge surge in wine and wine-adjacent job postings. So, now is the time to start your search and find the wine job you’ve always wanted.   

During the shutdown, wineries, wine bars, and distributors were forced to furlough or lay off entire teams of employees. Some will be called back, but many of them found other work or relocated, and a few will opt to stay out of the job market for now, leaving a huge void for qualified applicants as companies start to rebuild their teams.

So, regardless of your level of experience or expertise, if you have been thinking about jumping into the wine industry, don’t wait another day. This is your window of opportunity. and are my go-to wine job search sites, but regardless of where you look, narrow your search by zip code, and expand your search with zip codes from larger neighboring cities as well.  Then, try important keywords to zero in on the type of job you want. Here are some popular positions, along with the best keywords to find the most opportunities.

👉 Winery Hospitality — These are “Front-of-the-house” jobs such as Tasting Room Host, Wine Guide, Wine Educator, or Tour Guide. Key search words should include: hospitality, educator, associate, attendant, host, tasting room, customer service, or guide.

👉 Winery Sales Direct to Consumer (DTC) sales managers work with club members – current, past and present – to engage their client base while increasing sales. This is done face-to-face at the wineries or via email, text, and phone.  Search for jobs containing the terms: DTC, direct, direct to consumer, winery concierge, club, wine club, sales.

👉 Distributor Sales — When restaurants closed to the dining public, it brought wine sales to a screeching halt and sales reps that called on these establishments were out of a job. Now, those teams are being rebuilt. Search for jobs containing the terms: sales, manager, wine sales, director, territory, region, area, account, chain, associate, on-premise, consultant, specialist.

👉 Wine Bar Staff – From servers to buyers to managers, Wine Bars are reopening too. Search for jobs containing the terms: wine bar, wine server, buyer, sales, bartender, educator, Sommelier.

This information should get you started, but check out some of our previous Wine Industry Career issues that will help as well:

Stay tuned for the next issue in our Wine Industry Career Series and we’ll help you decide if Home-Based Wine Sales is right for you.  

For personal, one-on-one career coaching visit us at  to schedule a session with one of our experienced mentors. To book a session with Karen Wetzel directly click here

Karen Wetzel is an employee of the Napa Valley Wine Academy.  The views expressed in this article are hers alone and may not reflect the views of the Napa Valley Wine Academy.





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