Wine Media and Events Specialist
A Cork in the Road, LLC uses wine as a platform for connecting and communicating with wine enthusiasts, novices, professionals, travelers, etc. Through designing wine events, teaching wine classes, producing audio journalism, and creating social media adventures, we help people develop skills to explore their own tastes in wine.
Writes articles and creates digital media for wine travel and education
Customizes events for private clients both in-person and virtually
Designed and retails a leather wine handbag with an insulated pocket
Interviews people shaping the Southeast wine industry and beyond
Founder of A Cork in the Road, LLC / Host of "The A Cork in the Road" Podcast
Born in Minnesota, Kelly holds a Masters in Exercise Physiology and completed a study abroad program in Argentina during her undergraduate studies in Kinesiology. While pursuing her career in public health, however, she simultaneously fell in love with wine and has since accumulated 10+ years of wine industry education and experience.
From 2011 - 2013, she worked for a South African winemaker while managing a winery in the Shenandoah Valley of Virginia learning all aspects of wine production and tasting room sales. Since then, her interest in the people, places, and history of wine has taken her biking to wineries in Mendoza, exploring tasting rooms in Napa and Sonoma, learning about Gamay vines in Beaujolais, meeting with producers in Northern Rhône, studying Pinot Noir in Burgundy, expanding perceptions of Port in Portugal, and discovering the diversity of microclimates in the Willamette Valley.
After founding A Cork in the Road, LLC in 2018, she has contributed to wine and travel publications, designed multi-course wine pairing dinners for restaurants, produced 100+ episodes of the "A Cork in the Road" podcast, and partnered with retailers to create a wide variety of unique education experiences. She continues to share the joy of all things wine through custom tastings, virtual classes, and Wine vs Beer adventures.
Wine Pocket Handbag Designer
with P. Sherrod & Co. in Atlanta, GA
Partnership with P. Sherrod & Co. began in Atlanta, GA when Donna was planning a fashion show for her line of leather handbags in the fall of 2018. She found Kelly by searching online for a wine educator who could pair wines to several ensembles for the show. At the event, Kelly selected wines based on the style of each look to serve to guests as each model walked the runway. It was a sold-out success and sparked ideas for further collaboration.
Kelly recognized a need among wine lovers for a more practical yet stylish way to carry wine bottles between events, and Donna had the skills and resources to facilitate a design and manufacturing process. Their teamwork guided each wine-loving detail and business decision that has led to the launch of their co-branded specialty handbag for wine lovers.
The first Fall Collection in 2021 sold out, but now after launching several new colors, we have grown to establish retail partners in Georgia, Pennsylvania, and California as well as have inventory available for sale through Wine Enthusiast Magazine.
CONTACT US with interest in fashion event collaboration or wholesale partnership.
The "A Cork in the Road" Podcast highlights people who are shaping the Southeast wine industry and beyond.
Or search for "A Cork in the Road" wherever you get your podcasts.
To honor incredible people and share inspiring stories, this podcast shines a light on those who are inspiring education and truly setting the bar in the industry. This series goes behind the wine so you can meet the distributors, retailers, educators, beverage managers, etc. who are shaping the wine market.
Recipient of The Hue Society's
"2023 Podcast of the Year" Award
We are currently producing ~3 episodes each month. Recent guests include:
Episode 116 - Lindsey Fragalle, Retail Sales Specialist for Brookhaven Wines
Episode 117 - Eric S. Crane, Director of Training for Empire Distributors, Inc.
Episode 118 - Winemaker Pepe Raventós, Can Sumoi and Raventós i Blanc
Episode 119 - Francis Coligado, Beverage Director for Nooshe Jan Group
All episodes from Seasons 1-6 are also still available. Share and write us a review. You can also make a monthly contribution on Anchor's platform.
Join us for a ticketed wine education and exploration experience - follow @acorkintheroad for all updates and event announcements
Sunday, December 17, 2:00-5:00pm
Join us for a prestigious, high-stakes competition designed to celebrate the art of wine and the mastery of sommeliers, while also being open to passionate wine aficionados. This unique event will bring together teams of three industry professionals and wine aficionados, who will compete in a series of rigorous challenges encompassing wine theory, service, and the nerve-wracking blind tasting. Spectators can watch the competition unfold, enjoy tastings of fine wines, and learn from the challenges presented. Points will be awarded for each challenge, and the team with the highest total score at the end of the event is crowned the Sommlympics champion.
Wine Events and Education
We host and design wine events for retailers and restaurants - some of our most popular ticketed tasting and event topics include:
Wine vs Beer Data Dinners
Wine Pairing Dinners
Palate Training and Wine Structure Workshop
"PINKies Up" Rosé Exploration
How to Navigate a Local Wine Shop
Discover Small Producers of Sonoma Valley
Discover Small Producers of Virginia
Discover Small Producers of Willamette Valley
Old- vs. New-World Blind Tasting
U.S. Expressions of Classic Grape Varieties
Available for reporting assignments and media bookings
OR... LEAVE A MESSAGE
Custom event inquiries, media bookings, product review requests, etc.