Views #92 | Low-Intermediate 4


Sandra is a wine columnist. She gives tips about choosing a wine.

Todd: Now, Sandra, hello!

Sandra: Hello!

Todd: Now, you are a wine connoisseur. Or wine teacher. No!

Sandra: Not really!

Todd: Not really?

Sandra: A wine connoisseur. No, that's sort of a snobby.

Todd: Oh, really?

Sandra: Yes.

Todd: Oh, OK. So, how would you describe what you do?

Sandra: A wine professional.

Todd: A wine professional. OK, so what does a wine professional do?

Sandra: Try to make money from wine.

Todd: OK.

Sandra: So, I'm a wine writer, a wine columnist. I teach wine.

Todd: OK, so let's say if I'm going to have friends over, and I'm making let's say steak. I'm having a grilling steak. Can I serve wine with steak?

Sandra: Yes. Steak goes with almost any red wine.

Todd: Oh, really. OK. So, red. How about if I want to mix wines. Is it OK to go red wine, white wine?

Sandra: You always start out with white wines going towards red wines.

Todd: OK, always go white wine first, then the red wine. (Yes) OK, and how about for dessert. Is there a special dessert wine?

Sandra: There are many great dessert wines, so it depends on what you like, how sweet you like and what you're making for dessert.

Todd: OK, so how about I'm making terimisu.

Sandra: Terimisu, then I would probably have a tawny port, either from Portugal or from Australia, which makes great ports, or you might even go for a fruity and oaky zinfandel, which is dry wine from California.

Todd: OK, nice. How much will that cost me?

Sandra: Depends on how much you want to spend. For a port, a tawny port, anywhere in between 3,500 to 10,000 (OK) And for a California Zinfandel, a good one probably about 3,000 (yen).

Todd: 3,000. I think I can maybe afford that. Not much. And, how about what would be a good wine to start off for like appetizers or with a salad or something like that.

Sandra: I always start off with a sparkling wine.

Todd: A sparkling wine.

Sandra: Yes. I prefer champagne but if you can't afford it, even though champagne is the lowest price anywhere in the world is in Japan

Todd: Oh, really.

Sandra: And many of my students load up on cases of champagne and have it sent home by their companies container.

Todd: Oh, wow.

Sandra: Yes. But champagne is a good starter.

Learn vocabulary from the lesson!

wine connoisseur

Are you a wine connoisseur or a wine teacher?

A 'connoisseur' is an expert about something, usually having to do with food, drink or art.  Notice the following:

  1. Traveling has turned me into quite a connoisseur of different types of food.
  2. I think of myself as a coffee connoisseur.


I'm not a wine connoisseur; that's sort of snobby.

If a person is 'snobby' they act like they are too good for average or normal things.  A person can be snobby towards other people or about certain things like clothes or food. Notice the following:

  1. My friend can be kind of snobby, but I promise she's a good person.
  2. She is very snobby about the food she eats.

make money

I try to make money from wine.

When you receive money for doing or selling something you are 'making money' from that. Notice the following:

  1. His company makes a lot of money selling plastic products.
  2. Can you really make money selling wine?

goes with

Steak goes with almost any red wine.

If a wine 'goes with' a food it complements or enhances the flavor of that food. They taste good together. Notice the following:

  1. I need a wine to go with the seafood I'm making.
  2. What goes well with this soup?

start off

I always start off with a sparkling wine.

If you 'start off' with something you have it or do it at the beginning. Notice the following:

  1. He always starts off his day with a cup of coffee.
  2. We will both start off with a bowl of soup.


Answer the following questions about the interview.

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Vocabulary Challenge

Complete the sentences with the words below.
connoisseur • snobby • make money
go with • start off
  1. He is always thinking of new ways to .
  2. He loves to eat and is a of exotic foods.
  3. I've brought you some bread to your meal.
  4. She grew up in a poor family and isn't at all.
  5. Desserts coffee or espresso.