April Newsletter 2023

The clocks have finally sprung forward and we are definitely starting to get those Summer vibes as the longer evenings kick in. We’ve also seen some big internal changes over the past month with our new Individual and Corporate Membership launch. It’s never too late to register, so if it’s still on your to-do list, be sure to pop over to our website to join our network of enthusiastic and talented women in the wine, spirits, brewing and hospitality industry and start taking advantage of the fantastic member benefits.

If you haven’t visited our website in a while, we encourage you to head over there after you’ve read the newsletter. We’ve updated the look and feel of the site and added heaps of helpful links to online educational tools such as Champagne MOOCTypsyUniversity Courses in Brewing and Distilling and more.

Some of you may remember that when Wine Spirit Women was initially set up it was on a paid membership basis. Since then, we’ve faced a global pandemic where the entire world was put on pause, and during this time we didn’t feel it was right to charge a membership fee. Now after a year of free membership, we realise that things need to change slightly. We want to be able to run more events and provide more supports for our members, and to do that we need to invest in WSW.

That means going forward we will have a membership fee which goes towards running the group – the website, events and so on.

We would like to take this opportunity to thank everyone who has signed up so far. Your support is greatly appreciated and we look forward to seeing you in the near future.

Benefits of Membership


  • Connect with industry professionals and like-minded women. Opportunities for mentorship and collaboration.
  • Access to the WSW WhatsApp and Facebook Member-Only Group (if you haven’t gotten access to these yet, please contact us at winespiritwomen@gmail.com and we’ll rectify this).

Exclusive Discounts and Offers

  • Access to WSW Members-only Events, Workshops and Tastings
  • First access and member discounts on tickets to WSW Open Events
  • A WINE IDEA Wine Shop Discount – 10% off first order.
  • Vinspire Academy – 10% off WSET Level 1 & 20% off WSET Level 2 (valid until March 2024).
  • A Class of Wine – 10% off Lynda’s Back to Basics Wine Appreciation Self-Study Course (RRP €49). Get lifetime access to over 15 bite-size videos, ebooks and more.


  • Free access to online learning platform Capstone California level 1 & 2 (worth over €500).

*NEW* We are delighted to announce our first scholarship of 2023! Vinspire Academy, founded by Philip Dunne, has very kindly sponsored a scholarship for one of our members.

Philip is currently the Group Sommelier for the Doyle Collection (Ireland, UK & USA), and has built a stellar reputation in the industry, having been named Ireland’s Best Sommelier 2018 & ’19 (Sunday Business Post).

One WSET Level 1 in Wine or Spirits course to be taken in 2023 will be offered to a Wine Spirit Women member.

To apply for the Vinspire Academy Scholarship please send 500 words explaining how you feel it would benefit you and your future career plans to winespiritwomen@gmail.com. The deadline for applications is 11.59pm on Friday, 28th of April 2023. Applications are open to members only.

Champagne Masterclass | Monday, 22nd May

Save the date! We’re currently planning a Champagne Masterclass to be held in D’Olier Street Restaurant on 22nd May. More details to follow. If you’re working in the wine trade and want us to feature one of your portfolio’s Champagnes please get in touch.

wine spirit women

On 27th March, we were invited to pay a visit to Whiplash Brewery thanks to Wine Spirit Women member and Whiplash marketing coordinator, Leah Kilcullen. We were treated to an in-depth tour of their production line and beer cellar with Lead Brewer, Lewis, expertly answering all our questions about how their processes work and where they get their inspiration for recipes. We also tasted several samples of their brews to help us understand the relationship between the different grains, hops and yeast components. Thanks again to Leah, Lewis and Irél (cellar brewer) for the warm welcome.

On 30th March, Brían Ó Donnchadha, President of Irish Whiskey Society, invited us to join them for an evening Celebrating Women in Irish Whiskey. Working our way through 6 different Irish Whiskeys from around the country, we were shown how women are playing an important role in the burgeoning Irish Whiskey Industry. Well that’s music to our ears! And with the diversity and quality of the samples on offer, we tip our hats to these industrious ladies and for bring their passion and experience to our glasses. For anyone interested in joining the Irish Whiskey Society, they are accepting new members and host tastings monthly.

The past few weeks have been exceptionally fantastic for women in the food and drinks industry, with many of our members and colleagues taking home awards and achievements. Based in Celbridge, Co. Kildare, Nest took home the winning prize at the Irish Restaurant Awards, being named Best Wine Experience in Leinster. Also in Co. Kildare, Beara Bitters, won Bitters Producer of the Year at the 2023 Berlin Intl Spirits Competition. And congratulations are in order for Co. Cork based, Kinsale Mead, for being awarded the Food Academy Award in the Food & Beverage category at the Guaranteed Irish Business Awards 2023.

The Michelin guide of Ireland and Britain was released with Dede in Baltimore being promoted to a two Michelin star, Terre in Castlemartyr gaining one star and a selection of other eateries making the guide. In Dublin D’Olier Street was a new addition to the guide, following hot on the heels of their inclusion in the Sunday Times 100 Best Restaurants in Ireland. Declan Maxwell, manager at Spitalfields, who hold a Michelin Bib, took home the Welcome & Service Award, further cementing that Irish hospitality is still world class. Finally, Belfast’s Michael Deane won this years “Chef Mentor Award”.

Great Wine Capitals wrote a very interesting article on women working in the Rioja wine trade. Read about four inspiring wine professionals who are making world class wines and placing sustainability at the heart of their business. We recommend pouring a glass of your favourite Rioja while you peruse this. Similarly Wine Spectator showcased the women who are leading the charge at some of the worlds most iconic estates.

Irish Distillers announced a three-year collaboration which will support malting barley farmers in adopting regenerative agricultural practices on their farms as Heineken Ireland join forces on regenerative barley project.

For our April Q&A we sat down with Boss Lady extraordinare Viki Baird from Stillgarden Distillery in Inchicore, Dublin 8.

Visitors to the Stillgarden can partake in the gin school and distilling academy, swing by for a comedy show or indulge in a gin afternoon tea.

Based in the buzzing neighbourhood of Dublin 8 Stillgarden Distillery are passionate spirit lovers who are facing forward not backwards, who make modern Irish spirits for the modern spirit drinker. 

Enjoying spirits should be more modern, more fun and more vibrant with more flavours and more positive impacts on the planet & people. Stillgarden Distillery call this pro-social disruption (or modern craft)

They make modern Irish spirits using as many fresh, local & sustainably grown botanicals as they can and capture those amazing flavours through some very cool science. 

Exciting job opportunity coming up as Front of House lead on the Ohana Floors in the new Salesforce Tower. So much scope for creativity and fun with an emphasis on delivering top class hospitality. Service and wine knowledge essential. Reach out to emma.oconnell@salesforce.com for more information.

An Experienced Brewer is required at Wicklow Wolf. The successful applicant will join a small, dedicated team and receive a monthly beer allowance (hello dream job), among other benefits.

The Morning Bakery is hiring for a Weekend Barista and Weekend Baker. Email CV’s to info@themorning.ie

Dublin’s NOTE are hiring for a number of positions; Sommelier (full time), Bartender (full time), Waiter (part time & full time). Email CV and Cover Letter to hello@notedublin.com

In Cork, Sonflour are hiring for a part time wait staff member (Tuesday to Saturday). Email CV’s to sonflour.cork@gmail.com.

Electric Cork is currently hiring for a busy and ambitious restaurant Full-time & part-time waiting staff positions available. Email CV’s to aaron@electriccork.com

Dublin’s Volpe Nera seek an Assistant Manager the right candidate will have 2 years experience in a similar role and a passion for customer service, food and wine. For more information email info@volpenera.ie

Also in Dublin, Michael’s is looking to fill various roles including Front of House Staff and Mixologists. Contact team@michaels.ie to register your interest.

Two Michelin star, Dede at the Customs House in West Cork is actively recruiting Front of House staff including Assistant Sommelier/Manager and Sommelier. Contact info@customshousebaltimore.com for more information.

In Galway, Michelin star restaurant Aniar are hiring a Sommelier. Applicants should send their CV’s to food@aniarrestaurant.ie

O’Briens Wine are recruiting for a number of roles; Part-time Sales Assistant (Citywest), Part-time Sales Assistant (Nutgrove), Flexi-time Sales Assistant (Limerick) and Full-time Sales Assistant (Templeogue). For more information visit www.obrienswine.ie

The Blue Haven Collection are recruiting across a number of locations and roles, including a Mixologist and Bar Staff in Kinsale, Co.Cork, and Food and Beverage Staff in Schull, Co.Cork.

Rye River Brewing are undergoing an expansion from 25hL to 100hL brew house and looking for an experienced brewer and an Assistant Brewer. Email CV and cover letter to jobs@ryeriverbrewingco.com

Kinsale Mead are recruiting for a Brand Development Specialist. This role is based in and around Kinsale, Co Cork with some travel around the country.

Diageo seek an Account Executive Luxury Spirits (South Hub – Kildare to Cork). The position is field based, with an expectation that the successful candidate would spend a min of 70% of their time in South Hub.

Mark Anthony Brands are hiring an Assistant Distiller to join the team at Glendalough (12 month contract).

The CLIFF group are hiring for a variety of roles including, Bartender at the five-star Cliff House Hotel and a Bar Supervisor at Cliff at Lyons.

In Clare Gregans Castle seek a Bar Manager and Restaurant Server. Live-in accomodation available. Contact Ken Bergin (kenbergin@gregans.ie)

or call 086 8098017 or 065 7077005, or Simon Haden (simonhaden@gregans.ie).

In the UK Berkmann Wine Cellars are recruiting a Sales Operations Executive.

The Buyer has identified a selection of industry jobs, including Drinks Account Manager at Phipps PR, Head of Content for IWSC & Club Oenologique, Viticulture Lecturer at Plumpton College and more.

Are you recruiting? Send us an email and we will feature any vacancies in our newsletter.

Following on from their successful virtual wine tours of Italy from inside their appropriately dubbed caravan, Caravino, Fionnuala Harkin and Maeve Bancroft are finally realising their dream of bringing a small group of wine enthusiasts to explore the Tuscan countryside and wine scene. This dream wine trip is available to both couples and single travellers, and includes accommodation in a luxurious villa, complete with outdoor pool (see pictures below) nestled amongst the vineyards, meals with some wine-themed dinners, writing and cookery classes and, of course, wine tours. Happening June 10th to 17th, 2023, for more information about this fabulous tour, click here or email thecaravino@gmail.com.

The Wine Buff Rathmines will host a ‘Wine Appreciation’ evening on 13th April. Tickets are €20 per person. On 20th April they will host a ‘Cheese & Wine Evening’, €35 per person. And on 27th April they will host a ‘Rioja Discovery Evening’. Click here to check ticket prices and availability.

On 17th April, GrapecircusNomad and SIYPS are hosting a trade and press only event showcasing their incredible array of wines. This year they will also feature a selection of unique spirits and liquors. For more information, click here.

JN Wines will be hosting Portfolio Tastings for Trade and Consumers on 18th April in Dublin and 19th April in Belfast. To register or purchase tickedts, please visit their website.

Nude Wine has launched its Summer Tasting events covering such themes as Australia Day and Wines of the Camino. Be sure to snap up your tickets here.

Save the Date: Wine Spirit Women will a Champagne Masterclass 22nd May D’Olier Street Restaurant. Tickets to follow.

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