Sommelier Steven Olson of aka Wine Geek - Biography

New York, NY

September 2011

Wine and spirits consultant for Bon Appetit Magazine and founder of aka wine geek, Steven Olson is dedicated to the education and consultation of drinks degustation. Olson teaches, lectures, and writes all over the world about wine, beer, spirits, sake, and virtually any other beverage under the sun, discussing their integral cause-and-effect relationship with food as he preaches the gospel of his mission: making tasting fun by removing typical intimidation factor and pretense.

Olson’s accomplishments (and 30-plus years in the industry) crystallize with aka wine geek, but Olson also has starred in his own TV series, consulted for bars all over the world, and provided the voice for Virtual Bartender kiosks in retail stores nationwide. Among his many bar and restaurant consultancy clients are Relais & Château, Mayflower Inn, Gramercy Tavern, the Borgata Hotel and Casino, and Aqua in Cancun, Mexico. Aka wine geek, which Olson began in 1992, joins the beverage pro’s expertise with the skills and savvy of a network of professionals from across the country. Together they serve in an educational and advisory capacity for all strata of the industry, striving to empower members of the beverage trade and consumers alike to trust—and understand—their distinctive palates.

In March 2006, Olson; Dale DeGroff; Doug Frost, MS, MW; Paul Pacult; and Dr. David Wondrich started Beverage Alcohol Resource (BAR) in New York City. (Andy Seymour was added as a partner in 2008). An independent organization, whose mission is to educate, guide, and propagate the healthy, enlightened, and responsible use of alcohol products, BAR is in a unique position to educate on the front lines, whether its students are service industry professionals, members of the media, or curious consumers. BAR was chosen as CHEERS Magazine “Beverage Innovator of the Year” in 2007, a well-deserved lifetime achievement award for Olson.