Sophie Jump runs her energetic wine PR company, Jump Start Wine Solutions, in the UK organising events and wine trips, as well as helping international wine producers break into the UK wine scene. When she isn’t working in wine, you might find her chasing rugby around the globe. Amanda Barnes interviews Sophie about her pathway into wine and what she’s working on now.
How did you develop an interest in wine?
When I was a kid I used to spend holidays with my father in the South of France. He fancied himself as a bit of a connoisseur buying most of his wine in 20-litre ‘cubis’ petrol station style! Occasions were celebrated with the cheapest of bottled wines – Listel Gris de Gris being the preferred treat. It mattered not, I was under the spell. Mainly, I suspect now, due to the fact that I was allowed to imbibe freely from the age of 13!
Your career took you from working as a diplomat to working in the wine industry, how important is diplomacy in the wine world?
Most people laugh when they hear that I used to be a Diplomat! If I ever did hone any diplomatic skills they are most called upon when trying to explain to a producer that they haven’t got a hope in hell of breaking into the UK market. See? I told you people laugh!
Among your many wine clients today, you work with several wineries in Argentina. What is it that you think makes Argentine wine exciting today?
I have been working with Argentine wineries helping them develop their sales and brands in the UK market for 15 years now. To me, everything about Argentina is exciting. There is a special feeling I get when I am in the country and the wines embody this. They are ‘noisy’ wines! It’s hard to keep up with the chatter, there’s so much going on.
What does 2019 hold for Sophie Jump?
Well after the shock of dry January everything gets better from here! I’m organising conferences for direct marketing specialists in Dubrovnik and South Africa for the International Wine Clubs Association. As always, there are plenty of activities around Argentina kicking off with a tasting of organic, biodynamic and natural wines from Chakana which its owner will be hosting for CWW members on 14th March. I’ll also be in Japan in November for the rugby world cup!
Find out more about Jump Start Wine Solutions online.
Photo by Colin Hampden-White