grapes_gusto_about_gilat_piNo passion? No point!

Ciao, and welcome. My name is Gilat Ben-Dor, and Grapes and Gusto™ is my blog. Through the lens of a wine glass (and other creative perspectives), I aim to share my knowledge, experiences, and passion for great wine, food, travel and culture. (More about the blog’s purpose can be found in my Welcome Post).

(Please note: Links to my GilatBen-Dor.com website are temporarily being updated.) I am a professional speaker, writer, wine educator/sommelier and personal development specialist focusing on passion (or “gusto!”) as the vehicle for success.  I am also the founder and director of Renaissance Wine Academy™ , offering wine seminars and team-building activities.

I try to “walk my talk” about passionate living. Following some illustrious living in Italy and Japan, I returned to the U.S. and found myself in the corporate rat race. After obtaining an MBA, I navigated through a series of corporate positions that paradoxically prepared me for, yet kept me from, following my true passion – having my own business, in a field I LOVE, and involving lots of speaking, writing, traveling, creating….and, of course, wining and dining!

In 2007, I took a major leap – cold turkey! – and resigned from Corporate America, made other life changes, and decided to follow my dream. Within less than two years in my new business, I was fortunate enough to receive wine distinctions that took me to Paris and Australia. Most recently, I returned from a trip to Israel, where I researched ancient wine regions and new, boutique wineries – a trip which I will also chronicle on the blog.

If you’re curious, you can see a listing of my wine credentials and awards here, and my speaking website here.

My mission is to help others unlock, identify, and find ways to monetize their passions. Please feel free to contact me if I can help, and I invite you to join in on the conversation by commenting on any posts of interest.

One final note, since many of you have asked:  I am an avid photographer and artist, and I do my best to use my own photos and graphics whenever possible on GrapesAndGusto.com.

Thank you for stopping by – I hope you will stay with me on this journey of Grapes and Gusto: Wine, Food and Adventures in Passion.

To life!