We have the Products and the Knowledge!
Meet NLC’s Product Knowledge Team. Headed by Senior Product Knowledge Consultant, Andrew Facey, the team is comprised of highly trained staff members who are here to assist in your shopping experience and provide you with in-depth information on products and the world of beverage alcohol.
From tips on what to serve or how to store that bottle of wine, they're also available to help you:
- Arrange a comprehensive wine tasting at our store operated Taste Stations
- Find the right product for the occasion
- Learn more about the products we sell
Meet the Team!
Andrew Facey is NLC’s Sommelier and Senior Product Knowledge Consultant. He joined the team in 2008 with the dual role of being the lead educator for all NLC employees as well as the liaison between the Corporation and the restaurant community.
Within this role, Andrew regularly meets with staff and management teams of all 24 Corporate Liquor Stores and conducts product education seminars that teach liquor store staff about the variety of products sold at NLC Liquor Stores. In addition to educating NLC staff, Andrew also teaches the International Sommelier Guild’s (ISG) eight week Wine Fundamentals Certificate Level 1 and Level 2.
Andrew is a graduate of the International Sommelier Guild‘s (ISG) Sommelier Diploma Program, an intensive course that teaches students how to evaluate, critique, decant, serve and store wine.
Photo (left to right): Andrew Facey, Allison Horlick, Des Hallett, Chris Dowden, and John Ryan.
Des Hallett is the Product Knowledge Consultant at our Howley Estates Store in St. John’s. He has completed the Liquor Board of Ontario (LCBO) product knowledge training, as well as two levels of the ISG Program. After five years with the NLC, Des is extremely passionate and knowledge about the products we sell and he is sure to make a great recommendation for you!
Allison Horlick has worked with NLC for nearly 12 years, and currently serves as the Product Knowledge Consultant at the Old Placentia Road Liquor Store in Mount Pearl. She has completed the LCBO product knowledge training, and holds Level One and Two of the ISG Program. Allison is ready and waiting to answer all your product questions. Try and stump her!
Chris Dowden joined NLC in 2004. Having completed all of the LCBO product knowledge training, and Level One and Two of the ISG Program, Chris has an extensive knowledge base but will admit that scotch is his passion. If you have a question about scotch, Chris is your guy! You can find him at our Stavanger Drive location.
John Ryan has worked with NLC for five years and currently works at our Merrymeeting Road location. John has also completed the LCBO product knowledge training, and Level One and Two of the ISG Program. Customer Service is what drives John and his number one goal is to ensure the customer always comes first and they leave happy and satisfied with their purchase.
- Over 250 Liquor Sales Clerks throughout our 24 Corporate Stores have completed the LCBO Product Knowledge Training
- 19 staff have completed Level Two of the ISG Program
- 74 staff have completed Level One of the ISG Program
How To: Taste like a Cicerone
[Taken from NLC's Occasions Magazine | Spring 2013 | Issue 24]
Steve Riley is a Certified Cicerone, the beer equivalent of a sommelier, and President of BetterBeer.com. He is one of only a handful of Certified Cicerones in Canada, and is a recognized beer judge.
Things are changing for the better in the beer world, with imaginative twists as well as traditional styles available to Atlantic Canadian beer-lovers in more variety than ever.
You have probably noticed an infusion of new beer in NLC Liquor Stores, and whether you always drink the same brand or try new styles at every opportunity, you can expand your horizons by learning what experts know about drinking beer at its best. Here are a few tips on beer-tasting and getting the most out of your next beer-drinking experience.
Pour your beer into a clean, clear glass, being sure to retain an inch-high collar of foam. The foam (or head) helps retain the delicate aromas of the beer. Next, assess: is the beer clear or cloudy? If it’s an unfiltered style, such as Wit (Belgian Wheat Ale), it will be cloudy. Typically, cloudy or unfiltered beer will be more complex and flavourful.
Take a short sniff, followed by a longer one. A little trick that beer experts use to accentuate the aroma is to cover the glass with your hand and swirl the glass for 3-4 seconds. Take your hand away and immediately take a deep, long sniff with your nose buried in the glass. Do you notice how intense the aroma becomes? You can pick up many subtleties this way.
Take a one-ounce sip, swirl it in your mouth and then swallow while exhaling through your nose (as taste is 99% aroma). What do you taste? Cereal, floral, citrus, sweet, grainy, spicy, bitter? When tasting the beer, be sure to also think about the mouthfeel (texture) and any other specific characteristics you detect. Is it watery, thin or thick? Is it hot (a warming sensation felt at the back of throat), or perhaps acidic?
Lastly, remember that beer is social. The setting and the people you enjoy the beer with are as important as the taste of the beer. Get a group together and collectively expand your understanding. Enjoy a beer you haven’t tried before; the selection is greater than it ever has been before.
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