Wine and Hip-Hop Connoisseur Jermaine Stone

Jermaine Stone
Photo credit: Jermaine Stone

Jermaine Stone, aka The Real Wolf of Wine, didn’t know that the goal of getting a simple office job that was part of a bigger plan to go into business would lead to traveling the world for wine.

The original goal for Jermaine while in college was to get a job. It didn’t matter where; it was just a job that would give him the flexibility he needed for his classes. “ I just wanted to help pay the bills for college. It was any job that I could have a set schedule,” he shares during the episode. “I started going to school because I knew that was the only way that I could get a business loan so that I could open a catering hall.”

Who’s The Real Wolf of Wine?

That job would be as a shipping clerk at the wine auction house Zachy’s in New York.  For the Bronx-born college student, it was an accomplishment of a goal and, unknowingly, the beginning of a career that now takes him around the world speaking, consulting and helping others enjoy wine the way he does.

“I guess the best way to summarize me these days is a sommelier. I say that with air quotes because you know, I’ll be completely honest. I don’t consider myself a sommelier just because of, um, you know, a lot of times, often somms have specific training and, you know, they’ll go and become certified. I got into the wine industry through the operations side of the business and everything that I learned, I learned on the job.”

Getting away from the technicality of what to call him, he is known to the wine community as the Real Wolf of Wine for his knowledge, sharpness, and cultural inclusiveness, which makes him an influential wine professional.

But before wine, there was hip-hop, which inspires how Jermaine visualizes wine, harmonizes tasting notes and connects with others who share a liking for both.
“The thing about hip-hop is just the creativity. You know, uh, the, the artistry in the words, like what you can do with one, when you can say a word and have it, uh, mean two different things, or even three different things,” says the Jamaican wine connoisseur.

“Sometimes you think about, um, uh, the complexity in wine that exists and why wine is complex, the different layers of flavors that you wouldn’t expect that go together and develop over time as you’re tasting them, rhymes really transform themselves and have the capability to transform themselves in the same way.”

He recently wrapped up the first season of his new hit series, “Street Somm,” on Tastemade TV and continues to stay busy as the CEO of Cru Luv Wine, where he consults with some of the biggest wine brands, regions and industry leaders.

With 15 years in the business, it almost seems he is just beginning.  Listen to the episode to learn more about his wine journey and what future collaboration you may see in 2024.

Are you looking to explore something new in a bottle or wine region? Get a few recommendations for Jermaine, who shares a few that may catch your eye.

Go beyond this conversation by heading over to his website, and be sure to follow him on Facebook, Instagram and Twitter for feature events and more.

Full episodes are also available where you listen to your podcasts such as Hayti, Apple, Spotify, Google and more.

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