Black Star Farms is an exciting place to visit and work. Meet the staff behind the bar, in the kitchen, at the Inn, in the winery, etc. in this new Employee Features section of our blog. The first installment is all about Andy…he’s spirited, funny, intelligent and a great person to be around!
Andy Jacobson, Tasting Room Manager at our Old Mission Tasting Room
Where are you from?
Traverse City, MI. Born & raised.
What drew you to working at Black Star Farms and how long have you been there?
I had previous retail experience and saw a classified ad for tasting room staff at the Suttons Bay tasting room. I thought it would be a good experience and a fun job so I applied. After a great season working there I was asked to come back as the company was growing and opening a tasting room on Old Mission Peninsula. It has been seven years since Black Star Farms opened the Old Mission winery and tasting room and I am honored to have been a part of it since the beginning.
What’s your favorite Black Star Farms wine?
It’s hard to choose one…. For our reds I like the Arcturos Cabernet Franc, hands down! In the whites there are so many great choices! Right now I’m favoring the Arcturos Dry Riesling with the Arcturos Gewurtztraminer a close second.
What’s your favorite part of your job?
I think it’s cliche to say “meeting all kinds of friendly, different, people.” I really feel like the best part is that every day is different and presents it’s own challenges. One day it may be helping someone new to our industry learn that they actually can like and enjoy wine. The next it might be managing a busy tasting room and making sure everyone has the laid back and positive experience we strive to create.
When you are not working at Black Star Farms what are your favorite things/hobbies in Northern Michigan?
I like to run (though I have been a bit of a slacker lately) and read. I also like to explore our Northern Michigan area with my wife and daughter. I feel it is important for her to grow up active, but also to appreciate the wonderful sights, sounds, tastes and events encompassed in our unique area.
Which Black Star Farms wine is most representative of the Old Mission Peninsula?
I would have to say Riesling, without a doubt! There is so much variation in styles (dry, semi-dry, sweet, etc.) and in a way it is a metaphor for what the Old Mission Peninsula has to offer. There is something out here for everyone to enjoy. Hopefully we can help them find it!
Do you have any favorite “on the job” moments? (ie, engagements, celebrations, start of new season, etc.)
More than anything else I like it when people who haven’t been wine tasting visit. Sometimes they may feel out of place, shy or intimidated. I enjoy these guests because it is my goal to make them feel comfortable in our tasting room while sampling and learning about Black Star Farms wines. Ultimately it’s the experience and the idea that wine is something that anyone and everyone can enjoy.