Change is the spice of life. I am spicing up my life for the third time. Some people spend their whole life doing one job without having a passion. I always manage to have two passions at a time. I started as a cabinet maker and wine geek. Then, wine/product consultant for the LCBO and moonlighting as a sausage and salumi maker. Now, I will be an artisan sausage maker and freelance wine expert. Underlying passion was and is present throughout all these changes! Life is good!
The last 13 years with the LCBO have been a good experience. Tasting an enormous amount of wines a year is definitely a dream come true for a wine lover. Teaching, presenting, evaluating, judging, consulting, and continuously learning were the highlights. The customers at the Summerhill store made my job a perfect example of the saying, “do what you like and never work a day in your life”. Some of them are now close friends! I will miss the action but will keep in touch with them.
During this time I went through some health and personal problems. With the help of my family, friends, colleagues, and the LCBO, I survived. During this time I started to take seriously my passion for cooking, making salumi and sausages, and supporting the local food industry.
At one point I had to slow down as I could not keep up with the sausage orders and calls. So I slowed down and just kept the sausage making barely alive for a ”later time”. Thanks to the best thing that happened to my life in the last couple years (my wife Karen who shares all the same values in life), it is now that “later time”.
As of March 31 I am no longer a Product Consultant for the LCBO. Now I am a proud artisan sausage maker and freelance “wine expert” with dual locations — Prince Edward County and Toronto!
My ONTALIA philosophy is now a business. “Italian Roots in Local Soil” will be my inspiration.
Please check often the new and improved website that my amica Kato Wake designed for me for news about upcoming tastings, classes, events, etc. And, if you don’t mind me being so bold…get the best Ontario sausages from one of the retailers listed or call me. I will deliver!