Welcome to our newest series, The Somm Set. Each month we’ll be sitting down with a guest sommelier and uncovering their guilty pleasures, cellar staples, and everything in between! Follow as they hand-select their favorites from our warehouse, giving you the inside scoop on cellar must-haves!

This month on The Somm Set, we’re excited to feature Tonya Pitts, Sommelier. Join us as we explore everything from her love of Champagne and her passion for the wine industry.

Read Our Interview With Tonya Pitts
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This week from Tonya Pitts:

My journey with wine has been a bold and passionate story of growth and adventure. It is funny my initial regional exposures to wine are still my favorites. France was my first inspiration with vintage Champagne that led me to explore Italy's rich diversity and then take a deeper look at California. The Southern Hemisphere then enchanted me, and Australia became a usual suspect on my radar. I was a sightseer gazing in wonder at my newfound delights of textures and smells, dreaming of the day I would turn 21 and be legal to imbibe in this cultural blend of art and science. I could swirl, smell, and imagine these faraway places, which created a sincere desire to see the world.

From my perspective, wine is synonymous with culture and the best things in life: the arts, music, history, science, and truly connecting with friends and family. You can revisit those moments in a glass or in a bottle. Those long-ago moments come back vividly and in technicolor. For me, it is like a movie playing in your head once more. Some of these selections may well be sunshine in a bottle for you or the most joyous and hedonistic time in your life. These are the experiences that are created with Tonya's Secret Stash.

Our first stop is Champagne, and my first memory is working in a restaurant with Perrier Jouet Belle Epoque by the glass. It was the era of decadence and making a splash with large bottles. I will never forget seeing this massive bottle harnessed in a metal swing, which is called a wine cradle, and the Champagne flowing out of the bottle. I still get overly excited when Champagne is being poured. There is this rush of exuberance. It is apropos that I am having a conversation with Philippe Andre of Champagne Charles Heidsieck. These are my other experiences I would like to share with you.

Check out all the wines mentioned below!

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