Sam Kim, Publisher & Author, Wine Orbit Magazine, Auckland

Born, Bred, Schooled

Seoul, Korea, where the student to teacher ratio is 70:1 (that's at private schools, can be up to 90:1 in public schools. At least it used to be when I went to school).

First wine industry job - year

Wine Waiter at Glenview Motor Hotel in Hamilton (1984), selling mainly carafes of wine filled from bag-in-box. Nobilo's Muller Thurgau was premium, Black Tower was super premium.

First real (full time) job (outside of school/uni holidays)

Bar supervisor at the "Champs" bar, Hyatt Auckland, and part-time at the "Top of the Town" restaurant (same hotel), 1986 I think.

Career Highlight

Starting my own business, Wine Orbit magazine.

Cat? Dog?

Like dog but currently have two cats.

Desert island wine and food.

Vintage Champagne and fresh bluff oysters


My father. He was most diligent and hardworking - I have a long way to go.

Dinner table companions, dead or alive

My brother - gone too soon, love to have him back.

Greatest achievement

That's got to be having kids.

New Zealand wine industry needs...

More profitability, AND less opportunists. There are so many great people, the future looks very bright though.

If you weren't working in the wine industry, what would you be doing?

Professional triathlete (Ironman distance) - you get to travel and their careers span a long time as you peak in your 30s, and can be competitive into early 40s.

One thing about you people might be surprised to learn?

I was married before (no, that's not the surprise). My son from my first marriage just had a son. That makes me a grandpa!

If you had the day off tomorrow what would you like to do.

Go for a 3-hr run, shower, nap, cook all afternoon, and have a long dinner with people I love.


T:     @wineorbit




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