Richard - life before Grog
Set up Grog in May '99 after having worked for Oddbins (remember them? Sadly bust) for 10 years, latterly in Edinburgh as a branch manager and staff "Product" Trainer. R has the wset Diploma and has done the first year Master of Wine. He is also a wset Approved Tutor. A far-too-keen drinker & taster, as friends (& wife) will testify, with a fondness for anything decent made from grapes...R has what is termed in the trade a "commercial" palate ie. he likes what most people like. Motto: "Let's not take life too seriously", & has the record for the heaviest bottle bank in his street.
Janice - life before Grog
Behind every great man there’s a great woman. If it wasn’t for Janice the rest of us would have no wine to sell, no money, no fuel to put in the vans, no vans to put fuel in and so on and so forth. Allegedly sat down for a sandwich once. Has worked for Grog since September 1999.
"Red" - life before Grog
Red (also know as Ian) was Oddbins' "Van man" in Edinburgh for 10 years (where Richard originally gave him the job) until sliding across to join Grog in 2004. Red only has his level 2 wine exam but his road knowledge is Encyclopedic. In his limited spare time he likes to pretend he’s Elvis. His blood is made from 90% Chardonnay. Red & Janice recently discovered they stood in the same Edinburgh queue for a Status Quo concert 40 years ago. Aspires to enter "Pop Master" on Radio 2 (specialist subject Elvis?). He travelled to Graceland in 2014 for research purposes (twice). He saw Woody Allen (still alive, just) in New York in 2017 & was so excited. He goes to New York twice a year to pay hommage to where John Lennon was shot and visit strawberry fields garden in central perk.
John B - life before Grog
Can you believe it? John worked for me in Oddbins about 26 years ago, then he ran the Grog Bar in Rose Street for 7 years, then Wildfire restaurant for a couple of years & then decided to rejoin the fold! He still looks SO baby faced (Alcohol is a preservative after all). John has his level 3 WSET from back when there were only 4 countries in the world making wine. John apparently runs the Grog Bottle Shop ably aided by Angus & Fraser.
Van Gary - life before Grog
Sleek, silent and stealthy like a Ninja. Highly organised and efficient. Was at School with Red but we don't hold that against him. If you look at him for too long you turn into a goat. Has a morbid, muttering, mumbling dislike of staircases (like most delivery folk). Since 2004 in Grog? Crumbs, how time flies.
Van Chris - life before Grog
Big bloke, beard (mostly). 6 foot 4 inches & 18 stone & can carry 4 cases of wine at once. When I say 18 stone, I mean often 20 stone. Played rugby for the Indian national team along with his brothers although all 3 hail from Jersey. Don’t dare call him ugly. Chris has a degree in Geophysics from Edinburgh uni & is a qualified snowboard instructor. Probably the most overqualified van driver on the planet. Almost as hairy in the flesh as his picture would suggest. Disappears (if allowed) for all of January snow surfing every year; even in 2019 with babies in tow! Can't remember when he started it was so long ago. 2005?
"John P" - life before Grog
General Sales Bod & DIY expert. John is half "sales", half "warehouse", but all man. John is a thinking man's man. So much thinking that he now has his WSET Diploma level 4. Also spends time thinking about doing DIY on his yacht in Monaco or Skiing in Val D'Isere, Avoriaz, Les Gets or the Dolomites. Ingrained in Grog since 2003.
Clare - life before Grog
Clare has her level 3 (with distinction - no less) & is studying the level 4 diploma in wine. She cycles to work & often doesn't fall off (no wine involved). She has enormous experience working in various restaurants around Edinburgh & can pronounce "Gewurztraminer or Hárslevelű " effortlessly (go on, go on, test her!). Clare is a brand new Grogger - as she only started in 2016.
Simon - life before Grog
An oddly chirpy Teesider who was formerly known as an artist after 4 years at the Edinburgh college of Art. Simon loves a drop of wine most minutes of the day and tends to know slightly more about what he’s drinking than the people who made it. He will pontificate at length on many things including wine, art, bicycles, mountains (athletic rather than aesthetic), Middlesbrough, Ridley Scott (who was also from Middlesbrough). 2003 vintage Grogger. Motto "Pass me the red".
Heather - life before Grog
A tactical drinker (she plans her drinking and eating out loud) with a taste for all the finer things in life but not the bank account to match. Rumoured to be an excellent cook... (hint hint). A 2006 vintage grogger. Heather is an industrious part-timer these days and appears to enjoy the adult interaction, obviously we aren't talking about Simon then. Level 3 WSET holder
Angus - life before Grog
Angus started with us last year in 2020. He has a degree in something or other "Agricultural" and spent some time at Plumpton College (the wine one next to Brighton) to round off his drinking experience. Angus' dad was at school with Richard (yes, that long ago). He also has the dubious honour of still being young enough to play rugby and even more foolishly actually does so. Got his level 3 WSET (merit) in 2021, congrats!
Fraser - life before Grog
Fraser also started with us in 2020. Fraser graduated with honours (unlike his father) from Edinburgh Uni and is super bright (also unlike his father). He has his WSET level 3 wine qualification. He is also Richard's son, but please don't hold that against him. Fraser Grogson?