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Wine tasting

Want to know the difference between a Sauternes and a Sauvignon or ask our knowledgeable wine team about a specific vintage. Put your comment in the box below and we’ll reply as soon as we can.

Introducing some of our wine team:

Jon Christensen

Jon Christensen

Jon got bitten by the wine bug during a family holiday to Châteauneuf-du-Pape in 1991 and then immersed himself deeper in the world of wine by picking grapes in Burgundy soon after. Despite detours to French philology and IT, he kept going back to wine as a freelancer; consulting, snooping for auctionable items and setting up portfolios for shops and later a wine bar in London. He took the Wine and Spirit Education Trust (WSET) diploma course in Haaga-Perho, Finland in 2006 and has since given up the rest for wine alone and is a fully-fledged judge at the International Wine and Spirits Challenge.

He joined MMI 2008 and is now wine and spirits specialist.

Jon enjoys off-roading, snooping for new and interesting wines, travelling and likes Clarkson.

Tony Dodds

Tony Dodds

Tony happened upon a German wine festival at the age of 11 and never looked back!

He grew up in the Lake District, went to catering college, then worked as a sommelier in restaurants in Scotland, Jersey and Bermuda.

Returning to the UK, Tony did the WSET Diploma and worked for various wine merchants before coming to Dubai in 2006.  He now heads up the MMI group wine team.

He likes golf, cooking, camping, The Smiths & The Clash, United and tasting new wines.

Read an account of Tony’s recent visit to vineyards and winemakers in New Zealand and Australian here:

A Saintly end to it all – February 19th

Looks like rain…February 19th

Yarra and a little bit of France – February 17th

Come fly with me – February 14th

Martinborough to Hawkes Bay – February 12th

One pinot to rule them all – February 10th

It’s a family affair – February 9th

Marlborough Man meets goats – February 7th

Heading down under…. February 6th

Paul Hopkins

Paul Hopkins

Paul has been lucky to have spent most of his life working in the many different facets of the wine industry.  He passed his WSET diploma way back in 2001 followed by an advance tasting assessment qualification in 2003. He rarely tastes the same wine twice!

Jorrit Gerritsma

Jorrit Gerritsma

Jorrit was born in Holland but has traveled the world.  After Hotel Management and working in Aruba, Switzerland, Thailand, Oman and Abu Dhabi he has now settled in Dubai.

He particularly likes Riesling from the Mosel and rosé from the South of France and when not working likes to spend time in the kitchen or on a golf course.

Do you have a question for our team? Here’s where to ask – in the comments section below.  We will reply as soon as we can.

Posted in ask an expert


  • tonyd
    Thursday 9th December 2010 4:43 pm

    I’d like to be first to post something , so here it is.

  • somesunplease
    Sunday 12th December 2010 12:27 pm

    Hi there – I am currently doing my WSET diploma in Dubai and loving it. I’m really keen to go to Europe in the new year and spend a week in a classic wine region. Can you recommend somewhere to go and when? Its most likely to be a trip on my own so am happy to join an organised tour.

    Cheers – Kirsten

    • admin
      Monday 13th December 2010 8:31 am

      Thanks for your comment Kirsten – really glad you are enjoying the WSET diploma. The wine team will reply shortly about organised tours.

    • admin
      Tuesday 14th December 2010 2:30 pm

      Hello Kirsten, Our wine team recommend that you try classic wines from classic wine regions as a starting point such as Bordeaux or Burgundy. Wine regions that are easy to get to and near beautiful places include Champagne which is 45 minutes out of Paris and Chianti easily reached from Florence. I hope this is helpful – we would love to hear where you choose to go and your wine experiences.

  • somesunplease
    Wednesday 22nd December 2010 3:11 pm

    Thankyou! Great to know where to concentrate my efforts. I shall share some holiday pics in the New Year. Am leaning towards Burgundy/Champagne/Loire Valley regions. Love the wines they produce which is of course a plus 😉

  • rahuldua
    Wednesday 6th April 2011 3:53 pm


    I am looking to know from all you WSET Diploma holders if it is feasible to pursue the diploma whilst in Dubai. I’ve finished the advanced course two years ago, but am hesitant to pursue the diploma via distance learning cause I hear its very hard to do without any mentors and classes..

    Comments / Suggestions.. ???

  • Grapevine
    Thursday 7th April 2011 8:52 am

    Hi Rahuldua, Have you checked with the Emirates Academy whether they plan to hold WSET Diploma courses?
    I’ll see if I can find out any other information for you. Thanks for dropping by Grapevine.

    Tuesday 19th April 2011 1:53 pm


    I am French and i come in Dubaï soon! To meet you would be a pleasure

    Bye – Gautier

    • Grapevine
      Tuesday 19th April 2011 2:39 pm

      Do drop into one of the MMI shops when you arrive to get the form to apply for your alcohol license. Our staff will help you with the application and will also be happy to show you our range of French wines!

  • Tarek
    Sunday 15th April 2012 7:06 pm


    Do you have an idea where WSET courses are currently taking place in Dubai and if there’s full day courses instead of the weekly hourly ones.


    • Grapevine
      Sunday 15th April 2012 8:24 pm

      The Emirate Academy hosts wine courses for the public. The courses range from absolute beginners through to WSET advance level 3 which starts to become a pretty serious qualification.

      Course details can be found on their website

      I hope this helps….

      The Wine Team

  • Harish.
    Friday 20th July 2012 4:34 pm

    Please let me know the right wine and corresponding food/cheese to have for diabetics.Thanks

    • Grapevine
      Thursday 23rd August 2012 10:57 am

      Thank you for your message. Though we would love to help, we don’t have such expertise in-house therefore we would recommend that you check with your Doctor / Nutritionist as they should be able to assist you. Almost all wines will have a certain amount of residual sugar, but some more so than others. If you have any further queries or would like more information please do not hesitate to contact us.

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