Nothing to Wine About Here…

Hello to you from Columbus, Ohio!
I’ve lived in Massachusetts for a dozen years, but I return “home” to Columbus twice a year.

(Why change dentists when two of the best are in Columbus? I’m looking at you, Drs. Tom and Cheryl Hoffman!)

In Ohio, I get to see friends, meet with lots of fabulous Women on Fire, talk about Women on Fire, celebrate Women on Fire, eat exotic ice cream at Jeni’s, shop at Easton Town Center, and leave with bright, shiny teeth.  How can you beat that? 😉   I love it!!

Anyway, the real reason I popped into your inbox today is because I’m so thrilled to introduce you to this week’s Woman on Fire — Laurie Forster.

I chose her because I wanted for you to meet someone who was very successful in one career, yet her heart longed to be fulfilled doing something else.  When we first met, she was unsure of what that was.

Then, she took time to discover it.  And, once she did, she leapt in and step-by-step became an expert—and now respected and well-known — in the thing she totally loves.  And, during it all, she transformed from a single woman, travelling the world, selling software to being married with a daughter, travelling the world, educating people about wine!

Laurie Forster is The Wine Coach®.

An original Women on Fire member and co-author of the Women on Fire book, Laurie’s business has grown from leading wine-tastings to leading wine tours in Europe, conducting corporate events, writing articles and a book, creating DVDs, including her latest Weird Science: Food and Wine Reactions, and making appearances all over the country and in major news outlets.

In fact, if you are reading this before 3:30PM EST on Wednesday, December 9, tune into Sirius XM’s Living Today Show on Martha Stewart Radio. She’s the guest!

I am so proud to introduce Laurie to you!


Debbie Phillips
Women on Fire™

This week’s Woman on Fire: Laurie Forster

Joined Women on Fire: 2003

Laurie Forster
Easton, Maryland

Wine educator, speaker and author of The Sipping Point

Total number of Women on Fire tea parties or events attended: 7
In New York City, Columbus, Ohio and Washington, DC

How did you come to be a part of Women On Fire®?
Debbie has been my coach and a dear friend since 2000.

Over the years she helped me get in touch with what I was on fire about (wine!) and create a business around my gifts. When she decided to start Women on Fire tea parties I was so excited to meet all the other amazing women she worked with. Then Debbie asked me to be a co-author for Women on Fire: 20 Inspiring Women Share Their Life Secrets (and Save You Years of Struggle!), and I was elated! Women on Fire is the connection and support that is so essential to my continual growth.

What would you like other Women On Fire to know about you, your work, and your life?
I like to joke that growing up I thought wine came in a box and pink was the most popular color. Like most children in the 1980s in America I was not really exposed to fine wine until I graduated college. When I started attending business dinners and watching people order wine off of a list I was intrigued as well as intimidated.

In 1997, I moved into a software sales role, and I started entertaining clients. In an effort to impress them, I started taking wine classes. I fell in love INSTANTLY—with wine and one of my instructors, Chef Michael Forster.

I began to take more classes, taste as many wines as I could, and started to have a nagging feeling that software wasn’t my thing. That’s when I met Debbie.  She helped me do the soul searching that led me to take a sabbatical in 2001 to study wine. I have been studying, teaching and travelling ever since.  (Oh, and I married that chef, Michael Forster!)

In 2008 I published my first book The Sipping Point which features the essentials of wine in plain English and with a sense of humor.

I am so proud of this book because it is the book I wanted when I began my journey into wine. This month I am releasing my first DVD entitled Weird Science: Food and Wine Reactions.

Now people all over the country can learn the secrets of food and wine pairing with me right in the comfort of their own home. I have set it up so you can invite friends over to enjoy together.

I feel like one of the luckiest people in the world. I actually look forward to Mondays! I can’t wait to get back to work on my business as The Wine Coach where I help people demystify wine one glass at a time.

What strategy keeps you going?
Take action. Debbie (and her partner and husband Rob Berkley) always encourage me to continually take small steps towards my goal. It is amazing how a bunch of small steps results in big progress.

Which of the 20 Women On Fire aspirations speaks to you the most?
Aspiration #8: I invest in myself and my potential.

One thing that I truly believe in is continuing to learn and grow. Each year I invest thousands of dollars to further my wine education, coaching, personal development and travel experiences. In order to help more people and to be the best wine educator I can, it is critical for me to invest in myself.

A favorite or inspiring Women on Fire moment?
Last year Debbie brought together all of the Women on Fire book co-authors in New York. Even though I’d read each women’s story it was the first time we all met face-to-face. We each told our stories, the ones we shared in the book. It was electric with love, support and energy. I wish I could have bottled that feeling. That is the same feeling experienced at tea parties, too.

What is the most rewarding connection you have made so far from Women On Fire?
What is so fabulous and wonderful about Women on Fire is that there are so many layers of connections. There are connections I have made at the tea parties that have led to others. I have made new friends there, brought old friends and know that tea parties are inevitably full of women I want to meet. In the end the most rewarding thing is that instant, safe feeling I get at Women on Fire events…LOVE that!

What does being a part of Women On Fire mean to you?
Having a group of women that support me and my dreams. Knowing that my fellow WOF are there when I need to share, cry and to celebrate. I also love being there to help others find what they are on fire about and turn it into a raging blaze!

What would you like to tell other Women on Fire about their own hopes and dreams?
You can have the life you want. I’m not saying it will be a piece of cake but with hard work, it’s possible.

Debbie helped me dig down deep to see that my love of wine and my ability to share it with people in a simple way was a gift not just a hobby. I realized I could help people understand and enjoy wine more by making it more approachable. People that see your light will be there to support you and to cheer you on. You already have all that you need to get there—now use it!

We can’t let you go, Laurie, before you tell us your current favorite red wine? White wine? Sparkling wine?
Red: Aldo Conterno Gran Bussia Barolo for special occasions and more affordable Italian Reds like Vietti Barbera or Cusumano Nero d’Avola for everyday.

White: Anton Bauer Reserve Gruner Veltliner from Austria or Morgadio Albarino from Spain

Sparkling: I LOVE Champagne especially small growers like Pierre Peters and Louis Sacy but for everyday I always have sparkling Italian Prosecco or Spanish Cava on hand.
For more information on Laurie’s newest DVD, go to: