Pearl Oliver is the resort sommelier at Reuben’s at the One & Only hotel and national chair of BLACC, the Black Cellar Club.
Q & A with Pearl
Question: What’s your goal/vision for this conference?
Answer: It is extremely important for us to honour and recognise that success doesn’t have to mean just owning a business. I see a conference like this establishing a network for those who would like to grow or diversify the craft.
Question: Name one person in this broader industry whom you look up to or a person who you really admire and why?
Answer: I’m inspired by Siba Mtongana @sibamtongana – mother, wife and business owner. She has an intense drive for both business and family and found a way to incorporate both in her everyday lifestyle. Ingrid Jones (@jonesingrid) is also an inspiration. She is a powerhouse of a woman who stands for loyalty to her country and believes it sharing new honestly. She is feisty while remaining a great role model. I love to refer to her has my wine mother!
Question: Fill in the following: Transformation in this industry (name your specific field or cause) will happen when….
Answer: There has already been a major transformation in the wine industry since more POC have been trained in the industry and more POC have been opening businesses ranging from winemaking to bars, small restaurant and diners.
Question: What would you love people to know about you and your work?
Answer: People may not know this, but I do not drink expensive Champagne every day! When I started more than 15-years-ago, POC didn’t think anyone could make an honest and honourable career of it. It was hard and I had to prove myself and get buy-in from my family too. The industry I work in changes constantly and one has to continually sharpen one’s skills. We need more POC to step into positions of ownership where possible.