Andrew Smith

Wine Rack, Welwyn

When did you first develop a passion for wine?

I started working in a wine shop when I was 18 and was lucky enough to have a really energetic manager whose enthusiasm for wine just rubbed off on me, and I've been getting more and more excited by it ever since.

It's our round - what are you having?

I'll have an Edgars Golden

Ale from the Vale

Brewery, please.

What would you recommend to a customer wanting to splash out?

It's a tough choice, but I think La Croix du Prieuré by Bernard Magrez from the C ôtes d e Blaye is my pick from our current range.

If you could be reincarnated, would you still work in the drinks industry?

Yes, definitely. No other industry can boast such a vast array of passionate, interesting people. Not to mention all the fantastic things you get to taste, too .

If you could have three wishes to improve your working day, what would they be?

More tasting, less paperwork and constant sunshine - I always notice that everyone always seems happier when it's sunny .

Can you give us an unusual food and wine matching tip?

Fish and

chips with Champagne. I stumbled across it entirely by chance and I must say it works beautifully . The acidity in the Champagne cuts right through the fattiness of the fish and chips.

Tell us something about yourself that would surprise your friends.

I'm actually a pretty good cook but don't tell them or they'll all be after a free dinner on me .

Have you ever served any famous customers in the shop?

Kim Wilde and Alesha Dixon are regular customers.

When you're not working, how do you seek your thrills?

I'm a

festival man to be honest. I'll be heading off to Glastonbury in June . Here's hoping the sun hangs around until then so I can enjoy all that

pear cider in the open air.