Richard started his formal wine career in Vancouver in 1981 at Bridges restaurant. The opening of the Vancouver Mandarin Oriental Hotel in 1985 saw Richard managing the wine cellar and working the floor as sommelier in Cristal, the fine dining room in this luxury hotel.
In 1986, he moved to Alberta as importer’s agent for such wines as Chateau Mouton Rothschild, Hugel Alsace wines and California’s Opus One.
The creation in Alberta of Canada’s first privately owned wine boutique program proved to be attractive, and shortly after arriving in Calgary, Richard went to work with J.Webb Wine Merchant from 1986 until 1996.
In 1996, Richard opened Metrovino, a downtown Calgary specialty wine store, alongside the Cookbook Company Cooks and their associated cooking school. The product mix of Metrovino is quite different from the norm in the local market, with estate-bottled wines, and those of obscure origin from countries such as France and Spain being sold by a knowledgeable and passionate staff.
Currently, wine education occupies a great deal of Richard’s time, and he was both a sommelier instructor and department head for the International Sommelier Guild for several years. Currently he devotes his time to teaching courses for the French Wine Society, and a main focus, Soif de Savoir, the educational arm of Metrovino.
In his career, Richard has traveled to France (a total of over 3 years spent in the country), Spain, Italy, Germany, California, South Africa and of course, Canada. His winemaking work experience includes 5 harvests at Chateau de Beauregard in Burgundy where he was part of the winemaking team, as well as working a harvest in Oregon with Evening Land Vineyards.
Richard is also a part time freelance writer and sometime radio broadcaster about wine.