Eric Rohleder was our visionary founder. Originally from Austin, Texas, Eric attended the University of Virginia, but his passion for cooking drove him to study culinary arts at Le Cordon Bleu. After his chef’s training, Eric was a chef in and around Austin for a number of years until his love for wine took over.
It was kismet that led Eric, and a love of wine, of course, to host a wine party one evening. While hosting, he got an offer to join Glazer’s Distributors in their Domain and Estates Division, and the rest as they say, is history.
This opportunity gave Eric the chance to discover fine wines, and it helped him develop a keen palate, not only for wine, but for beer and spirits too.
He later moved to DC to work as a wine consultant and buyer for Chain Bridge Cellars in McLean, Virginia and while there, Eric’s drive to provide stellar customer service, and his obsession with independent producers, was born. He brings his invaluable experience and single-minded dedication to customer service to Washington, DC with his unique retail beverage concept, Cordial Fine Wine. Located at Union Market, DC’s most exciting new culinary destination, Cordial Fine Wine has already garnered a swell of media coverage and is a hit with wine and beer lovers.
Before he died of cancer in 2018, Eric had been actively pursuing the Diploma Level of the London-based Wine and Spirits Education Trust (which he describes as the MBA of the wine and spirits business). He had aspirations to attain the illustrious Master of Wine, an honored title bestowed on only 32 people in the United States.