Wine Situation Final Five (Now With Drunk Dialing!)

The Wine Situation hosts everyone from winemakers to writers to find out what a person’s situation is…with wine. It’s the solo season with host Ellen Clifford, but listen in with a glass, and nobody is drinking alone! In lieu of guests, at the end of every action packed episode Ellen is phoning a friend with her Final Five questions. This week Ellen talks to Maryam Ahmed, star of SommTV’s “Sparklers” and creator of Field Blends, a new wine destination experience. Check out the full episode here THE FINAL FIVE (Ever so slightly edited for length!): QUESTION ONE Ellen: Question number one, whatcha drinking? What are you into these days? Maryam: I’m a really big advocate of white wine-shocker I grew up in the Finger Lakes —I really like acid driven wines so am drinking a fair amount of Riesling from the Finger Lakes , but I really also like Bourgogne Aligoté , and there’s a lot of really cool field blends coming out of California. One of my favorites is called White Light , it’s by Hobo Wine Company, but Folk Machine is the wine brand it comes from. QUESTION TWO Ellen: Question number two is do you have a favorite pairing? Any kind of beverage, any kind of food. Maryam: A fairly obvious one, but one I wouldn’t want to leave behind is Champagne , or bubbles really, with French fries. I love French fries. I like the texture of bubbles that makes eating fatty foods feel less guilty. One thing that’s an odd one, that isn’t wine related, is I’m a huge fan of pickles, and I really like instead of a dirty olive martini, a dirty pickle martini. I like the pickle martini with popcorn. QUESTION THREE Ellen: Is there a wine that made you want to get in the wine world? Maryam: No, but I’m always happy to answer this question because for me the “aha” wine moment wasn’t a wine, it was a moment of “aha, wine is powerful” in that I saw people coming together and enjoying themselves. It wasn’t about which wine, just what I saw wine being able to do for people, bringing them together. QUESTION FOUR Ellen: Do you have a dream destination for Field Blends? Maryam: I’ve never gotten to go, but I’d really like to explore the Okinagan Valley. I think it would be really cool to bring people to that region. QUESTION FIVE Ellen: The last question, and your answer can be related to wine or not, is what’s bringing you joy these days? Maryam: Simple things. I love the beach; I go as often as I can. And then, I’ve had time to cook for myself more. That used to be such a big part of my life and then I started a business and got a little bit busy. I just had a small girls’ dinner, and I love cooking Pakistani and Indian food for people. It’s just nice to have home cooking like that. *** Follow Maryam @goodfriendsgoodfood and @maryamandcompany, and her website is Check out the previous Wine Situation podcast with Lamar Woods here .