by Kim Micke
LANGUAGE has never been a barrier for Paola Cabezas Bono and nor have her former teachers' discouraging comments.
Nothing could keep the Argentinian, who grew up in Spain, from following her dreams.
Recently, the head winemaker at Robert Channon Wines was awarded with this year's Royal Queensland Wine Show Winemaker Bursary.
Ms Cabezas Bono has lived in Australia for about 16 years.
"My (school) teacher told me that even though I had failed my English exam she would pass me, because I would never live anywhere I'd need it anyway," she said.
"My English is still not perfect, but luckily wine doesn't care what language I speak."
As a winemaking student, Ms Cabezas Bono was told that she would never get a job as a winemaker because she was a woman.
However, Ms Cabezas Bono has been in the business of wine for more than 20 years and celebrates 30 vintages as a "flying winemaker".
The winemaker has travelled and worked between Europe and Australia for years.
The scholarship involves a place at the elite 2017 Advanced Wine Assessment Course which
aims to prepare potential wine show judges.
Ms Cabezas Bono has started to hold classes at Robert Channon Wines for people who want to know more about wine.
"For so long the idea has been perpetuated that talking about wine is just for the professionals, that it requires the right language," she said. "I want to help empower people to be confident in talking about wine, choosing wines, drinking the wine they love and knowing why they do."
Cabezas Bono's classes are small, relaxed and require no previous knowledge.
Her next Wine Appreciation Class will be in the barrel room at Robert Channon Wines on July 29.
For more information visit paolathewineeducator.com.