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Fast Forward Appoints Jesse Rodriguez as Strategic Director of Wine and Spirits

Posted on September 30, 2019

 San Diego, Calif.—Advanced Sommelier Jesse Rodriguez tapped as Strategic Director of Wine + Spirits by Fast Forward, a public relations, event production and experiential marketing agency headquartered in San Diego, CA.

Based in New York City, Rodriguez adds a bi-coastal presence to Fast Forward. Serving as a strategic counselor to its public relations and events accounts, Rodriguez brings deep knowledge and experience in the beverage trade, giving Fast Forward a unique approach to working with wine and spirit clients.

“Jesse provides our client roster with direct access to an established and recognized beverage industry leader,” said Fast Forward Partner, Michelle Metter. “Jesse’s expertise and true working knowledge of the intricacies, trends, policies, and practices that impact the wine and spirits industry drive both trade and consumer facing communication and media campaigns.”

In addition to his position as Strategic Director at Fast Forward, Rodriguez formerly held prestigious Sommelier roles at Montage Palmetto Bluff, The Grand Del Mar and The French Laundry. Rodriguez holds a master’s degree in education from Arizona State University, is an Advanced Sommelier by the American Chapter of the Court of Master Sommeliers, is credentialed as a Certified Wine Educator by the Society of Wine Educators and has completed the Diploma level through the Wine and Spirits Educational Trust (WSET).

Rodriguez’s numerous awards and accolades include, “America’s Best New Sommeliers” by Wine & Spirits Magazine, Food & Wine Magazine,, and “Los Angeles-San Diego Rising Stars” and “Best Sommelier” by San Diego Magazine and Ranch & Coast. Additionally, under Rodriguez’s leadership, Addison at the Grand Del Mar received its first nomination with the James Beard Awards, which was also the first nomination for San Diego County. His beverage programs have received the prestigious "Wine Spectator Grand Award" for 2009-2013, Wine Enthusiast’s "Ultimate Award of Distinction” in 2010 and 2011, the Santé “Wine Restaurant of the Year” award in 2010, and Wine Enthusiast’s "100 Best New Restaurants" in 2011 and 2012.

“I am ecstatic to join Fast Forward’s Wine + Spirits division,” said Rodriguez. “As a member of the agency’s sommelier advisory board for more than five years, I have had the unique opportunity to help shape its leading trade educational experiences. I look forward to taking on a larger role at Fast Forward, working to craft strategic and impactful communication programs within an industry I am so passionate about.”

Fast Forward works with hundreds of beverage brands annually on public relations campaigns and event productions that span the United States, including SommCon, a bi-coastal wine conference, and the San Diego Bay Wine + Food Festival, which is consistently ranked by BizBash as a Top 100 Event in Southern California, and recently named by USA Today Travel’s 10Best as the top General Food Festival in the United States.

As an award-winning turnkey event management, public relations and experiential marketing agency, Fast Forward specializes in the creation of world-class trade and consumer campaigns and events in the wine, beer, culinary, and hospitality industries. From elite wine and food experiences for thousands of discriminating palates to intimate brand-to-press networking events in the heart of Manhattan, campaigns by Fast Forward create joyful experiences that accelerate human connections and put brands in front of key influencers. Fast Forward is the producer of Editor Showcase the EatingWell & Health Fit Foodie Festival & 5K, SommCon, and the San Diego Bay Wine + Food Festival, Southern California’s largest luxury wine and culinary experience now in its 16th year.

Region: other
Job Function: Strategic Director of Wine and Spirits

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