When Robert Bolden decided he wanted to start his own business, he talked to his friends, family and colleagues and received some great advice that led him to open WineStyles.  WineStyles is all about demystifying wine and making it accessible for everyone.  From tastings to educational classes and trips, their goal is to help customers taste, learn and enjoy wine. In addition to sampling and selling wine, they also offer cheese, gourmet foods, coffee, tea, chocolate and craft beer.  A key component of their business is their wine club where you can hang out with your friends in their clubhouse, bring a sandwich and enjoy their vast selection.

What is the biggest challenge you’ve faced professionally? – As far as my entire career goes, I would say getting assigned to a food plant that was on the brink of closing and helping to turn it around.

What has been your most important achievement professionally?  – Growing the WineStyles business.

Tell us a little about your family. – I have a great son Tyler who is going in to his senior year at Mount Michael.  I couldn’t be prouder of the kind of person he is! My parents and brother are in Chicago, and they provide lots of encouragement and love!

What do you see as one of the biggest turning points in your life? – My first job out of college.  Being out on your own, starting with nothing and learning to make your way was a big turning point!

What is your favorite thing to do on a day off? – Travel to new places.

What is the most unique or interesting thing about you that most people probably don’t know? – I played baseball on a summer team with Kirby Puckett. I batted 3rd and he batted 6th…  obviously I peaked early and he kept getting better!!!

What are you the most proud of? – My son Tyler.

What is the best piece of advice you’ve ever received? – Don’t fall in love with a business. Find out what the owner of that business does, and if you enjoy those things, you will succeed.

What is the one goal you would most like to accomplish? – Too tough to limit myself to one goal.

If you could have a super power, what would it be? – The ability to show people the way to their individual freedom, whatever that happens to be.

What are your plans for retirement? – Wow, don’t plan to retire in the sense of do nothing… travel will always be part of my passion.

What is your greatest talent that you don’t utilize in your daily work life? – Athletics.

Which talent would you most like to have? – I would love to be able to play a musical instrument.  My dad was a drummer, but it must have skipped a generation.

What is your favorite book or the last good book you read? – The Blair Years, a chronicle of Tony Blair’s rise.

What is your favorite movie? – Enter the Dragon

What is your favorite TV show? – Not a big TV fan.

What is your favorite local restaurant? – Too tough to call!!!! So many good ones!

If you could have dinner with one famous person from the past or present, who would it be? – Nelson Mandela

If our readers would like to contact you, how should they do so?  – Stop in to WineStyles, 1006 south 74th street (74th and Pacific, north side of the street), or email rbolden@winestyles.net or visit Winestyles.net.