Winers and Whiners

 Here’s a cautionary tale about people taking life way too seriously:Krunch Kretschmar, disgruntled sommelier

A Chicago woman named Cecilia Groark signed up to take a class in food and wine pairing. The class was to be conducted by Krunch Kretschmar, a local wine retailer and sommelier. According to his website, Mr. Kretschmar is a Lithuanian-born immigrant who studied wine with the
Rothschild family in France and has attained the title of International Grand Confrerie Sommelier, whatever that may be.

Ms. Groark says that she purchased her ticket for the class online through Groupon, but was not told where the class would be held. On the day in question, she emailed Kretschmar to inquire about the location. He called and informed her that since she did not reply to an earlier email, he had given her seat away. Frustrated, Groark posted a negative review on Yelp, complaining about the poor treatment she had received.

Reportedly, Kretschmar then set up a blog in Groark’s name, and made the following claims: that Groark had been fired from her previous job after embezzling funds to support her drug habit, that she had logged time in the Cook County jail, and that she had turned to the world’s oldest profession to earn money to feed her addiction. The idea was that if anyone Googled Cecilia Groark, they would discover this “information.” Groark has filed suit in Cook County Circuit Court, asking $650,000 in damages to compensate her for defamation and emotional distress.

What would Kretschmar have done if Groark had attended the class, and had the temerity to disagree with him about food and wine pairing? One can easily visualize him pulling out an AK-47 and spraying her with bullets in a dispassionate act of execution.

It would be a relief for all of us if some of these people would stop, take a deep breath, and realize that they were dealing with fermented grape juice.


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