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ASU alumnus Bruce Cochran to offer basic food and wine information at community outreach seminar


Whether you're in a restaurant or entertaining at home, picking the best wine for that special dish or that special person is more fun if you know the basics. The Continuing Education and Community Outreach (CECO) program at Arkansas State University is offering a course that will provide these basics. Participants will sample a variety of wines with long-time food and wine educator Bruce Cochran, learning what makes some food and wine combinations work and which pitfalls to avoid.

“Which Food, Which Wine?” will take place April 3 at Cooper Alumni Center, 2600 Alumni Boulevard, from 7-9 p.m. Cost is $25 for one person or $40 for two people.  To register, call the CECO office at (870) 972-3052.

ASU alumnus Cochran of Little Rock, known as "Arkansas' foremost authority on wine" and "the state's leading wine expert," will lead the seminar.   Cochran has been in the wine trade since 1978 as a retailer, wholesaler, importer, writer, and teacher.  In 1982, he began teaching wine courses at the University of Arkansas-Little Rock’s Continuing Education Department and the Arkansas Extended Learning Center.

"I grew up on a farm in north central Arkansas in Fulton County a few miles from Salem," he says. "I spent many years milking cows, raising hogs, hauling hay, etc., and feel fortunate to have experienced a way of life rarely seen today. In high school, I was in FFA (Future Farmers of America), tasting milk samples and giving speeches in the public speaking competition. Now I taste and write about wines, teach continuing education classes on food and wine, and travel around the world, work that began while I was still at ASU."

He became interested in wine as an ASU student while working in a large wine and spirits store on the county line. He took a wine book and started learning.

He has conducted over 2,000 public wine events in the United States, Canada, Italy, France, Chile and Argentina and in over 30 towns in his home state of Arkansas. He also has hosted over 200 wine dinners, and has organized and led food and wine-oriented excursions to four continents.

A 1983 graduate of the German Wine Academy in Oestrich-Winkel, Germany, he is a founding member of the Little Rock Wine Society, the Little Rock Chapter of the German Wine Society, and has been quoted in USA Today, Los Angeles Times, Wine Spectator, Wines and Vines, and several major newspapers in the U.S. and Canada. He has appeared on television’s Entertainment Tonight.

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