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Learn All About Booze Online From Boston-Area Experts

Drink wine, ask questions about rum, and more

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Shelves of wine bottles and a chalkboard menu inside a wine bar.
You can’t sit inside Rebel Rebel right now — but you can take the bar’s wine classes online
Rachel Leah Blumenthal/Eater

With most people spending a lot more time at home due to the spread of COVID-19, education has moved online — not just all the local schools, but food and drink classes, too. Local restaurant and beverage industry folks have been taking to the internet to offer tutorials of all kinds, from pico de gallo to hospitality sign language 101.

Whether you’re a casual enthusiast or an industry professional yourself, here are four ways to learn a thing or two about booze, without leaving the couch, from Boston-area experts.

Know of other Boston-area bartenders sharing knowledge online? Email

Online Wine School With Rebel Rebel

“Social distancing got you feeling weird?” asks Somerville natural wine bar Rebel Rebel. “Wine school is back to save us.”

Every Sunday at noon, classes will “meet” on Zoom to discuss natural wines from places like the Loire Valley (March 22), Australia (April 5), and beyond. Participants can choose to order the featured wines ahead of time for pickup in Cambridge or local delivery (Somerville, Cambridge, and Watertown addresses) via Violette Imports, with ordering now available for the next four classes, but the classes will be kept general, so they’ll still be informative for those who don’t have the specific wines.

To sign up for a class (or all of them), send $10 per class you want to take via Venmo to @REBELREBELFUND, and you’ll get a Zoom link to join the class.

Custom Cocktails and Basic Tutorials With Naomi Levy

Eastern Standard alum and local bar legend Naomi Levy is soliciting requests via Instagram: Send her a message with the ingredients you have at home, and she’ll create a custom cocktail for you. She’ll also be posting basic tutorials; stay tuned to her account for updates.

In return, she’s asking those who are able to donate to this fundraiser to help support Cambridge- and Somerville-area hospitality workers. Those who need assistance can fill out Levy’s form here, and she’ll also help with budgeting and financial planning for those who need it.

All Sorts of Things With Maggie Campbell

Campbell is president and head distiller at Privateer Rum in Ipswich. In addition to the aforementioned hospitality sign language video, she has been hosting “at home happy hour” Q&A sessions via live videos on Instagram, discussing everything from distilling and rum to bees and baking.

Follow along on Instagram for updates; Campbell expects that she’ll be hosting these on Mondays, Wednesdays, and Fridays for the time being.

Drinking Well at Home With Local Restaurant Staff

In addition to Campbell’s own series above, Privateer is also posting a series of 60-second videos featuring local restaurant staff mixing up their favorite rum-based drinks and sharing the recipe and helpful hints. Viewers are encouraged to tip them via Venmo for sharing their knowledge, just as if they were sitting across from them at an actual bar.

Keep an eye on Privateer’s Instagram or Facebook page for these.