A Taste of the Good Life

A linebacker with the San Diego Chargers, Shaun Phillips has several passions greater than football. As part owner of Colorado Springs, Colorado-based The Pinery (www.thepinery.com), the highly rated, full-service wedding and event center, the 29-year-old Phillips enjoys pursuing new business ventures–particularly those connected to culinary specialties. Phillips, who holds a bachelor’s degree in restaurant and hotel management from Purdue University, loves entertaining at home, exposing friends and family to the history and culture of new and tasty discoveries. He took a few minutes away from training camp to share the great affection he has for wines and cheeses.

Favorite city for vacation:
“Sao Paulo and Florianopolis, Brazil. It’s away from the madness of Carnaval.”

Favorite international wine destination:
“Buenos Aires, Argentina. I love Malbec and that’s the region, but not just because of the wine. The people are nice and the steaks–best with red wine, are incredible.”

Favorite thank you gift:
“A personalized cheese plate that includes a six-year aged white cheddar Wisconsin cheese from master cheese maker Joe Widmer (www.widmerscheese.com). It’s nutty and sweet and good with wine.”

Favorite place to dine:

“I prefer to cook for friends and family. I make my own pasta, my own sauces, and fresh bread. It allows to me to eat healthier and be more creative.”

Favorite restaurant for entertaining clients/business partners:

“Pamplemousse Grille (www.pgrille.com) in San Diego. Jeffrey Strauss has cooked for presidents and uses only foods and fruits that are in season. He’s an amazing chef.”

Favorite wine bar:
“My house. I have roughly 150 bottles from around the world.”

Favorite stem and tableware:
Match 1995 Pewter (www.match1995.com), handmade pewter from artisans in Northern Italy. Its products are lead-free and food safe.

Favorite wine and cheese pairing:
Pinot Noir and Pleasant Ridge Reserve American Wisconsin (www.uplandscheese.com). “It has been awarded best American cheese two years in a row.”