Jeff’s Corner

Believe it or not, I’m going to be brief this week and take somewhat of a personal slant. The handsome young man in the photo (on the right, not left) is Daniel Rios. Daniel was one of my most exceptional students when I was teaching in the Hospitality Management Dept. at Del Mar College in Corpus Christi.

He was in my Beverage Management class in the spring of 2005 and graduated that semester, which also happened to be the last semester I taught at the college before Kathy and I moved to Fredericksburg. He actually visited Grape Creek with that class on a field trip, and Debi and Jason did presentations for them. He could not believe the changes!

Daniel and his lovely wife Emily now live in Queens in New York City where he is the chocolatier for an elite chocolate company. Emily does career counseling for young adults. I can’t find words to express how proud I am for what he has accomplished, and how far he has come from Corpus Christi.

He went to some effort to find me, and there is nothing that makes a teacher feel more rewarded than having a former student do so. He did a Google search for “Jeff Binney-wine” and, lo and behold, Jeff’s Corner popped up on Facebook.

Daniel and Emily went on one of my tours last Monday, and seeing him listening to me with the same attentiveness he had in class peeled back 11 years as if they were 11 days. We had a great time catching up, and I learned that some of his friends that I taught have been successful in culinary careers around the country as well.

So, you two please stay in touch. Every teacher worth a damn dreams of success for his students. Great job, Daniel!