Laura Maniec is more than just an oenophile… she’s a master. Maniec earned her Master Sommelier designation, the highest accreditation given to wine professionals, in 2009 after nearly eight years of intensive study. She is currently just one of 20 women to have the designation. After consulting and working with restaurants across the country, Maniec opened Corkbuzz Restaurant & Wine Bar in NYC. She is now the CEO and co-founder of three Corkbuzz wine studios, including one here in Charlotte. She recently opened The Cellar at Corkbuzz in the adjoining space to Corkbuzz in SouthPark.
Running businesses in multiple states and finalizing her plan for her upcoming wedding, Maniec is always on the go.
Here is what her typical day looks like:
7:30/8 a.m. … Time to go! I wake up daily around 7:30/8a.m. I rarely sleep past 8a.m., but occasionally on the weekends I sleep later. I never set an alarm, but my fiancé usually does. His alarm is a pretty weird one that sounds likes Elves and he hits the snooze button 10 times. Between that and my dog licking my face the moment I open my eyes, it is hard to go back to sleep. Plus my mind starts racing and I need to get up and start moving.
7:45 a.m. … I like to get my day started by doing my workouts. I make coffee and then I either go to SoulCycle (in NYC), do my Physique 57 on demand workouts (if traveling), or I hit a Barre class like Pure Barre (when I’m in Charlotte). I also love going to Flywheel when I’m in Charlotte. My business partner works out with Mary Dare and my managers at Corkbuzz have also trained with her. Since she is so personable and positive, I am going to start working out with her next time I am in Charlotte. I also love the Harris YMCA.
I just started leaving my phone outside of my bedroom, so usually check my phone while I am having my coffee. I check my emails and the NY Times app to get my news. On the weekends, I still get my NY Times printed copy delivered.
9 a.m. (depending on workout class times) … Time for breakfast! I usually have breakfast after my workouts. My typical breakfast is granola and fresh fruit or yogurt with local honey and/or eggs with avocado and fruit.
After breakfast, it’s time to get dressed and ready for the day. I definitely don’t plan out my outfits the night before, unless I am traveling. Generally, I wear cocktail style dresses to work with heels. I usually have 1-2 outfit changes before I am out the door. If I know I am hosting a wine dinner or giving a speech in the evening, I tend to dress up a little.
When it comes to my daily morning beauty routine, it’s pretty simple. I shower, wash my face, curl my hair and then I hit the road. I apply very simple make-up, usually just lipstick and moisturizer. I do get my hair blown out once a week at Dry Bar. I am obsessed! I can usually just maintain it all week with some dry shampoo and a curling iron.
My uncle has the best coffee at his home and my aunt has to-go cups, so I usually make my iced coffee and get in the car around 10a.m. to head to Corkbuzz Charlotte when I’m in town.
10:15 a.m. … Once I’m at Corkbuzz, I check in with the team, check my emails, and get caught up with our general manager, Elizabeth, and our event director, Barbara. From the time I get in until lunchtime, my day consists of email follow up, social media management, and staff training/meetings.
12:30 p.m. … I try to either bring my lunch or I go to whole foods and get something light because Chef Allen Evans makes a family meal for our entire staff around 4p.m. and it is always delicious, wholesome, and made with love.
1:00 p.m. … My afternoons are spent planning wine classes, staff education, meeting with potential clients, fixing things in the restaurant, and getting ready for PM service.
4:00 p.m. … The aforementioned family meal and it is always amazing. If I have an opportunity to eat out, I like eating at Good Food on Montford or Dogwood. The hospitality and the food at both are amazing.
If I have a stay-at-home evening, I usually cook dinner with my uncle when I’m in Charlotte or cook dinner with my fiancé when at home in NYC. I love cooking roasted chicken, lots of veggies or making Sunday supper with a big pot of tomato sauce and meatballs, sausage. I love hanging out at my Shelter Island, NY house on the weekends.
5:00 p.m. … Dinner service at the restaurant commences!
9-10 p.m. … This is typically the time my day ends, it just depends on what is going on that evening.
At the end of the night, I usually sit at the bar and order off of our menu. I usually like fish or chicken or whatever Chef Allen cooks. I like to try our food and think about wine pairings and often ask our bartenders or sommeliers what they are excited about.
Most days I have a few sips of wine, but I don’t drink seven days a week. These days I try to drink once per week because I am getting ready for my wedding and trying to be as fit as possible.
10-10:30 p.m. … Time to decompress! At the end of a day, I like to meditate and I always drink Rishi Valerium Dreams tea.
11-11:30p.m. … This is my usual bedtime, but sometimes I will stay up late and binge watch episodes of Seinfeld or Curb Your Enthusiasm. Good night!