Published: November 22, 2023

Wine Wisdom

IMG_20220924_195224 - Brian Hollingsworth

Meet Brian

Meet Brian Hollingsworth, a Partner at Clarus, navigating the complex world of sales and use tax compliance with a clear, concise, and confident touch. From the Southern charm of eastern North Carolina to the scenic simplicity of Treasure Valley, Idaho, Brian brings a bit of flair to both his professional and personal pursuits. Brian has not only excelled in his professional endeavors but has also cultivated a unique and fulfilling hobby – wine making.

Professional Pride and Accomplishments at Clarus

Brian takes immense pride in his role at Clarus, where he contributes to providing highly effective and cost-efficient sales and use tax compliance solutions for small to mid-sized companies. His satisfaction is derived from enabling these businesses to focus on growth while navigating the complex landscape of tax regulations. Brian finds particular joy in receiving notes from CFOs or VPs of Tax expressing their appreciation for successfully defending sales and use tax audits or securing tax refunds.

Personal Tidbits

A fun fact about Brian is that he grew up in a county with more pigs than people, offering a glimpse into his rural upbringing. Despite now residing in Idaho, he remains connected to his Southern roots.

Wine Making: A Solo Mission

Brian’s hobby of wine making serves as a testament to his clear dedication and determination. Inspired by his love for trying new wines and their pairings with food, Brian embarked on this solo mission when he moved to Idaho. Planting 250 vines, including merlot and syrah, he turned his location into a perfect setting for a small vineyard. This endeavor, spanning the past 4-5 years, brings him a profound sense of accomplishment.

Motivation and Dedication

Brian’s motivation for wine making extends beyond personal enjoyment. He honors his children through his craft, dedicating the syrah to Spencer and the merlot to JJ. Three bottles of each vintage are set aside, patiently waiting for the day his children can savor the fruits of his labor.

Memorable Moments in Wine Making

Some of Brian’s favorite moments revolve around his first harvest of merlot and syrah. Harvesting and crushing the grapes, as well as bottling the harvest one year later, stand out as milestones in his journey.

Wine Wisdom – Advice for Aspiring Wine Makers

For those considering a similar pursuit, Brian advises skipping the challenges of growing a vineyard and opting for fresh grapes or frozen must. Having experienced the tremendous effort required in managing even a small vineyard, he emphasizes the hard work involved.

Key Lessons Learned

An important lesson Brian imparts is to bottle the wine even if it seems “off” in taste or smell, as there’s a touch of magic that happens over time in the bottle.

While Brian keeps his hobby separate from his professional life, which you can read more about here, his dedication and passion for both aspects of his life shine through. Whether defending against tax audits or nurturing a vineyard, Brian’s commitment to excellence is evident, making him a standout professional and hobbyist.

Clarion Newsletter December 2023