FRiends And Wines

A little About Us?

Click here for an Example of our events

Name one other club/organization in the Twin Cities that caters to upscale professionals that want to meet others and try new wines, food and new venues... neither can we.  Thus the genesis of Friends and Wines.

The Owners: Dennis & Ellen Guldan are from New Brighton. Ellen is originally from South Dakota and Dennis is originally from Wisconsin. We own a magazine business.

History of the group: About five years ago, looking for things to entertain us, we joined a wine group in St Paul. Shortly after joining the group of 800 wine lovers the owner decided to stop running the group and lacking an organizer had plans to shut it down.

Long story short we took over the group. We changed the group’s name to The MN Wine Club, a club we still own and run free events with. For the past five years we have had a winery tours most months and a free house party most months. At the wineries we all buy and share a bottle of wine and bring food to share. At the house parties we all bring wine and food to share.

But the problem is increasingly the wineries are not allowing food and after 4-5 times to a winery it loses charm. And with the house parties, let’s just say some people are more than a bit cheap and some have issues. Add to that our palates are desiring better wines and food paired by professionals.
So we decided to float the concept of a group of professionals getting together, meeting each other regularly to learn about great wines and the pairing with great foods. Thus the essence of Friends and Wines.

There are a couple things about our group that make us different than most. Unlike a regular wine tasting we want this also to be a social group. A place, as our name says, to make Friends. We want it to be more than just wine and food, to that end we want to go out as a group after the tasting.

We want to bring in some great wine people to show us and let us taste some great wines, that we can afford and enjoy. Hidden gems as it were. And lastly we want a group people that can pay a reasonable price and just show-up and enjoy not needing to bring wines or foods.

A few rules: We have three rules in The MN Wine Club. Which is free

1. Sign-up, 2. Show Up , 3. Don’t be a Pain In The A..

Not much to ask for in a free group, yet about half the public can’t follow those rules.

So with our new group we are reducing the rules to one:  Don’t be a Pain In the A.. We are charging for most events and will not be giving refunds, so if you cancel at the eleventh hour, as many do, it's on YOUR DIME!

It costs money to run a group: deposits, promotions, marketing, websites, venue and event research all before the first event. We are thus charging for our group whether you sign-up for events or not. There will be an annual fee of $30 for a single and $50 for a single plus one. Our Plus One is for couples and those that want to bring a friend. That is in addition to events fees which we expect to be about $20 for members and $30 for non-members. We provide all food and wine, presentor and venue.

The problem with not showing up is, venues put on extra wait staff and by taking a limited spot, most likely someone else could not attend. For that reason, we will have a no-refund policy. We HATE no-shows.

As far as our only real rule: Don’t be a Pain in the A--. That can’t be totally defined here but we all know it when we see it.

A few are: If you come to the event to sell people something, you’ll be asked to leave. If you are being rude and obnoxious we’ll show you the door. If you come to brag to everyone about your: “pick your topic” or cannot be a mature adult, to the door with you. We hate to bring these up, but after five years, we have seen it all.

So if getting together with other professional adults, learning about and enjoying great food and wine and making friends sounds like something you might be interested in, we welcome you to join us either as a member or try us out once and see.


Dennis & Ellen

Questions please email us at

Friends And Wines, PO Box 120089, New Brighton, MN 55112 612-868-9169