Nigel Barker’s resume is impressive to say the least: the former model spent 17 seasons as a judge on “America’s Next Top Model,” hosted “The Face,” and is a world-renowned fashion photographer. And now, Barker can add glambassador of a wine company to his list of career achievements.
Barker was recently named the U.S. glambassador of Invivo Wines, a New Zealand-based winery he discovered while shooting “America’s Next Top Model.” After hearing the announcement, we chatted with Barker about his new gig, his love of wine, and of course, brunch. Keep reading for all the details.
Tell us more about how you discovered Invivo Wines.
We were (in New Zealand) in 2008 or 2009 for “America’s Next Top Model,” and wherever I go, I’m always looking for (local) wine. Someone brought a couple of bottles to dinner, and I was really enjoying it. Then one thing led to another. It was something that I really enjoyed. When I met Tim and Rob (Invivo Wines founders), it was their personality and their novel, or more cavalier, way of breaking into the market (that I liked). They’re making wine more accessible and available.
What made you decide to partner with the brand?
I’ve done a lot of different things in my career, but I’ve never been involved with a wine before. I’ve loved wine all my life. I’ve drank wine since I was a young man. In England, I started drinking wine at the age of 14 or 15. I’ve grown up with it. But wine can often be stuffy, and I’ve always been about breaking down barriers. I think my work on “Top Model” was about breaking down the fashion industry. I felt like that was happening at Invivo Wines too. What is wine really about? Wine is about drinking, socializing with friends, having a party.
What’s your favorite wine from the brand?
I have two. It really has to do with the time of year. Right now, I’m really into the sauvignon blanc. I like the pinot noir as well.
What are your responsibilities as a Glammbassador?
I’m called the glammbassador, so there you go. That kind of explains the type of things I’ll be doing — essentially having a good time. I’m going to be hosting parties and sharing my love of wine and introducing the wine to the fashion industry.
Do you prefer to brunch in or out?
I prefer to brunch at home. I think that I make brunch almost better than anyone. I like everything to be made a certain way.
Where is your favorite place to brunch in NYC?
I really like the West Village. I like Bubby’s — that’s kind of our go-to spot. Tartine is another spot in the village.
Do you prefer Bloody Mary’s or mimosas?
If you could pick one person to brunch with — dead or alive — who would it be?
This is a hard question. I think that it’d have to be a president. I’d love to have brunch with Obama to find out what it’s like. I imagine he’d have a big smile on his face.