Meet The Team


Founder - Philip Dunne

Beginning his hospitality career early in life, Founder and Head of Education at Vinspire Wine and Spirit Academy Philip Dunne is one of Irelands most awarded sommelier and wine & spirit experts in the luxury hospitality sector in Ireland. 

Previously Head Sommelier in Ashford Castle in Mayo, Head Sommelier of The Westbury in Dublin, & currently the Global Group Sommelier of The Doyle Collection, Philip has a vast level of experience in wine list design, and expert result-driven wine and spirit education. 

Philip has been twice awarded Ireland's 'Sommelier of the Year' by the Sunday Business Post (2018 & 2019), and also in 2018 became an accredited educator for WSET (Wine Spirit Education Trust). In June 2023, Philip was the winner of the Champagne Academy, a competiton between 16 of the UK and Irelands leading wine professionals in a series of tasting and written exams in Champagne.

Since becoming a WSET Educator, Philip has educated and delivered these wine and spirit qualifications to over 3,000 students in Ireland, the UK, and across the USA.

Philip has set up Vinspire to offer Restaurants, Bars, Hotels and drink enthusiasts in Ireland specialist wine and spirit education, and award qualifications through WSET. These qualifications assist employers with increased staff knowledge, confidence in selling, and improvement of staff retention - as well as being a benefit in offering an education incentive at the recruitment stage of staff. 


Senior Wine Educator - Mine Bennett

Originally from Istanbul, Mine studied Hospitality for 2 years before continuing her studies on Classical Philology in Istanbul University.

Since 2001, Mine has been living in Belfast and has gained vast experience in leading wine establishments over the past 20 years.

Throughout her hospitality career, she has spent time working for Michael Deane managing Deanes Deli and the Vin Cafe, and then running the wine bar Ox Cave for the One-Michelin starred Ox restaurant.

In 2017 Mine achieved a personal milestone when she went to Portugal on a scholarship from Laithwaites and worked in Quinta Dos Murcas based in Douro further enhancing her studies on winemaking. When she returned, she began to work for leading wine retailer and importer Direct Wine Shipments, working with their lead clients offering guided tastings & staff trainings. During her WSET Diploma studies, she continued her love and passion for hospitality by working in the highly regarded Noble Restaurant in Holywood, Northern Ireland.

Mine is a WSET Diploma holder and also a certified teacher for Level 1, 2 and 3 wine courses. She achieved her first WSET teaching qualifications back in 2018 together with Philip.

Mine holds regular private wine tastings for corporate or private companies, as well as offering her own monthly wine tastings in venues of Belfast.

She is also an expert at Yoga! Having been regularly practising yoga for the last 10 years, at the end of 2022 she took her yoga teacher training course with Studio 52 Function and Flow Yoga from some of the most valuable teachers from all of Ireland. Mine also runs classes that incorporate both wine and yoga together... Keep an eye on her Instagram @minebennett for more information!

One of Mine's key mottos in life is: "I believe if you stop in life, don’t improve yourself you start to get rusty and old, I am a keen supporter of ‘learning’ all the time and also I think if you share the knowledge within you, you learn better.. so its all about sharing and improving"