Not Bottled Up: Ali Coyle’s Life As Musician and As Sommelier At Family’s Restaurants

Photograph by Emily J. Davis


What’s your role in the family business?
I’m the wine director for Dublin 4 Gastropub, Wineworks 4 Everyone, and Fable & Spirit. Regardless of my music career, I’ll always be part of my family’s business. My dad and I feel the same way about supporting each other’s dreams. We have the same type of passion—that is, sleepless.

How did your interest in music begin?
I played the violin throughout elementary school, but it wasn’t until I picked up the guitar at age 12 that I began writing music. When I was 20, I was the lead singer of an indie rock band called This Time With Feeling that really took off. We were offered an indie record deal. After five years, we broke up; I was devastated.

What did you do?
I somehow became a bass player for different bands and lived in L.A. in an artist warehouse, which is literally a warehouse that people are not really supposed to be living in. I was living a double life, studying to become a sommelier and commuting down here. Three years ago, I moved back to O.C. and found a great arts community here.

You’re about to release your first solo album. What can we expect?
It’s called “Songs for My Therapist,” and it’s super confessional. It’s about love and heartbreak and trying to find myself. I didn’t know which path to take, and I had an existential crisis. I started seeing a therapist and found it was easier to explain what I was feeling by writing songs. I hope my music can get the message across that getting help is not a weak thing to do.

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