At my local Costco, an “ambassador” has a small table set up with 6 or 10 wines displayed, and is willing to talk about them. No samples (our local wine stores do provide samples, so it’s probably not a legal thing). The smbassador doesn’t seem to offer much expertise on wine.
Who are these people, who pays them, and do they offer any benefit to the customer? Do they have a vested interest in the wines they are promoting on a particular day?
I have too seen them only occasionally and because they weren’t offering samples, I didn’t pay much attention.
I’m not sure what their role is or if they are being paid. It might be similar to some of the other products where reps of the products are allowed to set up a table and present their product or service. The blender people come to mind.
But maybe someone can chime in with more knowledge.
Many larger companies that usually own several brands hire such “ambassadors” to travel around to shops and events. Mega Champagne producers typically do this, although quite a few Cognac makers and wineries hire people, too. Often, these representatives hold a Master of Wine or Master Sommelier certification.
On the other hand, wholesalers also call whoever is standing at their wines’ table “ambassadors.” Like the term “natural,” there seems to be no real meaning.