Interviews 2018

Interviews 2017

  • Rex Whistler’s Wine Cellar Leaves a Fine Impression

    Besides being a world-class art museum, Tate Britain houses one of the most reputable, and best value wine cellars in London. Originally opened in 1927, the Rex Whistler Restaurant has been described as ‘The Most Amusing Room in Europe’, owing to its specially commissioned mural, The Expedition in Pursuit of Rare Meats. The cellar has been overseen for the past two decades by CEO Hamish Anderson, and Head Sommelier Gustavo Medina. The list is particularly admired for its old world...[Read More]

  • Wolfgang Kneidinger: The Man Behind the Magic at Palais Coburg Residenz

    Wolfgang Kneidinger has been overseeing the wine program at five-star Viennese hotel and fine dining venue, Palais Coburg Residenz, for the past five years. Palais Coburg’s wine list has triumphed in the awards since 2014–putting it in the running for the inaugural Champions’ League in 2017. Up ag...[Read More]

  • Entering the Awards is a Long Game, Says Momofuku Beverage Director Jake Lewis

    “Build a list with a vision and stick to it,” is the advice for entering the World’s Best Wine Lists, from Jake Lewis, Beverage Director at Momofuku restaurants. “And keep applying!” Lewis adds. One of three restaurants of the Momofuku brand all based in New York City, Momofuku Ko has gone from strength to strength over the years, and in 2017 claimed the Most Original Wine List in the World in the World’s Best Wine Lists.

    In a recent conversation with...[Read More]

  • Restaurant André: Unique Cuisine Demands a Creative Wine Menu

    Restaurant André in Singapore took the restaurant scene by storm, starting with Asia and becoming recognized globally within the year, with owner and chef André Chiang at the helm with his octaphilosophy concept menu. It has featured in the World’s 50 Best Restaurants consecutively since 2013 (#14 in 2017), alongside an ever-evolving collection of accolades including Asia’s 50 Best Restaurants and the esteemed G Restaurant Awards - The Peak Selections: Gourmet &...[Read More]

  • "Be Authentic" – Advice on an Award-Winning List from The Yeatman

    Beatriz Machado is the wine director at The Yeatman, one of Portugal’s grandest hotels located in Porto. Overlooking the Douro River and drawing on the city’s wine heritage, The Yeatman Hotel is an idealistic host for its wine-focused clientele. Beatriz takes guests on a journey through Portugal with a wine list showcasing over 1,000 wines, 97% of which are Portuguese. It is this focus, and artistically curated wine program that led to the hotel winning the Best Regional Wine List...[Read More]

  • Formento's: A Triple Threat that Excels in Food, Wine and Service

    WFW speaks to Alex Augustine, wine director of Chicago-based restaurant Formento’s, and Phil Walters, co-founder of B. Hospitality restaurant group, which launched Formento’s in January 2015, following their win in the World’s Best Wine Lists 2017.

    Priding themselves on offering an inspiring wine list, and an exemplary menu combining tradition, with contemporary presentation, all delivered with top notch service, Formento’s hits the restaurant trifecta in Chicago...[Read More]

  • Underdogs of the Wine World Finally Recognized in Wine List of the Year, says Pascaline Lepeltier

    This interview was performed prior to the announcement of Pascaline’s farewell to Rouge Tomate

    This year, the Wine List of the Year was awarded to Rouge Tomate Chelsea, a NYC-based restaurant focusing on naturally-sourced food and wine, headed up by French-born head sommelier Pascaline Lepeltier and her all-star wine team.

    The Rouge Tomate wine program claimed two category awards: Wine List of the Year and Best Long Wine List in the World – in addition to the ...[Read More]

Interviews 2016

  • Interview with Nilesh Bootun, SEA Underwater Restaurant and Wine Cellar

    Congratulations on being featured in the World of Fine Wine Awards 2016 and for receiving a three star award for three consecutive years. The awards, chaired by WOFW editor Neil Beckett, celebrate the importance of a good wine selection and are evaluated by a panel of senior judges. How does it feel to be recognized by industry insiders in this way?

    I feel very proud and also somehow accomplished by achieving such a prestigious and internationally high...[Read More]

  • Interview with Michael Sager of Sager + Wilde

    Michael Sager’s two Sager and Wilde establishments – Paradise Row and Hackney Road – are both recipients of a prestigious three star award, having them ranked as two of the top 350 wine lists in the world in 2016 – an outstanding result for a wine bar and restaurant in ...[Read More]

  • Interview with Michael Maller, Vin Rouge North Carolina
    Three star award winner – 2016

    Michael Maller, general manager and beverage director at authentic French bistro Vin Rouge in Durham, North Carolina, discusses re-designing a wine list in 30 days; daily wine tasting at Gramercy Tavern; mentoring under Andre Tamers of De Maison Selections in Spain, where he discovered an undying love for Sherry; and an unforgettable birthday in Chateau-Chalon.

    Congratulations on being featured in the World of Fine Wine Awards 2016 and for rece...[Read More]

  • Interview with Mr. Paul Lo, Robuchon au Dôme at Grand Lisboa

    The World of Fine Wine talks to Food and Beverage Director Mr. Paul Lo of the renowned Robuchon au Dôme at Grand Lisboa, this year’s recipient of the World’s Best Overall Wine List.

    Congratulations! Robuchon au Dôme has been awarded the Best Overall Wine List in the World in The World of Fine Wine World’s Best Wine Lists 2016. How does it feel to be recognised in this way?

    We are delightful for the result and we wi...[Read More]

  • Interview with Richard Healy, Rockpool Bar and Grill Sydney
    Best By-the-Glass Wine List-2016

    Richard Healy, Head Sommelier at Rockpool Bar & Grill, talks what has influenced his taste in wine, what makes his wine list stand out, and which young sommelier we should watch next.

    Congratulations! Rockpool Bar & Grill has been awarded three stars, the Best By-the-Glass Wine List in the World and the Best By-the-Glass Wine List in Australasia in the World of Fine Wine World’s Best Wine List 2016. How does it feel to be recognised in this way?...[Read More]

  • Interview with Marinela Ivanova, Beverage Manager at The World

    Luxurious yet unconventional, The World is the largest privately owned, residential yacht on earth, boasting 165 opulent residences. As well as offering a diverse range of expeditions since 2002, the lavish ship also provides a diverse exploration of the palette through its six restaurants. Winner of the Best Cruise Line/Ship Wine List award, Marinela Ivanova, Beverage Manager at The World, tells us more.

    Where does your love of wine originate ...[Read More]

  • Interview with Carlin Karr, Frasca
    Best Design/Most Original Wine List-2016

    Frasca’s Carlin Karr tells us about her love of fine wine, new trends emerging in America, how her recent trip to Austria inspired her, and what is next for herself and the Boulder-based restaurant.

    Congratulations! Frasca has been awarded three stars, the Best Design/Most Original Wine List in the World and the Best Design/Most Original Wine List in North America in the World of Fine Wine World’s Best Wine List 2016. How does it feel to be recog...[Read More]

  • Interview with Cheryl Wakerhauser, Pix Patisserie
    Best Champagne and Sparkling Wine List-2016

    Cheryl Wakerhauser from Pix Patisserie tells what being featured in The World of Fine Wine for the third year running means to her, her fundamental philosophy on food and wine, and what is next for her.

    Congratulations on being featured in the World of Fine Wine Awards 2016. The awards, chaired by WOFW editor Neil Beckett, celebrate the importance of a good wine selection and are evaluated by a panel of senior judges. How does it feel to be recogn...[Read More]

  • Interview with Andy Chabot, The Barn at Blackberry Farm
    Best Hotel Wine List-2016,Stamp of Excellence with Eleven Madison Park-2016

    The Barn at Blackberry Farm is a two-time James Beard Award Winning Restaurant, offering renowned food and wine that wanders the line between refined and rugged. Andy Chabot, Food and Beverage Director and Head Sommelier, tells us more.

    Congratulations on being featured in the World of Fine Wine Awards 2016. The awards, chaired by WOFW editor Neil Beckett, celebrate the importance of a good wine selection and are evaluated by a panel of senior ju...[Read More]

Interviews 2015

  • Interview with Raj Vaidya, Daniel

    Chef Daniel Boulud's world renowned Michelin starred restaurant boasts an elegant ambience with a delectable menu. Since joining Daniel in 2009, Head Sommelier Raj Vaidya has helped to develop the stellar wine list ensuring guests can expect the very best in the heart of Manhattan's Upper East Side.

    Where did your love of food and wine originate from?

    My love of food is hereditary, my entire family is obsessed with f...[Read More]

  • Interview with Daniel Humm, Eleven Madison Park

    Having worked in the kitchens at the age of 14, Chef Daniel Humm has earned an abundance of awards and recognition for his work. Now, as Head Chef/co-owner at Eleven Madison Park and The NoMad, he boasts three Michelin stars, six James Beard Foundation Awards, four stars from the New York Times and has been recognised by our panel as the Global Winner and winner of the Best Overall Wine List in North America. We caught up with Chef Humm who told us more.

    [Read More]

  • Interview with Cedric Nicaise, Eleven Madison Park

    “To me, eating and drinking wine are things that can’t be separate from each other; a great meal is always complimented by a bottle of great wine” Cedric Nicaise tells me over the phone from New York. With both sides of the family being huge wine enthusiasts, drink has always been an important part of Nicaise’s life. Now a member of the esteemed Michelin-starred restaurant Eleven Madison Park in New York, Nicaise ensures that the wine list is just as spectacular as the food by developing a st...[Read More]

  • Interview with Raphael Rodriguez, Fera at Claridge's

    Michelin-Starred Fera is Claridge’s take on modern British cuisine inspired by the changing seasons. While Head Chef Simon Rogan proudly uses the finest organic ingredients, Restaurant Manager and Wine Buyer Raphael Rodriguez sources some of the rarest wines, ensuring that every meal at Fera is perfectly paired. In this interview he tells us where his love of fine wine originated from, trends he is seeing in London at the moment and the secrets to his success.

    ...[Read More]

  • Interview with Jordan Salcito, Momofuku Ko

    Since opening in 2008, Momofuku Ko is arguably one of New York's most talked about eateries. Under the direction of David Chang, the tiny yet prestigious restaurant located in the East Village serves a set frequently changing multi-course tasting menu using fresh, seasonal ingredients. Beverage Director Jordan Salcito tells us more.

    Congratulations on being featured in the World of Fine Wine Awards 2015. The awards, chaired by WOFW editor Ne...[Read More]

  • Interview with Deniz Hardman, Royal Mail Restaurant

    Located within the Royal Mail Hotel, Royal Mail Restaurant serves high quality locally sourced nature-based cuisine. The vast wine collection which has been developed over the past 40 years is overseen by Head Sommelier Deniz Hardman. The wide selection and ideal storage conditions in the hotel's temperature and humidity controlled cellar sees the wine list regularly awarded internationally. Deniz Hardman tells us more.

    Congratulations on being...[Read More]

  • Interview with John Shuttleworth and Barry Scholfield, Rust en Vrede

    Often recognized as South Africa's premium wine estate, Rust en Vrede has stood peacefully among the vineyards of Stellenbosch for over 320 years and is the first to specialize in the exclusive production of red wine. The last 32 years have seen Rust en Vrede focus on Shiraz, Cabernet and Merlot, with many accolades being bestowed upon the estate. Chef John Shuttleworth and Sommelier Barry Scholfield take pride in ensuring that the experience at Rust en Vrede is one you will never...[Read More]

  • Interview with Joshua Skenes and Mark Bright, Saison

    One of San Francisco's most compelling restaurants - famous for its 22-course menu - allows guests to marvel at Chef Joshua Skenes' passion while working in the open kitchen. The wine list, carefully selected by Mark Bright, perfectly matches the cooking style. We caught up with them both to discuss their favorite wines, San Francisco's latest trends and more.

    Congratulations on being featured in the World of Fine Wine Awards 2015. The awards, ...[Read More]

  • Interview with Thomas Pastuszak, The NoMad

    Located in the heart of New York, Chef Daniel Humm and Will Guidara's The NoMad is rooted in the same traditions found at the Michelin-starred Eleven Madison Park. Its menu draws inspiration from Chef Humm's time spent in Switzerland, California and New York City, while the wine list celebrates great winegrowing from around the world with a wide selection of classic and innovative drinks. In the following interview, The NoMad's Wine Director Thomas Pastuszak discusses how he devel...[Read More]

  • Interview with Nathaniel Dorn and Victoria Kulinich, The Restaurant at Meadowood

    This three Michelin starred restaurant takes pride in celebrating the past, present and future of Napa Valley. The food and drinks reflect the clam, tranquil ambience of Meadowood, taking inspiration from the world renowned Napa Valley and beyond. Restaurant Director Nathaniel Dorn and Sommelier Victoria Kulinich answer our questions about their 1,200+ wine list and tell us what they believe makes Meadowood so special.

    Congratulations on being fe...[Read More]

  • Interview with Normand Laprise and Maxime Lavellee

    For over 20 years, Toque! has been a leader in Quebec's gastronomy, quickly becoming a landmark in the last two decades. In 2012, the restaurant launched its very first cookbook titled Toque! Les artisans d'une gastronomie Quebecoise, a 400-page book outlining the philosophy behind the business. The locally inspired menu and all encompassing wine list has seen the restaurant earn an abundance of awards, from GQ Magazine, Wine Spectator, Gourmet and Food & Wine. Grand Chef Relais &...[Read More]

  • Interview with Matthew Lamb and Rocco Esposito, Vue de Monde

    Boasting stunning city views, a delicious menu and a stellar wine list, Vue de Monde has long been recognized as one of Australia's finest dining destinations. Head Sommelier Matthew Lamb and Wine Director Rocco Esposito tells us about how their lover affair with fine wine started, what they thinks makes a good wine list, and what they expect to see in the next 5-10 years in the food and wine industry.

    Congratulations on being featured in the Wor...[Read More]

  • Interview with Paul Lo, Robuchon au Dome

    Robuchon au Dome is located within the Grand Lisboa Hotel and boasts all encompassing views of Macau. The lavish dining room is adorned with Swarovski crystal chandeliers. Equally as impressive is the wine list, boasting over 14,500 labels. Food and Beverage Director Paul Lo tells us more.

    Congratulations on being featured in the World of Fine Wine Awards 2015. The awards, chaired by WOFW editor Neil Beckett, celebrate the importance of a good wi...[Read More]

  • Interview with Mads Kleppe, Noma

    Run by world renowned chef Rene Red Redzepi, Noma is often recognized as one of the best restaurants in the world, boasting two Michelin stars. Combining the words “nordisk” and “mad”, Noma has proudly placed Denmark on the world’s gastronomic map. Mads Kleppe, the sommelier at Noma, tells us about the latest trends in Copenhagen, where his love of fine wine originated from and the secret to his success.

    Congratulations on being featured in the W...[Read More]

  • Interview with Jan Konetzki, Restaurant Gordon Ramsay

    Jan Konetzki, Head Sommelier at Restaurant Gordon Ramsay was born in Germany, where he trained as a baker, waiter and bartender before discovering his love for fine wine. He began his career in Michelin starred restaurants in his native country before moving to Switzerland and Greece. In 2009, he joined Restaurant Gordon Ramsay in London. In this interview he tells us more.

    Congratulations on being featured in the World of Fine Wine Awards 2015. The awards, chaired by WO...[Read More]

Interviews 2014

  • Interview with Raymond Blanc

    Chef Raymond Blanc’s Belmond Le Manoir aux Quat’Saisons restaurant received a three-star rating for its wine list. It now has this World’s Best Wine Lists 2014 award to go with its food credentials. Chef and owner Blanc explains the role wine plays at his Oxfordshire restaurant.

    How does it feel to be recognized for a wine list that judges have described as one of the best in the UK and the world?

    It is indeed an honor to be recognized among ...[Read More]

  • Interview with Eric Ripert

    Chef and restaurateur Eric Ripert is best known as co-owner of legendary New York seafood destination Le Bernardin.

    But it is his restaurant Blue by Eric Ripert on the paradisiacal Cayman Islands that has one of the freshest, most focused wine lists in all of South America. We spoke to him about its brand new three star status.

    Congratulations on Blue Cayman Island's wine list being given the three-star rating by The World of Fine Wine. How ...[Read More]