Santosh Varghese ’13, Wine Specialist and Marketing & Public Relations Manager at Zachys Wine Auctions

Degree: Wine and Beverage Program Major: Culinary Arts Campus: Hyde Park, NY Santosh Varghese ’13, Wine Specialist and Marketing & Public Relations Manager at Zachys Wine Auctions, had a successful career in international banking with Deutsche Bank in London and New York, yet something didn’t feel quite right. "My job wasn’t fulfilling," says Santosh. "I kept going back to my love of food, … [Read more...]

Amy Racine ’11, Sommelier, Sons & Daughters, Sweet Woodruff, and The Square

Amy Racine ’11 always knew she would return to the San Francisco Bay area. The vibrant culinary and enological culture of the city is a constant source of inspiration for the culinarian turned sommelier. Amy’s time spent at The Culinary Institute of America at Greystone in the Accelerated Wine and Beverage Program (AWBP) was the beginning of a career that’s all about professional growth. Now … [Read more...]

James Tidwell ’98, Master Sommelier at Four Seasons Resort and Club

Imagine having to describe and identify six wines, including grape type, country, region of origin, vintage, and quality level, within 25 minutes. This is only one part of the challenge facing those who wish to sit for the Master Sommelier diploma examination. The practical and theory portions are equally difficult. In the service practical, seasoned Master Sommeliers role-play guests in a … [Read more...]

Bijou Robertson ’02, Co-owner of Zhoo Zhoo Wines

When Stephen Robertson ’72, owner of Hells Canyon Winery in Idaho, told his daughter Bijou "making wine is all about being able to taste, and to really taste you have to learn to cook," she took his words to heart. She arrived at the CIA armed with a desire to learn all she could about food and wine. She attended Michael Weiss's and Steven Kolpan's wine classes simultaneously so as to not miss any … [Read more...]

Eddie Ledesma ’05, RAVEN Wine Management Systems, LLC

Degree: Bachelor of Culinary Arts Management Major: Culinary Arts Campus: Hyde Park, NY Like many CIA freshmen, Eddie Ledesma arrived on campus with aspirations of becoming an executive chef. But after returning from externship, he discovered his true passion. "The restaurant classes, the wines course, the bachelor's courses...they all really helped foster a love for the front of the … [Read more...]