Slow Food NYC Snail of Approval. Chambers Street Wines has been selected as one of the first recipients of the Slow Food NYC Snail of Approval, for our contributions to the quality, authenticity and sustainability of the food we eat and the beverages we drink in the city of New York.
David received his wine education schlepping cases for 15 years at Garnet Wines, one of NY’s leading discount shops on the Upper East Side. As a buyer and manager he was able to develop his interest in French wines, especially those of the Loire, Rhône and Languedoc-Roussillon. His two previous careers, growing apples in Vermont for 4 years and with a jazz orchestra for 15 years, left him with a fanatical dedication to good, inexpensive wine. His heroes in the wine business are Mark Ollivier, Catherine Roussel and François Pinon, to name just a few. David's wife first introduced him to Loire Valley wines back in 1977, and they have three quite grown children, Georgia, Eben and Julia. He would like to thank Eben, who was part of Chambers Street in the beginning and whose hard work and good cheer helped us through the months after 9/11.David Lillie's Reccommendations
I grew up drinking French wine, but had a real epiphany with a bottle of Robert Chevillon's 1985 Nuits Chaignots. Eight years of owning a house in the central Loire Valley (in Touraine, near Cheverny), gave me a chance to get to know both the region and the feeling of living with wine, and also gave me the confidence to propose forming a partnership with M. Loire himself, David Lillie. Before meeting David, I spent five years in the salt mines of Christie's Wine Department - a somewhat thankless job made fabulous by the incredible range of mature wine, mostly Bordeaux, that I tasted on the job. My subsequent discovery of the natural affinity between Burgundy and Piedmont has produced a serious Nebbiolo problem, though Riesling, Gruner Veltliner, and Chablis will usually make me sit up and take notice. There's so much good wine in this store that it's getting hard to choose.
Sophie worked in kitchens throughout her college career in Chapel Hill, North Carolina. At her third restaurant, she took an active role in wine evaluation and became curious about wine and its crucial role at the table. After leaving the restaurant world, Sophie began selling wine at A Southern Season, one of the southeast’s leading retailers specializing in old world wine. As her passion developed, she began to dream of relocation to New York and immersion in the rich food and wine culture of the metropolis and she eventually effectuated the move. After a year as the assistant wine buyer at Astor Wines and Spirits, Sophie was offered an opportunity to become part of Chambers Street, a store that she had, for years, admired from afar. In addition to a deep love of Cru Beaujolais, Sophie has a particular fondness for wines of the Jura and the Languedoc and has spent time in both regions.
After working as a chef and then a baker in Rhode Island, she joined the Pier House Hotel as Sommeliere and then became the manager of the Cafe at Louie's Backyard, both in Key West, Florida. She has represented the Lenz, Palmer and Paumanok wineries in North Fork, Long Island. In 1997, she received the Wine & Spirit Education Trust Diploma from the International Wine Center where she has also taught the class "Aromas of Wine". She is currently teaching the Wine & Spirit Education Trust: Intermediate, Advanced Certificates and Diploma classes. Candela is also the Professor of Wine Instruction for the Hospitality Department at the New York School of Technology. She is a Certified Wine Educator from Society of Wine Educators, Washington, DC. In Key West, Florida she is the Wine Educator for Louie's Backyard Restaurant, she teaches wine classes at the Restaurant Store, and writes a seasonal wine column for Solares Hil. At Chambers Street Wines she selects the Spanish and Portuguese wines and she is available to conduct corporate, public and private wine events.
Chris is a graduate from the French Culinary Institute's Classic Culinary Arts and Essentials of Restaurant Management programs and has always had a passion for food and wine. He started working in kitchens at the age of 16 working his way up from washing pots to cooking in seasonally inspired Italian and California cuisine restaurants in California, Oregon, Washington, and recently here at NY Times 2 Star, August Restaurant in the West Village. In 2001, Chris took a sabbatical from cooking finding that he had a talent for selling coffee and tea and producing artisanal coffee drinks for industry leading coffee companies in Chicago and New York, most recently with Joe the Art of Coffee in the West Village. This love for tasting and selling artisanal products led him to working behind a charcuterie counter at a wine store, cheesemongering and beer buying for Whole Foods Market, and now working in his current position in sales here at Chambers Street Wines.Chris Barnes's Reccommendations
My professional wine education began in the early eighties as the sommelier at Chez Maria, a French Vietnamese restaurant in Georgetown. It was one of the very first wine bars in the country, and its proprietor, Roger Grison, taught me about regional French wine and Indochinese food. After that experience, I was hooked. Many wine bars and retail outlets later I find myself here at Chambers Street Wines. I am an enthusiastic amateur chef who strives to achieve harmony between food and wine. Every year I travel to different vineyards to taste. There is one place I consider my home away from home: Burgundy, one of the most terroir driven of all wine regions. Wine is an immense subject and a matter of personal taste. It's an endless debate with no absolute answers, a truly delicious and invigorating intellectual and gustatory challenge everyday.John Beaver Truax's Reccommendations
John offers, “When I first took a job at Chambers Street Wines over three years ago, I had no idea that I would still be here now. I first applied as a stock and delivery worker in the back room. Before long I was completely entranced with the world of natural wine. Finding wines like Stephane Guion's Bourgueil for $10.99 showed me that wine could be honest, delicious, and not only affordable to well-to-do bankers. From there I was hooked on the fresh and complex flavors of natural wines of the Loire.” It did not take long to amass a library of books, branching out to Beaujolais, the Mosel, Piedmont, Sicily, Burgundy, and the Rhone, and before long, John was hooked. John also buys all of the spirits, and assists in purchasing for other areas of the store. In January of 2010 John had the opportunity to travel to the Loire Valley and Beaujolais with the wonderful people of LDM Imports, and then in 2011 and 2012 has visited many of Italy’s most famous regions. A growing obsession with spirits has even led him to the far-flung islands of Jura and Islay to visit some of the world’s greatest distilleries.John Rankin's Reccommendations
Originally hailing from the San Francisco Bay area, John (appropriately named among the four Johns working at CSW) wasn't bitten by the wine bug until moving far from Northern California and its world-famous, wine-producing counties. After time spent studying music in sunny Los Angeles and chilly Rochester, NY, he moved to the city to pursue a career in music but found wine retail to be much more profitable and stable (as well as an industry that isn't involved in a long-term implosion). After exploring low-end retail, high-end retail, really high-end auction houses and other various wine niches, he has found a suitable home at Chambers Street. Here his geekier inclinations and passions for both wine and music are not only tolerated but actually encouraged, and he couldn't be happier. He continues to play saxophone around town as much as he can and loves his wife very much. John is also the buyer for the German and Austrian sections at Chambers Street Wines.John Ritchie's Reccommendations
Following lengthy stints in academic libraries and freelance web development, Stephanie’s culinary inclinations rose to the fore after chance exposure to single-estate chocolate in Cambridge, MA. She subsequently spent several years working as a chocolate buyer in Chapel Hill, NC while honing her tempering and emulsifying chops; though her tempestuous affair with chocolate eventually led to separation, her unwillingness to sever ties with terroir led to a natural transition into the wine industry. She worked at Astor Wines & Spirits for two years as Rare & Artisanal Wine Consultant. She currently helps to source old vintages for Chamber Street Wines and has become the wizard behind everything tech. She continues to experiment with macarons and confiserie in her Brooklyn kitchen.