With a background in science from Duke University, the wine industry was not the immediately obvious career path for Hai. A first generation Vietnamese-American, wine had virtually no presence during his upbringing in Orlando, FL. It was during his time working in the restaurant industry that helped ignite his passion in the world of wine and heed a new calling. Hai has served as Sommelier of the Forbes Five Star, AAA Five Diamond Herons restaurant at The Umstead in Cary, NC from 2011 to 2016. Under his direction, Herons’ wine program has consistently received Wine Spectator’s “Best of Award of Excellence.” Before joining The Umstead, Hai served as wine director at Ãn Asian Cuisine in Cary, shaping a new wine program that complemented the rich and bold flavors of Southeast Asian cuisine. Hai is an Advanced Sommelier through the Court of Master Sommeliers, and is actively pursuing his Master Sommelier certification. A recent move has landed Hai in Philadelphia at The Rittenhouse Hotel, where he continues to explore his passion for wine. Most recently, Hai was recognized by Wine Enthusiast Magazine as one of the “Top 40 under 40 taste makers 2016."