Keeper Collection #SommChat Guest #Sommelier Raj Vaidya

2/1 Sommelier Raj Vaidya


@Loca_Linda (Loca Linda): Looking forward to Q&As with @rajvine today on #ww’s #SommChat! Who else?

@Sassodoro (Sassodoro): @keepercoll I will have to pop in and out, but I’ll join you for as much as I can. Cheers and Happy #WW! #SommChat

@drooln (Nathan Yap): Looking forward to #SommChat happening in 9 minutes

@jennanorth (Jenna North): @keepercoll Looking forward to #SommChat today w/ @rajvine at 11 AM CST #WW #NYC #wine cc @DANIEL_E65thNYC

@LeRivageHotel (Le Rivage Hotel): This is our first #SommChat — looking forward to learning from the vino lovers!

@keepercoll (Keeper Collection): Welcome to #SommChat everyone! Tell your friends to join us to learn from Sommelier Raj Vaidya of @DANIEL_E65thNYC!

@keepercoll (Keeper Collection): We’d like to introduce you to Raj Vaidya, Sommelier at @DANIEL_E65thNYC #SommChat

@keepercoll (Keeper Collection): We’re about ready to dive in w/questions, so shout out to Raj to say hello & so he knows you’re here! #WineWednesday #SommChat

@keepercoll (Keeper Collection): Don’t forget that EVERY tweet during this chat should include the #SommChat hashtag in order for everyone to see it! #SommChat

@keepercoll (Keeper Collection): As we ask @Rajvine our Qs, you can ask Raj your Qs as well! He’ll do his best to answer all Qs in the order they come #SommChat

@keepercoll (Keeper Collection): Let’s start talking #wine with @Rajvine #WineWednesday #SommChat

@rajvine (raj vine): .@keepercoll very excited to be here, hi to all the wine lovers out there! #SommChat

@keepercoll (Keeper Collection): Q. @rajvine How did you end up at @daniel_e65thnyc? Was it always a goal of yours or did it just happen? #WineWednesday #SommChat

@rajvine (raj vine): A. @keepercoll I have long been in love with the restaurant so it was a natural choice once I heard they were looking for someone #SommChat

@rajvine (raj vine): A. @keepercoll I had been working at Cru downtown and had met Daniel Johnnes a few times, so I contacted him and was at Daniel #SommChat

@rajvine (raj vine): A. @keepercoll a few months later. Got alot of support from @robertbohr and @danieljohnnes #SommChat

@keepercoll (Keeper Collection): Q. @rajvine As head #sommelier of @daniel_e65thnyc, what are your top 3 tips for making a great #wine list? #WineWednesday #SommChat

@rajvine (raj vine): A. @keepercoll First in importance is having a coherent list with something for everyone #SommChat

@rajvine (raj vine): A. @keepercoll this doesn’t mean you need wine from everywhere, rather at least 1 wine to fit any palate or taste #SommChat

@rajvine (raj vine): A. @keepercoll Lastly is to have personality! Very important and often overlooked #SommChat

@rajvine (raj vine): A. @keepercoll It is not hard to have a list that touches on many different wines and styles, but if it doesn’t have an individual character or personality, it will be boring and dull #SommChat

@rajvine (raj vine): A. @keepercoll in the age where anyone can learn facts about wine via the web it is vital to have some passion behind the choices #SommChat

@WineTheory (Justin Harriman): @rajvine #SommChat challenges in pairing. What would you pair with asparagus and what red would you pair with smoked salmon? @keepercoll

@rajvine (raj vine): .@WineTheory @keepercoll Asparagus is tough, I use Gruners and sylvaners generally. Beaujolais is great with Salmon. #SommChat

@WineTheory (Justin Harriman): How did you become a Cert Somm? #SommChat @rajvine @keepercoll #ww

@rajvine (raj vine): .@WineTheory @keepercoll I actually don’t have a certification, learned what i needed by working the floor and tasting constantly! #SommChat

@ctfoodandwine (CT Food & Wine): @rajvine @keepercoll what is the most popular Gin brand currently? Have u tried/heard of @bulldoggin ? #SommChat

@rajvine (raj vine): .@ctfoodandwine @keepercoll Bulldog is great! Hendricks is a favorite for cocktails, though I am partial to old raj naturally #SommChat

@raelinn_wine (Raelinn Doty): @rajvine nice! Hendricks is a personal fave also! Cheers! thanks for doing #SommChat

@WineTheory (Justin Harriman): @rajvine It’s like trying to pick your favorite pet but do you have a favorite region or name your top 3. @keepercoll #SommChat

@rajvine (raj vine): .@WineTheory @keepercoll favorite regions are the Ruwer, Burgundy and Rhone, but it hurts to leave out the Mosel and Champagne… #SommChat

@scottota (Scott Ota): @rajvine, What a menu you have to pair wines. What rules must you follow to pair wine with your cuisine? #SommChat

@rajvine(raj vine): .@scottota @keepercoll I pair wine based on matching structural elements like acid, body and tannins 1st #SommChat

@tattoodsomm (Eric Hastings): @rajvine what are some of your go to grapes to get people out of their comfort zone? @keepercoll #SommChat

@rajvine (raj vine): .@tattoodsomm @keepercoll more regionally based than on variety, but Riesling and Gamay and Cab Franc work most of the time. #SommChat

@demilove (Douglas Trapasso): @keepercoll – Did “working the floor” and engaging gracefully with all types of customers always come naturally to you? #SommChat

@rajvine (raj vine): .@demilove @keepercoll I am still working on being graceful! I learned the craft, it was tougher in the beginning for sure. #SommChat

@WineTheory (Justin Harriman): When you do your inventory what music do you listen to if any? #SommChat (sorta) @rajvine @keepercoll

@rajvine (raj vine): .@WineTheory @keepercoll we do it in teams of 2 with 1 person counting and another entering so music gets to be distracting. #SommChat

@scottota (Scott Ota): @rajvine, Great selection of Champagne on your wine list at Daniel. So, why #FarmerFizz? And how do you sell it to guests? #SommChat #WW

@rajvine (raj vine): .@scottota @keepercoll RM (farmer) fizz offers a great quality to price ratio. #SommChat

@rajvine (raj vine): .@scottota @keepercoll and I introduce them typically by talking about the individuals who make the wine, and pouring them BTG #SommChat

@adriennebyard (Adrienne Byard): @keepercoll @Rajvine You have a 6oz flask that you want to sneak into the movie theatre – what’s in it? #SommChat

@rajvine (raj vine): .@adriennebyard @keepercoll 6 oz of Riesling of course! #SommChat

@keepercoll (Keeper Collection): Q. @rajvine You once worked in a company importing #wines- can you tell us more about it? Was it a positive experience for u? #SommChat

@rajvine (raj vine): A. @keepercoll It was a company that I started which was intended to break into the Indian wine market #SommChat #SommChat

@rajvine (raj vine): A. @keepercoll This proved very difficult as the import duty in India is very high and there is little infrastructure for the biz #SommChat

@rajvine (raj vine): A. @keepercoll things like temp controlled storage and delivery are basically unheard off #SommChat

@rajvine (raj vine): A. @keepercoll I learned a great deal, and reconnected with my hometown of Bombay, so it was a positive experience #SommChat

@rajvine (raj vine): A. @keepercoll but definitely tough. I have also helped some small time importers sell wine in NYC, also a challenge #SommChat

@keepercoll (Keeper Collection): Q. @rajvine How was working for Cru? How did it affect your career working w/ such a HUGE variety of #wines there? #WineWednesday #SommChat

@rajvine (raj vine): A. @keepercoll Cru was one of the great experiences in my life. I learned an immense amount about Burgundy #SommChat

@rajvine (raj vine): A. @keepercoll this helped me to settle into my role at Daniel and curate the program we now have in place there #SommChat

@rajvine (raj vine): A. @keepercoll The friendships I have forged while there are today some of my most important relationships #SommChat

@rajvine (raj vine): A. @keepercoll I learned so much about grace, consideration, generosity and Romanee Conti from @roywelland #SommChat

@rajvine (raj vine): A. @keepercoll About everything wine and specifically Burgundy and Piedmont from @robertbohr #SommChat

@rajvine (raj vine): A. @keepercoll also Michel Couvreaux, simply the best sommelier I have ever worked the floor with #SommChat

@rajvine (raj vine): A. @keepercoll To @nedbenedict for teaching me how to avoid thirst, + that the restaurant biz is the best way to taste it all #SommChat

@rajvine (raj vine): A. @keepercoll and to the sense of humor, however foul, of @JohnSlover #SommChat

@MattMcGinnis (Matt McGinnis): Q. @rajvine are there any Indian wines that you have exported to other markets? If so, what are the varietals? #SommChat

@rajvine (raj vine): .@MattMcGinnis @keepercoll I do not export any wines out of India but Sauvignon Blanc, Chenin and Cabernet/Syrah are popular there #SommChat

@StephanieMiskew (Stephanie Miskew): @rajvine Will you be doing another Sommelier All-Star Dinner at Daniel? That was a fabulous event! @keepercoll #SommChat #WineWednesday

@rajvine (raj vine): .@StephanieMiskew @keepercoll that was so much fun! working on making it an annual event #SommChat

@ctfoodandwine (CT Food & Wine): @rajvine @keepercoll Your favorite wine shop in #NYC? Downtown? #SommChat #WW

@rajvine (raj vine): .@ctfoodandwine @keepercoll the very best are Crush and Chambers St (downtown). special love for oak and steel #SommChat

@Levi_opens_wine (Levi Dalton): .@rajvine Did you really give Paul L. ALL of the lemon verbena? #SommChat

@rajvine (raj vine): .@Levi_opens_wine @keepercoll it was lemon balm, and yes on the second try:) #SommChat

@WineTheory (Justin Harriman): @rajvine how many bottles real last count? Not bottles on the list. #SommChat @keepercoll

@rajvine (raj vine): .@WineTheory @keepercoll 14500 inventory, 1230 or so consignment. eyes still bleary from monday… #SommChat

@drooln (Nathan Yap): @rajvine what do you feel is the most rewarding thing about your role as a Somm? #SommChat

@rajvine (raj vine): .@drooln @keepercoll I get to be there when the bottle is drunk. real pleasure and real responsibility! #SommChat

@keepercoll (Keeper Collection): Q. @rajvine What’s the hardest part about the #wine business as a #sommelier? The easiest/best part? #WineWednesday #SommChat

@rajvine (raj vine): A. @keepercoll hardest part is the hours, long and grinding that make living healthy difficult #SommChat

@rajvine (raj vine): A. @keepercoll easiest/best is reward of tasting great wine and sharing it with people #SommChat

@awanderingwino (Shawn Burgert): @rajvine #SommChat Namiste! are there cultural wine cultural distinctions from India & what are they?

@rajvine (raj vine): .@awanderingwino @keepercoll wine is still looking for its place on the dinner table in India. Indians drink first, then eat #SommChat

@awanderingwino (Shawn Burgert): @rajvine #SommChat do you have a “well” of go to wines?

@rajvine (raj vine): .@awanderingwino @keepercoll I do, mostly the classic regions I love from Germany, France and Italy. #SommChat

@ENOontheMagMile (ENO): @rajvine @keepercoll Q- Favorite or most interesting city for drinking? #SommChat

@rajvine (raj vine): .@ENOontheMagMile @keepercoll hard to beat NY, but there is a cellar in Hattenheim in the Rheingau which is amazing named Krug #SommChat

@Loca_Linda (Loca Linda): @rajvine Q. What do you think is the most versatile #wine? And how do you as a #sommelier pick which wines to sample? #ww #SommChat

@rajvine (raj vine): .@Loca_Linda @keepercoll I think Riesling, Chardonnay and Pinot Noir are the most versatile varieties. I try and taste it all #SommChat

@rajvine (raj vine): .@Loca_Linda @keepercoll however I can’t taste non-stop so I rely on others in the biz who I can trust for recommendations. #SommChat

@WineTheory (Justin Harriman): @rajvine Do you count every Monday or just on the first of the month? #RestaurantLife #SommChat @keepercoll

@rajvine (raj vine): .@WineTheory @keepercoll once a month, otherwise I would have been committed a long time ago. not the most fun part of the job #SommChat

@MattMcGinnis (Matt McGinnis): Q. @rajvine have you had any new wine discoveries? New vintner, new line? #SommChat #WW

@rajvine (raj vine): .@MattMcGinnis @keepercoll favorites in the last few months are Abbatucci, Ollieux Romanis and rediscovering Tissot. Google em! #SommChat

@rajvine (raj vine): .@MattMcGinnis @keepercoll favorites in the last few months are Abbatucci, Ollieux Romanis and rediscovering Tissot. Google em! #SommChat

@awanderingwino (Shawn Burgert): .@rajvine @Loca_Linda @keepercoll is it the ph/acid that brings the versatility of those wines? #SommChat

@ENOontheMagMile (ENO): @keepercoll @rajvine Everyone has their niche bottle for guests, sometimes lower cost but more interesting wine. What’s yours? #SommChat

@rajvine (raj vine): .@ENOontheMagMile @keepercoll Triennes Cab/Syrah from S. France, simple but delicious from the hands of a Burg master #SommChat

@awanderingwino (Shawn Burgert): .@rajvine are there regions in CA you like for #pinotnoir? #SommChat

@rajvine (raj vine): .@awanderingwino @keepercoll Sonoma Coast, Russian River, Anderson Valley my favorites #SommChat

@mikemadrigale (Michael Madrigale): .@keepercoll @rajvine Q: Can you transfer some Von Schubert to me? #SommChat

@rajvine (raj vine): .@mikemadrigale @keepercoll absolutely not. no chance. #SommChat

@adriennebyard (Adrienne Byard): @keepercoll @rajvine What was the last glass you drank and what musician or group would you liken the experience to #SommChat

@rajvine (raj vine): .@adriennebyard @keepercoll had a glass of 09 Roulot Bourgogne Aligote last night. It reminds me of both Bowie and Slick Rick, odd #SommChat

@snottysomm (Laura DePasquale): Great to see so much vibrancy on #SommChat…been too long since I’ve been on. Thx @KeeperColl Gotta run… #SommChat

@DeniseFraser (Denise Clarke): Finally on #SommChat. Better late than never. What will Raj drink tonight?

@rajvine (raj vine): .@DeniseFraser @keepercoll Thursday is Chartreuse night in the West Village. #SommChat

@mmWine (Matthew S Horbund): @rajvine @keepercoll what % of customers bring bottle and how do you set corkage #SommChat

@rajvine (raj vine): .@mmWine @keepercoll We don’t permit corkage at Daniel. But we have a lot to choose from. #SommChat

@mmWine (Matthew S Horbund): @rajvine @keepercoll not uncommon but how is that decision of no corkage arrived at? #SommChat and do you think it has impact on guests?

@rajvine (raj vine): .@mmWine @keepercoll impacts guests as they have to buy wine! Arrived at because we’re in the wine biz, staying in biz needs $$ #SommChat

@drewhendricksms (Drew Hendricks): Just arrived in Viennes with @winejames @JuneRodil @C_McFall @dbrogues #SommChat

@ENOontheMagMile (ENO): @rajvine @keepercoll Q- Any wines from up & coming regions in US outside OR, WA, & CA? #SommChat

@rajvine (raj vine): .@ENOontheMagMile @keepercoll recently tasted some nice offerings from Fingerlakes and LI. Mauii makes pineapple wine, I’ll skip. #SommChat

@vtwinemedia (Todd Trzaskos): @rajvine @keepercoll #SommChat Chilean wines on your list that you like?

@rajvine (raj vine): .@vtwinemedia @keepercoll I like everything on my list for one reason or another… #SommChat

@keepercoll (Keeper Collection): Q. @rajvine If you had to pick, what #food and #wine pairing would you recommend for a romantic #ValentinesDay meal? #SommChat

@rajvine (raj vine): A. @keepercoll Champagne is always the answer when the question is Romance #SommChat

@rajvine (raj vine): A. @keepercoll though off dry Scheurebe is a good choice, has a strangely “romantic” effect on people… #SommChat

@Loca_Linda (Loca Linda): @rajvine Q- Is there a person you admire most within the wine industry? Or another #sommelier? #SommChat

@rajvine (raj vine): .@Loca_Linda @keepercoll too many to name, but lots of admiration for all the great talent in my own group (DJ, MM, AL, BP, KOB) #SommChat

@rajvine (raj vine): .@Loca_Linda @keepercoll of course @robertbohr one of my mentors! #SommChat

@rajvine (raj vine): .@Loca_Linda @keepercoll and my own staff, rockstars EB, JM and FM #SommChat

@keepercoll (Keeper Collection): Q. @rajvine We know you are a BIG #Chablis fan- in your opinion, what sets this #wine apart from all the rest? #WineWednesday #SommChat

@rajvine (raj vine): A. @keepercoll Chablis is one of the most versatile wines when it comes to pairing with food, but is also extremely pleasurable #SommChat

@rajvine (raj vine): A. @keepercoll The purity of the mineral character really speaks to me, and even when barrels are in use in the wines #SommChat

@keepercoll (Keeper Collection): Time to wrap up! Hope you enjoyed this hour of #wine chat with Raj Vaidya @Rajvine #WineWednesday #SommChat

@keepercoll (Keeper Collection): It was great to have Raj join us today for #SommChat. We hope everyone learned as much as we did! #WineWednesday #SommChat

@keepercoll (Keeper Collection): Please join us in thanking Raj for his time #SommChat

@keepercoll (Keeper Collection): If any1 missed some of the chat today, remember we’ll post an archive soon to for you to review later #SommChat

@keepercoll (Keeper Collection): Mark your calendar for #SommChat next Wed 2/8 at 11 AM CST Winemaker @BenFlajnik to answer your questions! #SommChat

@ATXFoodnews (Kay Marley-Dilworth): Signed on at last two minutes of #SommChat and now reading timeline so I can catch up on wine tips. Thx for doing this each week @keepercoll

@keepercoll (Keeper Collection): If u want to be 100% sure ur #SommChat Q for @BenFlajnik gets answered, post it to FB! Happy #WW! #SommChat

@keepercoll (Keeper Collection): Please join us in thanking Raj for his time #SommChat #SommChat

@keepercoll (Keeper Collection): Keep in the loop for upcoming guests & archives & sign up for our email list at #SommChat

@ENOontheMagMile (ENO): @rajvine @keepercoll Thank you for your time today! #SommChat

@StephanieMiskew (Stephanie Miskew): @keepercoll @rajvine Thanks for a fabulous #SommChat, Raj! Very informative:) #WineWednesday

@MattMcGinnis (Matt McGinnis): Great #SommChat. Thanks @rajvine and @KeeperColl! Happy #WineWednesday