“Everybody that works in a restaurant from a porter, to a cook, to front of the house – we should cherish them, and treat them with the dignity that they deserve.”
In this episode, we discuss with Yannick why 4:30am may be the most productive time of the day, how serving Robert DeNiro and Joe Pesci lead to a moment of meditation, and why it is essential to treat every guest who walks in the door with respect. His energy is boundless, his drive is ever-rooted, his humor is infectious, and his commitment is simply awe-inspiring. It is people like Yannick who are building bridges to a higher level of humbleness and gratitude.
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Yannick Benjamin, Head Sommelier, University Club, New York
Yannick is the Head Sommelier of The University Club, and has worked for many highly regarded restaurants throughout NYC: Le Cirque, Oceana, Jean-Georges, and Felidia, just to name a few. In 2003, a car accident left him paralyzed from the waist down. However, his passion for wine drove him to quickly adapt, outfitting his wheelchair with a table that allowed him to continue working as a sommelier. Yannick went on to create “Wine on Wheels,” which brings hundreds of esteemed sommeliers together to pour wines from around the world for the charity, and the event is now going on its eighth year. He is planning on opening his first restaurant, Contento NYC, in the spring of 2021, which will be located in East Harlem.