It’s true, we have been crushing on sommelier Pascaline Lepeltier since we first heard about what she was doing at the original Rouge Tomate, and now that’s she back at the Chelsea location, we were excited to chat with her. A Master Sommelier with too many awards to name, Lepeltier grew up in the Loire which certainly explains her predisposition towards all things grape.
As a partner at Rouge Tomate, Lepeltier oversees an over 1,000-bottle wine list; we wanted to find out more about this total #girlboss.
Drinking With Pascaline Lepeltier
State your name + title + where you work + where you live for the record.
Pascaline Lepeltier, Beverage Director and Partner at Rouge Tomate Chelsea. I live in Harlem.
How did you get started in the biz? What was your first hospitality job?
I started late, after studying philosophy. I had a summer job at a catering company to make a little money, and I loved it. I went on to do a Master in Hospitality Management and got more and more into wines, so I went for a specialized diploma to become a sommelier. My first job as a sommelier was in a 2 Michelin Stars restaurant in Brittany called l’Auberge Bretonne.
What is your current go-to drink order?
Sour Beer, or a great glass of Loire Chenin
Do you drink coffee or tea? Any favorite local spots to mention, how do you drink it and how many times a day/week?
I drink both – I love the teas of Tea Dealers, you can find them at 1 or 8 in Brooklyn. Coffee, I am a big fan of George Howell for my lighter aromatic coffee, and Intelligentsia for their single origins, especially the Geisha.
What are your favorite bars in NYC?
Classic: Pegu Club – It was a critical place for me when I arrived in NY, and I admire the work of Audrey Saunders greatly. I also like all the places created by Sasha Petraske – and the Krystof Zizka and Joshua Boissy at Sauvage and Maison Premiere. For the newcomers Bar Goto and Mace.
Best places to go on an expense account: In NYC, the Modern in the dining room, Brooklyn Fare – fantastic food, exceptional service, and for the Modern also the list with great gems.
Hidden gem/hole in the wall: Racines, fantastic restaurant, still too much under the Radar.
Where do you take out-of-towners for an “Only in NYC” cocktail experience?
PDT & Attaboy – so unique and so great!
Special shout to any bartenders or drinks makers out there that you think deserve some special love?
My bartender, Cristian Molina ;) – he needs to be less under the radar because he is incredibly talented! Also, Michael Klein at Cafe Flora and Estela; Arnaud Tronche at Racines, an awesome sommelier; Severine Perru at Ten Bells for all her work on natural wines and Stefen Ramirez at 1 or 8 for his tea program
Spill it. Shameless Plug what are you working on right now?
I am finishing a book with Alice Feiring on dirt, a way to learn about wines through soil types – it will be called “The Dirty Guide to Wine.” It will be out in early Summer. It is my first collaboration, and I am excited about this!! It should be a very cool, approachable.