Wine experts and co-authors Victoria James and Lyle Railsback are joining the roster of Montana Master Chefs: New York City to curate perfect pairings and share their considerable knowledge and passion for all things wine.
At the age of 21, Victoria James became certified as a sommelier, leading to roles at some of the most prestigious restaurants in New York City, including Marea and Aureole. James was named Food & Wine’s 2018 Sommelier of the Year and included in Forbes magazine’s 30 Under 30 and Wine & Spirits’ Best New Sommeliers lists. The Back Label blog also declared her “New York’s Youngest Sommelier.” She is the author of Drink Pink: A Celebration of Rosé and the upcoming book Wine Girl. She is a cofounder of Wine Empowered, a nonprofit that aims to diversify the hospitality industry by offering free wine classes to women and minorities. Today James is the beverage director and a partner at COTE in New York City and recently received a James Beard Award nomination for Outstanding Wine Program.
Named by Wine Enthusiast as a Top 40 Under 40 Tastemaker, Lyle Railsback spent 10 years working in restaurants before coming to work with Kermit Lynch Wine Merchant in 2008. Today Railsback serves as the shop’s national portfolio manager. He manages small production wines from over 220 growers in France and Italy. Railsback is also a partner in Railsback Frères Winery in Santa Ynez, California, where he and his brother Eric make wine from Carignan, Cinsault, Grenache, Syrah and Vermentinu. Railsback lives in New York City and occasionally does artwork for wine labels, books and magazines.