Featured Sommelier William Rhodes of The Carlyle Hotel, New York City
By Jim Clarke
William E. Rhodes has over nine years of experience as a sommelier at some of the most prestigious restaurants and retail shops in Manhattan, including over two years at Thomas Kellerís Per Se where, under the direction of Chef Thomas Keller and Corporate Sommelier Paul Roberts, he honed his ability to perfectly pair wine selections with an ever-changing, seasonal menu.
Rhodes planned to study internal medicine, but switched routes mid-way, earning a degree from Farleigh Dickinson University School of Hotel and Restaurant Management, and never looking back. He began his career as the senior sommelier at City Hall Restaurant, later working with Michael McCarty at Michaelís and spending two years under the guidance of Keller and Roberts at Per Se.
Post-Per Se, Rhodes worked at Mario Bataliís Italian Wine Merchants, and opened the upscale wine shop Cellar 72 with Guy Goldstein. He then moved a few blocks over to The Carlyle, where he has amazed a list of favorites from Germany, Austria and Alsace, expanding the cellar from 500 to over 1,000. Rhodes recently collaborated with Carlos Salazar, director of food and beverage at The Carlyle, to introduce the Carlyleís first private-label wine, a 2004 Syrah designed for the hotel by Clos Mimi, a producer of limited production Syrah.
In 2005, Rhodes was certified through the Society of Wine Educators as a Certified Wine Educator (C.W.E.), is currently finishing the Court of Master Sommelierís exam and has successfully completed the Advanced Certificate and Diploma Studies with the Institute of Masters of Wine.