Rising Star Sommelier Eliza Christen of Lilia - Biography

Brooklyn, NY

November 2020

Born and raised in Taipei, Eliza Christen wanted the quintessential American college experience at the University of Illinois, but it was the restaurant world that truly engaged her. She got her introduction to restaurants working the omelette station at the go-to continental breakfast place in town. She then started at Bacaro wine bar, where she made her way through every front-of-house position. The experience introduced her to the wine world, as well as gave her time off to work harvest seasons in Italy, Australia and Oregon and study for her CMS and WSET certifications.

In 2016, Christen moved to New York City, where she scored a position as a server, then sommelier at Momofuku Ko. The wide range of the New York wine market cemented her passion, but after several years, she longed to revisit the wine-making experience.

After working another harvest and traveling throughout Europe, Christen settled in Napa at Meadowood Resort. In 2018, Restaurateur Sean Feeney of Grovehouse, who remembered Christen from a past dinner at Ko, offered her a job as beverage director of Missy Robbins’ celebrated Williamsburg Italian restaurants, Lilia and Misi. Christen now curates the respected all-Italian wine menu of Lilia and the more adventurous, globe-spanning Misi list.