Sommelier Michael Madrigale of Bar Boulud - Biography

New York, NY

April 2012

Coming from an Italian-American family that owned five butcher shops, Sommelier Michael Madrigale was no stranger to food and hospitality. The only thing missing from his early culinary life was wine. Madrigale’s parents were not wine lovers, so his interest in the subject didn’t spark until attending a house-party in New York City as a La Salle University graduate. House-parties are hardly the typical forum for education, but it was actually at this friend’s apartment that Madrigale first realized how different a Pinot Grigio was from a Chardonnay. Since then, he hasn’t been able to stop thinking about body, bouquet, and finish.

Madrigale began by selling to private collectors as a consultant at Burgundy Wine Company, and then received the unique opportunity to work at the Domaine de l’Arlot in Nuits St. Georges. After learning about terroir, he worked in sales and management for importers and distributors in the United States and lead wine tours in Beaune, France.

With a few years of business experience under his belt, it was time for Madrigale to return to his roots–delivering excellent service through fine food and drinks. He started as sommelier of Bouley and then Head Sommelier at db Bistro Moderne in 2007. He later moved to Bar Boulud, the more wine-focused sibling of Daniel Boulud’s restaurant family, managing over 500 selections, most of them dedicated to the Rhône Valley and Burgundy. He gained a following for his “Big Bottle” program, in which he opens a large-format bottle every night and serves it by the glass. Today, Madrigale manages the wine programs at Boulud Sud, Épicerie Boulud, and Bar Boulud.