What do you like to drink after a shift? “Ice-cold Budweiser.”
What is the all-time best dive bar jukebox song? “This is a tough one...“American Girl” by Tom Petty.”
Name the first good wine you ever drank and where you had it. “1985 Sassicaia. My first serious restaurant job was at a small Italian restaurant outside of Boston.”
What book on wine is your go-to resource? “There are so many great ones out there that I try to loop back to [old favorites]. Right now I’m digging back into Napa Valley Then & Now by Kelli White.”
Name the wine region that took you the longest to truly understand. “I would say Burgundy and that’s not to say that I feel as though I truly understand it. It’s such a complex region but it’s a lot of fun peeling back the layers of the onion.”
What’s your favorite wine and food pairing? “White Burgundy and lobster.”
What’s the most common wine myth you have to debunk? “Chardonnay is sweet.”
What’s your favorite bottle of wine under $20? “Jean Louis Chave Mon Coeur Côtes-du-Rhône.”
What’s your favorite bottle of wine over $1,000? “Domaine Armand Rousseau Chambertin”
What tool do you use to open a bottle? “My wine key is certainly nothing special. I go with the simple ones and just rotate them out frequently.”
Matt Whitney is the beverage director of Danny Meyer’s restaurant Manhatta.
Interview has been condensed and edited.