Hometown: Queens, NY.
Occupation: Owner and beverage director at Dell' Anima, L'Artusi, L'Apicio, and Anfora.
Favorite destinations: Italy, Croatia, Greece.
Dying to visit: Japan.
Bizarre travel rituals: I never eat airplane food. On longer trips when I'm staying in multiple hotels, I like to bring a laundry bag so I can separate dirty and clean clothes so that they don't hang out with each other in my luggage.
In-flight relaxation regime: Watch a movie, get up and stretch, movie, stretch.
Always in carry-on: Laptop, reading materials, and headphones because I think the ones they give out are uncomfortable.
Concierge or DIY? DIY.
See it all or take it easy? Usually see it all but with work being so busy, I've been moving to take it easy mode.
Drive or be driven? Drive. Unless I'm on a wine trip.
Travel hero: Bourdain, who else?
Weirdest thing seen on travels: In Berlin I saw a guy who created a sausage grill that he wore over his shoulders and never touched the ground. You'd order the sausage, and he'd grill it while standing up and walking around. I guess he does this to get around some permitting issue, but I thought it was really funny.
Best hotel amenity: A good shower.
I dream about my meal at The Nets in Santorini. It was right on Perivolos Beach, so before lunch we went for a swim in the crystal blue water overlooking the black sand beaches and dramatic cliffs. Then, still wet, we walked over to a lunch of grilled fresh local fish, Greek salad, octopus, and fava and eggplant spreads on warm crusty bread. We drank the local Assyrtiko wine, with its bright acidity, briny minerality, and freshness – the perfect pairing in this ideal setting.
Everywhere I go, I check out the farmer's markets.
When I arrive in a new place, I learn the lay of the land by taking a run. I find its the best way to see a new place and helps me orient myself.
I always bring home a bunch of condiments and wine.
I travel for the food! Really, I just love learning about new cultures and people, and learning about what they eat and drink is the way I can understand them best. (Plus its the most fun way!)