Owner, Arnaud Tronche.
A native of L’Isle –sur-la-Sorge, southwest of Avignon, Arnaud Tronche received an engineering degree in Paris where he began a fifteen-year career in the Telecom industry. Although he grew up near the major wine-producing regions of the Southern Rhone, Mr. Tronche’s life turned toward wine only upon his arrival in Chicago where he began a second career as a sommelier. While touring vineyards, primarily in France and Corsica, Arnaud was strongly influenced by visits with growers such as Emmanuel Reynaud, Thierry Allemand, Antoine Arena and Matthieu Baudry. In 2009, Mr. Tronche began working on his dream – a restaurant that would combine fine dining and attentive service with the energy and atmosphere of a wine bar: Racines NY!
Managing Partner/Sommelier, Pascaline Lepeltier, MS
Detouring from a master’s in philosophy and a career as a university teacher, Pascaline Lepeltier began her obsession with wine at the two star Michelin-rated L’Auberge Bretonne under celebrated Chef Jacques Thorel. Within a year, Pascaline was named both Best Loire Valley Young Sommelier and Best Brittany Sommelier. While working as Beverage Director at Rouge Tomate in Brussels, she interned at the George V in Paris under the direction of Best European Sommelier and Best World Sommelier runner-up Eric Beaumard. Promoted to the position of Beverage Director for the Rouge Tomate flagship in New York, she moved to Manhattan in 2009. Within months, she was named one of the five best new US sommeliers of 2011 by Wine & Spirits, one of the “New Wine Prophets” by Time Out NY, one of the “40 under 40” beverage influencers by Wine Enthusiast and called the “Natural Wine Evangelist” by Ray Isle in Food & Wine. The NY Times awarded her Rouge Tomate wine list as one of the best in NYC in 2013, and The World of Fine Wine awarded it “Best Long Wine List in the World 2017” and “Wine List of the Year 2017.”
Executive Chef-in-Residence, Paul Liebrandt (Beginning April 24)
As a teenager growing up in London, England, Chef Liebrandt cooked for some the world’s most esteemed restaurants and chefs including Marco Pierre White at his Michelin three-star restaurant, Raymond Blanc at Le Manor Aux Quat’ Saisons in Oxford, and Jean-Georges Vongerichten at the London outpost of Vong. He traces his turning point from cook to chef to a life-changing year he spent working under the brilliant Pierre Gagnaire at his eponymous three- star restaurant in Paris, France. Following that experience, Liebrandt moved to New York City in 1999, where he worked briefly for David Bouley, at Bouley Bakery. In 2000, Liebrandt first became a chef in his own right at Atlas restaurant on Central Park South. In November of that year, at the age of 24, he earned the distinction of youngest chef ever awarded three stars by the New York Times: critic William Grimes praised his “daring, distinctive style,” likening him to “a pianist who seems to have found a couple of dozen extra keys.” After leaving Atlas, Liebrandt cooked at Papillon, then for numerous high profile clients including Lord Rothschild and HRH Prince Andrew. He opened his first restaurant Corton in 2008. Corton was awarded two Michelin stars in its angular year and was nominated as Best New Restaurant in the United States by the James Beard Foundation, also winning best new restaurant in the USA by Esquire magazine.In 2013 Liebrandt opened his second restaurant The Elm in Brooklyn, which after six weeks of being open was voted best new restaurant in the USA in Esquire magazine’s industry pantheon, its Best New Restaurants list.