2017 New York City Rising Star Sommelier Daniel Beedle of Indian Accent

2017 New York City Rising Star Sommelier Daniel Beedle of Indian Accent
January 2017

Indian Accent
123 W 56th St
New York, NY 10019

Daniel Beedle began his career in hospitality at LeVelle Vineyard in Elmira, Oregon, where he found his true calling in wine through scraping fermentation tanks. Grape-stained and eager to learn, Beedle decamped for New York, where he met and hit it off  with Sommelier Morgan Harris at Th e Tangled Vine. The two began their studies through the Court of Master Sommeliers, and Beedle gained formative experience at a few of the city’s best known wine destinations. He served as a sommelier at The NoMad before taking over as wine director at Michelin-starred Betony and then Juni. During his tenure at Juni, Beedle was named one of Wine Enthusiast’s 2014 “40 Under 40: America’s Tastemakers” for championing off beat pours. He also earned the restaurant Wine Spectator’s “Award of Excellence” for its wine program.

Today, Advanced Sommelier Beedle holds court as beverage director at Chef Manish Mehrotra’s Indian Accent, the North American iteration of San Pellegrino’s “9th Best Restaurant in Asia.” Taking on that role in 2015 marked Beedle’s first foray into Indian cuisine. To prepare for Mehrotra’s contemporary Indian dishes, Beedle studied the vast culinary history of India. His research and experience from previous roles manifested in a carefully curated list of wines and craft cocktails that celebrate Indian cuisine’s complex spice pantry. For his work in partnership with Mehrotra, Indian Accent received two stars from The New York Times in 2016, and Beedle was awarded a 2017 StarChefs New York Rising Star Sommelier award. 

Interview with New York City Rising Star Daniel Beedle of Indian Accent

D. J. Costantino: What’s your philosophy on wine pairing?
Daniel Beedle:
I look at the history of the dish and the wine, how they go together in context. I love having context. Food is cerebral, and I like tying history into pairings. I like finding different temperatures and weights andpairing things you wouldn’t normally find.

DC: What’s your most important pairing rule?
No rules. It’s not math or physics. Whatever tastes best has always worked for me.

DC: What was the biggest challenge in taking the job at Indian Accent?
Indian food was completely different. It’s been around for 4,000 years without alcohol, and the cuisine took different shapes without alcohol. Fat and yogurts counter the spice and tannins, for example. I like looking at modern trends, like racy, dry, high acid wines. With ancient cuisine, you need historical perspective, and breaking into that is challenging. 

DC: What resources do you use?
My strength is in history, and I have a degree in biochemistry from the University of Oregon. History shows us why we have the wines that we have today. I have over 700 books at home, and if I’m not sitting for the Masters, I’ll spend that money to buy books on Amazon. 

DC: What do you keep in your cellar at home?
I don’t have a big cellar, but I do have a collection of Serpico magnums from Campania at home.

DC: What’s your approach to the wine list at the restaurant?
I have to make sure everyone gets what they want. We have the biggest by-the-glass selection of Madeira in New York City. Every meal begins with a Madeira. When I started, I never thought I’d sell a drop of Madeira, but now we sell anywhere from 15 to 17 glasses a night.

DC: What’s your current favorite wine region?: 

DC: What’s the most overrated varietal?
I love them all. It’s really the winemakers who make wines overrated relative to their value. 

DC: And the most underrated varietal: 

DC: What wine region would you most like to visit?