Rebecca Banks, DipWSET, Instructor
Rebecca Banks is currently the Beverage Director for Balthazar, a French Brasserie inspired restaurant in New York City. She previously managed the beverage programs for the entire Keith McNally group including, Minetta Tavern, Morandi, Lucky Strike, and Augustine up until March 2020. She has been with the group since 2005, starting out as a cellar “rat” and working up through the ranks of the beverage department. During that time, she also collaborated on the wine and training programs at Pravda, Schillers, and Pastis, as well as opened and curated the wine lists for Pulino’s, Balthazar London, and Cherche Midi.
Rebecca completed both the WSET Advanced Course in Wines & Spirits and the WSET Diploma course through studies at International Wine Center. She earned the WSET Diploma in Wines & Spirits in 2010. She has also completed the introductory course to the Court of Master Sommeliers and the FCI Fundamentals of Wine courses. She holds the Grand Diploma in Culinary Arts from the French Culinary Institute (now International Culinary Institute) in New York City where she was a James Beard Foundation 2004 Scholarship winner. She returned to teach wine classes at ICI until 2011.
Rebecca travels annually to France as well as regularly within the US to visit winemakers and learn about local wine production, trends, and challenges. She volunteers on the tasting panel at Wine and Spirits magazine. She continues to educate her staff as well as consumers and colleagues about the ever-changing and fascinating world of wine. She lives with her husband and two children in Brooklyn, NY.