I’ll Drink to That: Wine Director Marika Vida-Arnold

Episode 412 of I’ll Drink to That! was released recently, and it features Marika Vida-Arnold, who is the Wine Director of the Ritz-Carlton Central Park in New York City. Marika also has her own consulting business, called Vida et Fils.

Marika Vida-Arnold doesn’t apologize for not being more ambitious about her career. She decided when her first child was born that family would come first, and she made choices about her work goals with that in the forefront of her mind. Over the same period of time, as her kids got older, the restaurant sommelier world got more youthful, more competitive, more driven, and often, less lucrative. Marika, confronted with that reality, found a way to carve out her own niche among New York City sommeliers. She didn’t follow a cycle of long hours on the floor that would take her away from her kids, but instead found a solution that still involved buying for a restaurant, but framed by her larger life goals. In that way her career represents an exception to the rule, but also one that is replicable and achievable by others looking to put family first within their own wine career. Marika shares her tips and straightforward advice for doing so in this interview. Parents who want to work in wine, but not in winery sales, may find that what Marika has to say speaks directly to them. Other listeners may learn something about the luxury hotel business, or the challenges of wine consulting, that they can draw on for their own careers.

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I’ll Drink to That is the world’s most listened-to wine podcast, hosted by Levi Dalton. Levi has had a long career working as a sommelier in some of the most distinguished and acclaimed dining rooms in America. He has served wine to guests of Restaurant Daniel, Masa, and Alto, all in Manhattan. Levi has also contributed articles on wine themes to publications such as The Art of Eating, Wine & Spirits magazine, Bon Appetit online, and Eater NY. Check out his pictures on Instagram and follow him on Twitter: @leviopenswine