Miguel de Leon is a fascinating figure in the world of wine (and zero-proof drinks, too).
A sommelier and writer, he’s been equally lauded for his curatorial work—most recently at Pinch Chinese in SoHo—and his coverage of wine through the lens of social justice and climate change. (He snagged a Michelin New York Sommelier Of The Year title and a James Beard Foundation Journalism Award just a year apart, if that gives you an idMiguel de Leonea.)
Lucky for us, he’s also a big Proxies fan—so we teamed up to create Vinta, a vibrant ode to skin-contact wines.
We caught up with Miguel for a quick Q&A about wine, hospitality, and of course, snacks.
Favorite style of wine? Skin contact! Orange, rosé, chilled red — nothing too extracted, just enough to know there's tannin and all the flavors.
Fave Proxies blend (other than Vinta)? Tough! I LOVED Chios and Basalt but also really love Zephyr!
What do you drink when you're not drinking either of those? Usually sparkling water with a homemade shrub or syrup.
What trend in wine/service do you love? Colored glassware!
What trend in wine/service do you never want to see again? Certification pins!
Who do you currently most admire in the world of food and wine? Tahiirah Habibi, founder of the Hue Society, and Jahdé Marley of By The Hand Selections.
Favorite New York restaurant/bar (other than Pinch?) The Four Horsemen.
Sweet or savory? WHY NOT BOTH
What do you like to cook/eat when you're home alone? I'm a one-pot kinda guy, so any meal that I can eat with a spoon and a bowl that fits in a pot: Chicken tortilla soup, kimchi stew, congee, chili...
Favorite childhood snack? Green mango or jicama dipped in fermented shrimp paste, or watermelon with fish sauce.
Finally: Is a hot dog a sandwich? Call it whatever you want. If you like it, who's to say you're wrong?
Feed The Philippines.
Each purchase of Vinta supports ARK (Advancement for Rural Kids), an organization that fights child hunger in the Philippines while reinvesting in local farmers. Order your Proxies Club box today.