Raising the Bar: Elevating Chicago's Fine Dining Service Industry

A Baltimore, Maryland native, Alexander Carlin studied English and Art History and began his career working for a publishing house that focused on the manuscripts of prison writers, their stories, and publishing their works during incarceration and on the road to rehabilitation.

While the job was rewarding, the economy and its pressures shut the publishing house down not long after he started. At a crossroads, Alexander recalled his passion for exquisite food and the elegance of wine during his extensive travels in Europe and decided to pursue his certification from the Court of Master Sommelier’s. This represented the turning point for finding his calling in the hospitality industry and his love of service.

Since then, he has helmed posts for acclaimed wine programs including Michael Mina, Daniel Boulud, Jean Georges, and Mario Batali. Alexander holds certifications from the Court of Master Sommelier’s, the Wine & Spirit Education Trust, and the United States Bartender’s Guild. He is also currently pursuing his Master Diploma.

Over the past decade, he has cultivated his high-end restaurant and fine dining expertise all over the country - Baltimore, Washington D.C., Napa Valley, Chicago, and New York City. He has practiced his craft in various styles of restaurants including Michelin 3-star fine dining French cuisine, rustic Italian, noveau American, elegant Indian, and fine dining steakhouse - with a series of acclaimed restaurant openings under his belt. In 2016, he landed in Cleveland as a consultant for the city's exploding food and wine scene eventually landing at a non-profit that taught formerly incarcerated individuals the art of fine dining French cooking and service.

Alexander has since relocated to Chicago to open a wine bar. He aspires to assist the local community and its restaurant culture, host engaging private wine tastings, and support the local service industry on its quest to becoming the best in the world. Alexander will continue elevating local dining culture to Michelin-starred levels while imparting the charm offered from the Chicago landscape in an approachable and humble manner. Pairing these together, he believes, will further the mission in Chicago and launch the city into the zeitgeist of the global food & wine industry.

And he plans to help make that happen. 

* A complete resume of experiences, accomplishments, references, and certifications is available upon request