Overseeing the wine programs at Chef Michael Mina’s 30+ restaurants across the United States and Dubai, Jeremy Shanker serves as MINA Group’s Corporate Wine Director. One of the youngest Master Sommeliers in the world, Shanker passed the Master Sommelier exam in September 2019.


Jeremy began his career in New York, and eventually found his way to work under Laura Maniec MS. Upon moving to California, and under the mentorship of Renowned Sommelier & Winemaker Rajat Parr, Shanker joined MINA Group in 2015 as a sommelier at San Francisco’s revolutionary, Burgundy-themed restaurant RN74. From there, he rose through the ranks while simultaneously and fastidiously completing his sommelier examinations – and eventually stepped into helm Chef Mina’s Michelin-starred flagship restaurant MICHAEL MINA San Francisco in 2017.


Shanker earned a Bachelor of Science in Food Studies & Nutrition at New York University before dedicating his life to his craft. He’s spent over a decade mastering all aspects of wine service, wine and food pairings, and wine storage, in addition to fostering relationships with some of the world’s most talented wine professionals and wineries across the globe. In his role as Corporate Wine Director, he oversees the constant development of wine programs at all current outlets, as well as in new openings and concepts of the growing Group. Additionally, Shanker also oversees and leads each MINA sommelier, ensuring continuity across all restaurant wine programs, while continuing to curate valuable relationships with the industry’s top wineries in order to provide guests with first rate service and selection.


Where are you working currently and how has being a MS supported you in your current role?

I am currently the Wine Director for MINA Group. Attaining the MS instilled in me not just the wine theory knowledge required for my role, but of equal importance, the work ethic and business acumen necessary.


Where were you working when you passed?

I was the Head Sommelier at Michael Mina San Francisco when I passed


What made you want to become an MS?

The desire to master my craft and learn to operate at the highest level possible in my field


What advice do you give those who are pursuing certification?

In studying for the exam, focus on what is most important. Don’t get buried in minutiae. Find a good mentor. Drink great* wines that motivate and inspire your, and remind you why you are studying so hard.


What is your desert island wine, or what wines/beverages are you currently excited about?

If I’m on a desert island, I probably want something crisp and refreshing– a favorite would be one of the single village bottlings from Domaine Sigalas. If I can’t find that on the island thouhg, I would be perfectly content with some Hubert Lamy Saint-Aubin.