Jonathan Ross is a New Jersey-born wine and hospitality professional with a career that spans all corners of the industry, and globe. After Ross’s post as Head Sommelier at Eleven Madison Park culminated with reaching the top spot on San Pellegrino’s 50 Best list, and a three-year stint as Beverage Director for the Rockpool Group in Australia, he and his wife Jane Lopes founded Legend Imports. Their seminal work How to Drink Australian has received critical acclaim on three continents and seeks to finally write a real narrative around Australian wine.


Ross keeps one foot in the hospitality world, serving as wine director for Nashville’s Twelve Thirty Club and The Global Ambassador Hotel in Phoenix.

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

I currently work across three roles – Legend Imports which I’ve co-founded, and as Wine Director at The Global Ambassador Hotel and The Twelve Thirty Club. Being an MS has had the most impact surrounding our imports business by adding a bit of currency so the nay-sayers will at least take a taste – then the wine needs to do the rest.


Where were you working when you passed?

I was in Australia when I came back to finish tasting, working as the Beverage Director for The Rockpool Group.


What advice do you give those who are pursuing certification?

For those pursuing certification, the more you invest in your community, the more it will invest in you. Tasting and study groups will only happen if you make them happen.


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

As for excitement, it’s pretty hard to top what Australia has to offer. Especially when you consider the US has only ever seen about 10% of the producers available.