Who We Are

Ned TowleThe Westchester Wine School is led by its founder and Director, Ned Towle. In addition to Ned, many students/friends/wine lovers contribute to the classes of the Westchester Wine School through talking about their wine experiences and knowledge, helping out, or sharing a special wine. 

Westchester wine School Class Picture
The special spirit and fun of our classes are due to our amazing students.
Proud Chavalier of the Ordre de la Dive Bouteille, Gaillac, Fr.

Ned is certified as a Sommelier by the Court of Master Sommeliers, as a Wine Educator by the Society of Wine Educators and as a Wine Judge by the American Wine Society. He has worked in the Manhattan wine retail business and in wineries in France.  Credentials aside, Ned believes that his love of wine, teaching, and being with others are among his most important qualifications.

Ned and Linda Towle having fun and working hard serving wine at the "Westchester Wine Experience" sponsored by the Pleasantville Rotary Club

Ned’s first exposure to wine came at the age of 19 when he picked grapes in southern France for a wine grower whose only means of transporting grapes…and grape pickers…was a wooden cart drawn by a donkey. More recently, he worked in many aspects of wine growing and wine making at Chateau de Mayragues in southwestern France. Ned has led wine tastings in Paris and Versailles, where the presence of his daughter and grandson, and his love of wine and French, all come together.  Ned is assisted by his wife, Linda, whose enthusiasm for people and wine creates the right balance for presentations on the richness and harmony of wine. In addition to handling various Wine School responsibilities, Linda has a private psychotherapy practice in Manhattan and Hastings on Hudson.

Ned and Robert Parker George DeBouf and Ned Towle
Ned gets to meet many of the world’s wine leaders; above with Robert Parker and George Duboeuf.

Peter Herrero and Ned
With Peter Herrero, restauranteur extraordinaire,
and owner of Sam’s of Gedney Way where
most of our classes are held.

In his former career, Ned held various positions at the MTA New York City Transit Authority, including Chief Financial Officer, Vice President of Finance and Planning, and Assistant General Manager of Bus Operations.  A degree in divinity from Union Theological Seminary in 2003 nurtured his natural calling to the world of wine.

Check out these short videos:
See Ned become a French Chevalier

Ned interviewed by Westfair Media's Caryn McBride
Read a 2009 profile in Westchester Magazine
Read the 2014 profile in the Wall Street Journal