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About the Santé Awards

The Santé Hospitality Awards is the only peer-to-peer awards program where industry professionals
honor their colleagues for being the best in their field.

Industry professionals first nominate their colleagues, then the entire Santé audience votes for their favorites.

Award winners are announced via social media and here, on 

2019 March Award: Outstanding Women in Hospitality.

Winners are:

Outstanding female mixologist

Julie Reiner

Julie was not only one of the first woman to make a major impact and contribution to the wonderful resurgence in cocktails and mixology we are enjoying today as a bartender, but she has also gone on to be one of the most successful bar owners in America. Her contributions, not only to the craft and profession are equaled only by her commitment to giving back through her philanthropic efforts. She has trained and developed a new generation of bar professionals and continues to be a role model for many established and up and coming bartenders!


Outstanding female sommelier

Rebecca Banks

(on the right)

In addition to being a true professional (and Wine Director for all of the Keith McNally restaurants, not just Balthazar), Rebecca is one of the nicest, most genuine people I have ever met in the wine world. It is a pleasure to know her, and to do business with her.


Outstanding female restaurateur

Rena Frost

I have known Rena since 1993, we met when I first started as her wine rep. In the 26 years that I've known her she has gone from working for the restaurant to owning it. I've seen her work long hours and make some tremendous changes in the restaurant. She is not only talented as a Chef but also a great businesswoman. She's one of the most creative women I know in the restaurant business, I've seen it and tasted it firsthand.
Rena is also one of the most charitable women I know. I've seen her participate in everything from large Food & Wine festivals to local fundraisers for the Women's Shelter, the Symphony, Make A Wish and more. She gives back to her community ten fold and doesn't boast about her involvement.
When she bought out the original owner she made immediate changes not only to the menu (showing her influence more) but also in the way that business is conducted. She always tells me that she wants to be known as a fair and respectful boss. I think she does that because I know that she is loved and respected by all who work with her and not just the managers but all the employees.
Rena is also about uplifting women in business. She has several friends that own restaurants and other businesses, she is always available for them if advice is needed. She doesn't see this as competition just helping another female succeed.
I think she is what you are looking for in today's environment. She's been thru the hard times and now is a great example of a woman making it in an industry once dominated by men. 


Outstanding female chef

Sherry Pocknett

Sherry Pocknett is an amazing chef locally famous in the New England area!  What sets her aside from the rest and makes her worthy of this award is her love and passion for cooking indigenous Native American cuisine. She is a master in farm to table seasonal native food. She is currently opening a restaurant in Connecticut while still catering for private and corporate events. Sherry is known for working with a lot of Ivy League colleges as well as the Foxwoods and Mohegan Sun casinos. Her amazing cooking and passion for what she does is why I believe she deserves this. See this article.



Each winner receives a Harvest Card membership ($349 value). Members get:

Complimentary tasting for card member and guest
10% off bottle purchases at participating wineries (three bottle minimum)
Special Rates at select Sonoma County Hotels
Complimentary corkage at exclusive partner restaurants
Preferred Rates to events, tastings, and offerings


Sponsored by:


See previous winners at the

Santé Hall of Fame

The Santé Awards were originally created in 1998 to recognize and honor restaurateurs for excellence in wine and spirits management and general hospitality.



Frequently Asked Questions

1. Who can nominate for a Santé Award?

Anyone can nominate someone for a Santé award. Third party agents, such as public relations professionals, can also apply on behalf of their clients. We reserve the right to verify all nominations and to decide whether to issue an award.

2. How many different awards can a restaurateur be nominated for?

You may be nominated for as many awards as may apply. 

3. How do I apply?

All Santé Award nominations are through 

4. How do award winners receive recognition?

All Santé Award winners are listed on the Awards page of and are given recognition through editorial coverage and on social media. Award winners receive official badges that they may use on the websites or on social media.

5. Is there a physical award?
Yes. We have decals, certificates and plaques. Award winners will be offered an appropriate customized award.

6. Is there an application fee?

No. We believe that awards should be given based on merit.