Sommelier charged for NYC arson attacks, including rival restaurants

A one-time “sommelier of the yr” was apparently far too obsessive about fiery reds — getting charged this week in connection to a trio of Manhattan arson assaults, authorities stated.

Caleb Ganzer — the 35-year-old managing partner of La Compagnie des Vins Surnaturels on Centre Avenue — was first busted after he was caught beginning a fireplace to Prince Avenue Pizza’s out of doors eating shed in Nolita within the early hours of July 13, FDNY Hearth Marshals stated.

Surveillance footage exhibits a shorts-wearing man casually utilizing a lighter to begin a small blaze in a single nook, doing the identical to the opposite finish of the out of doors space as he strolls off.

Pictures confirmed the construction was badly charred by the blaze.

After a “thorough investigation” and arrest of Ganzer — who has labored at a few of Manhattan’s most unique eating places — investigators tied him to 2 different decrease Manhattan assaults that “match the identical sample,” the marshalls stated.

The primary was from late on Jan. 8 to a different out of doors eating construction, this time to Forsythia Restaurant on Stanton Avenue within the Decrease East Aspect, near the place Ganzer seems to reside.

Gazer's mugshot.
Caleb Ganzer lit up a rival restauraunt.

Proprietor Jacob Siwak told The New York Times that somebody had tried to mild a fireplace no less than 4 instances over 9 days that month — saying it price $3,500 to restore the shed after each ends burned down utterly.

One sparked flames no less than two tales excessive that threatened to unfold to the restaurant and even the remainder of the constructing, he stated.

Siwak advised the paper he “was anticipating it to be a man that flicked a cigarette butt within the trash or a homeless man attempting to maintain heat.”

As a substitute, his safety cameras confirmed a nattily dressed man who had even unpacked kindling from his backpack to begin fires.

Investigators additionally tied Ganzer to a trash fireplace on the nook of Broome and Centre Streets, near his personal institution.

 Ganzer — who was “Food & Wine” magazine’s “sommelier of the year” in 2017 — was hit with a slew of prices.

They included two counts of third-degree arson, two counts of third-degree felony mischief and three counts of second-degree reckless endangerment, the FDNY stated. The case shall be prosecuted by the Manhattan District Legal professional’s Workplace.

Caleb Ganzer former 2017 Food & Wine magazine sommelier of the year and a partner at wine bar La Compagnie des Vins Surnaturels on Centre Street, was arrested and charged with allegedly setting these fires.
Caleb Ganzer’s arson work left three eating places charred.
Prince Street Pizza's outdoor eating venue was lit aflame.
Prince Avenue Pizza’s out of doors consuming venue was lit aflame.

“Each act of arson has the potential to unfold quickly, endangering the lives of New Yorkers and FDNY members,” Hearth Commissioner Daniel Nigro stated. “Fortunately in these incidents there have been no accidents and the suspect has been apprehended earlier than one other fireplace may very well be set.”

Ganzer was not instantly accessible for remark, and his social media appeared to have been switched to non-public settings since his arrest.

“We as the corporate are conscious of the incident, and Mr. Ganzer is on a go away of absence,” La Compagnie des Vins Surnaturels advised the Instances, refusing to remark additional.

Initially from Illinois, Ganzer lived for a time in Paris earlier than settling in New York a few dozen years in the past, in keeping with a 2017 article in The Daily Journal to mark his “Meals and Wine” honor.

“New York’s change into dwelling,” he advised the paper on the time.

Nevertheless, in a latest interview with Sommelier Enterprise, he complained concerning the “form of existentially crippling” strain of the COVID-19 pandemic.

A bio on Great Sommeliers famous that he has labored at a number of eating places owned by the chef Daniel Boulud, together with Daniel and DBGB.

The positioning additionally encompasses a video of him utilizing a blow torch to arrange port wine whereas he was the sommelier at Eleven Madison Park .

With a giant smile, he says, “That is essentially the most dramatic side of it — it’s the hearth.” | Sommelier charged for NYC arson assaults, together with rival eating places

Huynh Nguyen

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