The Tasting Panel magazine

October 2011

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Page 126 of 128

Tylor Field III T VP Wine & Spirits, Morton's ylor Field practically grew up with Morton's, or at least the national steakhouse restaurant grew up with him. From his fi rst foray in Boston in 1990, when only six locations existed to the tap on the shoulder in 1999 that brought him from Operations to Beverage Operations with a 35-restaurant base, Field was the man to watch over the ever-expanding beverage program that would become increasingly more signifi cant. There are now 77 locations nationwide. "As we grew, the wine, beer and spirits programs became a bigger piece of the fi nancial picture and someone needed to nurture and guide it," Field, who is now in his 21st year with the company, tells THE TASTING PANEL. Working out of his home in South Florida, Field is out in the fi eld 90 percent of the time. "Besides the executive meetings at our Chicago headquarters, I travel to our many restaurants for train- ing, openings, marketing events, wine dinners and to lead Master Classes for our guests." Tylor Field III. Offering his VIP customers wine fl ights is not simply a three-ounce pour of several themed varietals. In this case, it's a literal fl ight to tour wine country, accompanied by himself and members of his team, including his corporate Beverage Systems Manager Sara Fasalino. "Sara is a Certifi ed Sommelier and helps me in all aspects of our beverage program," Field says. A Fi rst Level member of the Court of Master Sommeliers, Field is also one of eight people in the world to have received the Distinguished Service Award from The Court of Master Sommeliers Educational Foundation for these kinds of innovation and educational programs. "Our core value is to serve only the fi nest products from our prime steaks to sides of asparagus and button mushrooms," Field notes. "This carries right over to the wines, spirits and beers that we carry. Our hospitality is genuine and with our yes mentality we are more like concierges than restaurant workers." Field has hand- selected a national core group of 12 people who form the Morton's Sommelier Team. "They are my ears to the ground for what our guests are craving. It is also impor- tant to note that every Morton's in our company has a manager who has passed the First Level test with the Court. This is a prerequisite for the job. We know the needs and wants of our special guests and the knowledge to blow them away. It's not unusual to get a hug from one of our maître d's or somms." 126 / the tasting panel / october 201 1 THE 2 LIST Tylor Field's Top Five Faves 1 The only wine that made me cry: A 1986 Romanee Conti Domaine de La Tache. Restaurants that have a large wine-by-the-glass program so you can sample (we have 30, including sparkling). 3 4 5 Morton's New York steak with a side of creamed spinach. My recent trip to South Africa: the raw nature was spellbinding. Family wineries: a couple of my recent favorites are Daou Vineyards: I love what they are doing in Paso Robles and Ladera Vineyards Cabernet Sauvignon from Napa Valley. Tylor's Five Pet Peeves 1 2 Canned service. This is the opposite of being present, real, professional, honest and happy. Bartenders who don't introduce themselves and warmly welcome their guests. Instead it's, "What'll you have?" 3 Walking in a restaurant and the fi rst question, as the host or hostess looks down at their computer, is "Do you have a reservation?" 4 5 Being in restaurant prison: It feels like you're doing time waiting for the check. Pretensious or unqualifi ed sommeliers. Our series continues, thanks to Funkin fresh fruit purées, a brand that supports the integrity of the Food and Beverage people in our industry. " 5 " PHOTO: TOM CLARK Taking Inventory with. . .

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