The SOMM Journal

June / July 2018

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74 { THE SOMM JOURNAL } JUNE/JULY 2018 { q & a } FOR NEARLY A DECADE, Matthew George has been honing his craft in Sin City. George currently serves as the restaurant sommelier for internationally re - nowned chef Alain Ducasse's Rivea, which opened in 2015 at Delano Las Vegas. Master Sommelier Joseph Phillips recently spoke with George about his experiences running the program at the French- and Italian-influenced establishment. Joseph Phillips: You've lived in Las Vegas for most of your life. Give us a quick road map of how you ended up in your current position. Matthew George: Prior to accepting a position at Rivea, I was a sommelier for Mina Group and worked at STRIPSTEAK at Mandalay Bay and SEABLUE, formerly located at MGM Grand. Growing up in Las Vegas, I began working on the Strip straight out of high school. Over the last 20 years, I gained experience in a variety of "front-of- house" positions, which provided invaluable insight into the hospitality industry. The restaurant features cuisine inspired by the French and Italian Riviera. How has that influenced the wine list? When Rivea first opened, Ducasse Corporate Wine Director Guillem Ker - ambrun created a section called "Riviera Soul," which features grape varieties found near the French and Italian Riviera. These offerings include Vermentino (aka Pigato, Rolle, and Favorita), Mourvèdre and rosé. In Las Vegas, we cater to guests coming from all over the world, so we tried to create a worldly list that offers something for everyone. These grapes and regions aren't exactly mainstream in Las Vegas. Do you find the need to do a lot of training for your staff? Yes, I regularly work with our staff to educate them on wine. We constantly Master Sommelier Joseph Phillips, Director of Wine Education and Trade Development for Southern Glazer's Wine & Spirits of Nevada, Interviews Matthew George, Sommelier at Rivea in the Delano Las Vegas Joe Phillips, MS, and Matt George at Rivea in the Delano Las Vegas. Q: Q: Q:

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