It started with a motorcycle. Keith wanted one; his mother suggested employment. Perhaps only in Napa – his hometown – could a busboy gig turn into waiting tables at Domaine Chandon and afterhours wine tastings with Robert Mondavi. Wholly enchanted, Keith became America’s 47th Master Sommelier, the youngest to pass all three parts – theory, tasting and practical – on the first go, winning him the coveted Krug Cup trophy. He’s made sake in Japan, judged wine competitions in China and opened wine bars in India. Still Keith loves to work the floor, finding guests the perfect wine for food from celebrity chefs like Bryan Voltaggio at Range and former White House chef Frank Ruta at Rosewood.
Keith likens his approach to wine to his Mormon upbringing – everyone gets a direct line to above – and will use even unconventional means to connect people with wine. This playful attitude – plus his dream of creating the World Series of Blind Wine Tasting – makes Keith perfect for WineGame. And he’s a natural teacher, instructing and examining students for the Court of Master Sommeliers, CIA (Culinary Institute of America), COPIA and the Korean Wine Academy. He’s currently spending millions realizing Landry’s goal of creating America’s finest wine cellar in their new Houston, Texas, hotel.
Keith’s wine game strategy? Go with your gut. And his motorcycle?
It’s a Triumph.