We're back with a new tasting episode! This week, host and Master Sommelier Christopher Tanghe discusses blind tasting practices with MS Steven McDonald and Rachael Liggett-Draper. They explore their tasting challenges, how they have calibrated acid and tannin calls, and the ways they apply blind tasting skills in their everyday work.
Steven McDonald is the executive wine director for the Pappas Bros Steakhouses in Houston and Dallas. He moved to Houston from New York City in 2011 to join the Pappas Bros team. Steven passed the Master Sommelier exam in 2018. Rachael Liggett-Draper has worked as a sommelier at The Little Nell in Aspen since 2021; previously, she worked at several restaurants and wine bars in Vail. Rachael is an Advanced Sommelier with the Court of Master Sommeliers, Americas.
After their tasting conversations, Steven and Rachael taste the same red wine. Listen closely and guess along with them! We reveal the wine at the end of the episode.
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Master Sommelier Steven McDonald is the executive wine director for the Pappas Bros Steakhouses in Houston and Dallas, overseeing three Wine Spectator Grand Award-winning restaurants. He has worked for Pappas Bros since 2011. Previously, he worked in New York City at Ai Fiori, CLO wine bar, and Tribeca Grill. Steven helped establish the Houston Sommelier Association and is a regular guest speaker at Oklahoma State University's Wine Forum.
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Learn more about Pappas Bros.
Rachael began her career in the wine industry working as a host at an upscale bowling alley in Vail with a deep wine cellar. Over the next nine years, she worked at many notable restaurants and bars in Vail while studying wine, achieving the Advanced Sommelier certification through the Court of Master Sommeliers, Americas. Rachael moved to Aspen in 2021 to work at The Little Nell. She is currently working toward the Master Sommelier certification.
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I loved the show. Thank you so much for all the fun. I was thinking as a possible region Valle d'Aosta but didn't think of Etna at all.