Sarasota, FL, United States
Sarasota, FL, United States
I aspire to further contribute and elevate the level of excellence in hospitality, the resurgence of the cocktail and further strengthen the sense of the community through the emotional connection we experience in the food and beverage occurrence. I entered into the food and beverage family while pursuing my first degree in Marketing and Advertising at Middle Tennessee State University in 1998. In 2003 I became the director of Marketing for a major hospitality group and entertainment venue in Dallas, Texas. With a desire to reinvigorate my creative talents I then attended The Art Institute of Dallas in pursuit of a Masters in Architecture. While studying architecture I then stepped back behind the bar in 2009 for flexibility of schedule. It was then what I had known from my years of bartending and hospitality, transformed and took on a new meaning. . In 2009, Dallas began to evolve and embrace the revival of the art of the cocktail and the craft of the bartender. Hailing with more restaurants per capita than any other major metropolitan city, it was a very exciting time for me to witness and be a part of the conscious and rapid growth amongst so many talented professionals in the culinary and cocktail ecosystem. I made a deliberate choice to resign from Art school and volume bartending to truly immerse myself in the resurgence and mastery of the craft, and hospitality as a whole. It was I then began to understand this was my true creative passion and design. My goals are to continue to innovate upon the existing creative structures while implementing standards of practice, elevating the guest experience, identifying new benchmarks, continuation of growth and expansion of community presence, and adding value in events for a cause all while celebrating the cocktail as we alter the way we approach and enjoy the imbibing and culinary experience. I am very active in my peer groups with the United States Bartenders Guild Associations both in the Tampa and Dallas Chapters. I have ran the beverage program at the Ritz Carlton for two years, and launched the wine and cocktail program at Element, listed as the Beverage Manager and Wine Director. Recently, I stepped away to focus on a business I founded with my partner, Nick Vaccaro, Patches&Pins Consulting and Events. I hope to leave my footprint and contributions in the southeast market of how we view the art of libations and proprioception as well as sensory integral experiences; reminding us to pause, enjoy our company and embrace the gift of communication and connection whether it be through the journey a cocktail takes you on from beginning to end, or the many opportunities we have to engage with so many different human beings, creating unforgettable and life changing experiences.