A Perfect Glass of Wine, Every Time
With Firstleaf: WineMatch™, Personalization Expertise Now Empowers Both Patrons & Restaurants
Firstleaf, America’s most-personalized DTC wine company, is now poised to revolutionize on-premise wine selection at restaurants—an often confusing and expensive scenario. Introducing Firstleaf: WineMatch™. This pioneering solution assists restaurant-goers in choosing wines that align with their unique taste preferences and perfectly complements their meals.
In this in the Mix promotional interview, Firstleaf CEO & Founder Philip James shares insights on how Firstleaf’s patented technology will make ordering the perfect wine when dining out easier than ever for diners. He also underscored how the turn-key service will be a boon to restaurants, simplifying and elevating servers’ work by providing a virtual sommelier for each table.
Philip, how does Firstleaf: WineMatch work and how would restaurant-goers access it?
The concept behind WineMatch is simple, really. The restaurant will provide menus and table cards featuring a Firstleaf: WineMatch QR code. Upon scanning the code using their mobile phones, patrons will be directed to a screen offering two choices. The first option invites them to take a 30-second version of our exclusive quiz, which quickly generates a personalized wine profile tailored to their tastes. The profile includes recommendations for wines available at the restaurant that match their preferences. Alternately, diners can select the entree they intend to order, prompting WineMatch to suggest the ideal wine for that particular dish.
WineMatch totally enhances the dining experience for our wine-loving customers,” said Deborah Hinson, President of Roy’s. “In a very simple and easy to understand format, our diners have access to Firstleaf’s latest technology that can not only choose a wine that’s ideally suited to their taste preference, but can also pair a perfect wine to their meal. This is a revolutionary win-win for Roy’s and its valued customers.”
How will Firstleaf: WineMatch enhance the diner’s experience, while also benefiting the restaurant that offers it?
In certain restaurants, there may be young or inexperienced wait staff who don’t have extensive wine knowledge. After all, it’s not always feasible to train an entire staff to become wine experts. Firstleaf: WineMatch bridges this gap by providing every table and patron with their own personal wine sommelier. This not only enhances the overall customer experience, but also significantly reduces the chance of patrons returning wines due to taste preferences or poor pairing with their entree. Also, by enhancing the enjoyment of patrons’ wine choices, it results in increased customer spending as they order more, and assists those who struggle to articulate their wine preferences or feel uneasy discussing wine to confidently make their selections. As a result, WineMatch helps provide a better overall customer experience, and ideally repeat business.
How is this technology different from what Firstleaf uses to select wine for its customers?
Firstleaf: WineMatch uses the same underlying technology that powers Firstleaf and is catered to the dining experience. We use patented technology in our lab in Napa to physically analyze the composition of each wine that the restaurant carries, and map that to the customer’s unique palate or entree selection. That’s why we fully expect WineMatch will provide restaurant-goers with the same excellent experience that our members have. It’s like having your own personal sommelier in the palm of your hand.
Are you currently testing this within the restaurant industry?
Yes, we’re now testing Firstleaf: WineMatch at all three of the Roy’s Restaurant locations: San Diego and Anaheim, California, and Bonita Springs, Florida. So far, the response has been great! The patrons of Roy’s are thoroughly enjoying how the wines they’re being served are tailored to their tastes and complement their meals, and Roy’s is delighted that this new addition is enhancing their overall dining experience and generating more business.
What level of ease is involved for restaurants to adopt this technology, and are there any specific training requirements for the waitstaff?
Once the QR codes are on table cards and menus, it’s totally hands off for restaurants. Very much like a waitstaff offering nightly specials, they’ll be versed in offering Firstleaf: WineMatch as an option for ordering wine with their meal. The entire process was designed to prioritize ease of use for both the restaurant and the customer.