Fleming's Prime Steakhouse & Wine Bar in South Tampa has taken a step beyond wine and food pairing to sophisticated "mood matching" with its new iPad app for ordering wine.
Several restaurants, including Carmel Café and Wine Bar in South Tampa and Carrollwood, have adopted table side iPad menus for tech-savvy customers. Fleming's "WiNEPAD" has a custom application that allows guests to navigate their extensive wine list.
Heidi Noel of Odessa, the regional service manager for the Southeast for Fleming's, said their WiNEPAD is easy to use.
"You can find different varietals and sort by what you are in the mood for," she said. "We have a recommend tab. If you are feeling festive, it takes you to the page with all the sparkling wines."
Wine white moods range from fragrant and fruity to rich and elegant; red wine moods include big and intense and rich and voluptuous; while sweet wine moods feature sweet and mouthwatering and sweet and powerful.
Noel said the application also provides information about different wineries and vineyards, including details such as whether the grapes are organic.
"In South Tampa, there are a lot of people who like to wine and dine," she said. "They choose a different wine for each course. The WiNEPAD helps you make choices and perfect pairings for the entire menu from appetizers to desserts."
The application was developed by Maeve Pesquera, national wine director for Fleming's, and Craig Sheppard, the brand's national IT training coordinator.
The "perfect pairings" showcases wine and food pairings based on menu selections, which takes the guesswork out of the ordering process.
Mike Cline of Palm Harbor, operating partner for Fleming's, said sales have been up since the restaurant adopted the special iPads. He said the application is especially helpful for people who are too timid to ask the server questions. They can see different price points as well as descriptions.
"What it really does is educate people," Cline said. "Sometimes people are afraid to ask about a wine. They might not order a wine because they don't know what to ask."
Wines at Fleming's may be ordered by the glass or bottle. Fleming's has a reserve list that includes more eclectic wines offered by the bottle only.
Each year, Fleming's changes out its extensive wine list. They will introduce new Fleming's 100 Wine List on Sept. 27 at 6 p.m. with a Nights of Discovery event at the restaurant.
"We like to keep it fresh," Noel said. "Every year we have something new and exciting."
For more information on Fleming's, 4322 Boy Scout Blvd., call (813) 874-9463.