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2018 Sonoma County Barrel Auction Panel of Masters Revealed

Santa Rosa, CA (February 14, 2018) —Today, Sonoma County Vintners announced the specially selected panel of Master Sommeliers and a Master of Wine responsible for evaluating the one-of-a kind wine futures to be featured at the 2018 Sonoma County Barrel Auction scheduled for April 20th.  The seven panelists from across the United States will begin double blind tastings of lot submissions in early March, evaluating each entry for quality control, varietal correctness and to ensure each is a true representation of Sonoma County by appellation. All lot selections will be finalized by the end of March.

“We are proud to take this extra step to ensure the highest quality wines for our attendees,” says Sonoma County Vintners Interim Executive Director Michael Haney.  “This year’s group represent some of our finest restaurants and retailers in the country. We are honored to have them and value their expertise.”  2018 panelists are:

Randall Bertao MS, Los Altos Golf & Country Club – Los Altos, CA

One of four sons, Randall Bertao was expected to work for the family’s Central California dairy business. Instead, he moved to Los Gatos to work at Mt. Charley’s, where he was first introduced to wine. In 1984, Bertao journeyed to England, where he launched 34 Surrey Street. After ten years in London, he returned home and learned about the Court of Master Sommeliers while working at the Los Gatos Brewing Company. He passed the Master Sommelier exam in 2005 and has since worked as General Manager of the Los Altos Golf and Country Club.

Sandy Block MW, Legal Sea Foods – Boston, MA

The first American resident on the East Coast to earn certification as a Master of Wine, Sandy Block has dedicated his career to creating effective ways to communicate about wine and food together. His extensive credits include editing wine journals and magazines, writing monthly columns, serving on boards, teaching advanced wine courses, creating wine studies curricula for prestigious universities, and operating wine schools. Block currently serves as Vice President of Beverage Operations for Legal Sea Foods.

Evan Goldstein MS, Full Circle Wine Solutions, Inc. – San Francisco, CA           

Evan Goldstein is one of the nation’s most prolific food and wine industry veterans. In 1987, he became the eighth American to pass the Master Sommelier examination. The author of several critically acclaimed books on food, wine and hospitality, Goldstein has created wine education and service programs for Seagram Chateau & Estates, Diageo, Allied Domecq and Beam Wine Estates. He is currently President and Chief Education Officer of Full Circle Wine Solutions.

Peter Granoff MS, Ferry Plaza Wine Merchant & Wine Bar and Oxbow Cheese & Wine Merchant – San Francisco and Napa, CA

Peter Granoff was the 13 th American to earn the title Master Sommelier and is one of only 18 Americans that earned the Krug Champagne Cup by passing the entire exam on the first attempt. In 1991, Granoff also received the James Beard Foundation Sommelier of the Year award. Today, he is a lecturer and examiner for the Court of Master Sommeliers educational programs, and co-proprietor of Ferry Plaza Wine Merchant & Wine Bar in San Francisco and his current business partners opened Oxbow Cheese & Wine Merchant in Napa. Granoff is also engaged as a consultant on projects at the intersection of wine, technology and social media.

David Keck MS, Goodnight Hospitality – Houston, TX

Master Sommelier David Keck discovered his love for wine while pursuing a career—and traveling the world—as an opera singer. David passed his Master Sommelier exam in 2016, and shortly after, co-founded Goodnight Hospitality in Houston. His first project, the honky-tonk Goodnight Charlie’s, opened at the end of 2017, and several more projects are planned for 2018. Previously, Keck ran Camerata at Paulie’s wine bar for three years, which rose to national acclaim under his leadership. He was named one of Food & Wine’s Sommeliers of the Year in 2016. Keck has a Master of Music Degree from Rice University, an undergraduate degree in English and Comparative Literature from Columbia University and attended Juilliard for opera performance.

Kyungmoon Kim MS, The Modern – New York, NY

Kyungmoon Kim graduated from the Culinary Institute of America in 2005 and sought to round out his education in hospitality management at the University of Nevada, Las Vegas. In Seoul, South Korea, he accumulated many competition accolades, including third place in the Concours National du Meilleur Sommelier en Vins de France en Corée. After 4 years of running the beverage program, restaurant operations and garnering 2 Michelin stars at JUNGSIK NYC, Kim departed to join the team at The Modern in 2015. Working with The Modern’s wine team, Kim went on to earn a Master Sommelier Certification in 2016.

Madeline Triffon MS, Plum Markets – Detroit, MI

Madeline was the first American woman – and only the second worldwide–to pass the M.S. exam. She is a Chairman Emeritus of the American Chapter of the Court of Master Sommeliers and has served as Scholarship Chair for the group. In 30 years of directing wine programs and events in the Metro Detroit area, she has mentored dozens of service professionals. With numerous industry awards to her name, she is currently the in-house Master Sommelier for Plum Market.

Licensed wine sellers, including retailers, restaurateurs and wholesalers and media may request a ticket to the invitation-only 2018 event. For more information or to request a ticket, visit www.sonomawine.com/barrelauction or contact sommelier@fullcirclewinesolutions.com

The trade-only barrel auction will take place at MacMurray Estate Vineyards™, one of Russian River Valley’s most acclaimed Pinot Noir vineyards, and will follow the 10th Annual Sonoma Summit, rounding out what is certain to be an exciting week of education, networking and opportunity for licensed wine sellers.

About Sonoma County Vintners
Sonoma County Vintners is the leading voice of Sonoma County wine, dedicated to raising awareness of Sonoma County as one of the world’s premier wine regions, noted for its heritage of artisan winemaking, distinct growing regions, and extraordinary quality. Founded in 1944, Sonoma County Vintners represents more than 200 wineries and affiliated businesses throughout the county.

To learn more about Sonoma County Vintners, visit: www.SonomaWine.com.

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