SF Wine Week: Sommelier Mark Bright

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By Courtney Cochran

markbright.jpgWhen I first met Mark Bright several years ago, I was struck by the way the twentysomething wine guru seemed wise beyond his years.  I suppose that's inevitable for someone who was named sommelier at the venerable Bellagio Hotel in Las Vegas on his 21st birthday, then turned heads as a sommelier standout at lauded San Francisco restaurant Michael Mina.

Now a partner in the popular SoMa eatery and wine shop Local Kitchen & Wine Merchant, Chicago native Bright oversees the restaurant's wine program - an imaginative collection that includes edgy selections from his recent travels in China and Japan - and adjacent retail shop, as well as the wine program at partner eatery Oola.
Most recently, Mark assumed duties as host of SF Wine Week's upcoming Wednesday night Sommelier Party (11/12), so I took the opportunity to reconnect with him to ask him a few questions about his own wine experiences, and how Wine Week factors in.

Did I mention that Mark also strikes me as one of the busiest wine professionals I've met?

Q&A with Mark Bright
WC: What compelled you to be a part of SF Wine Week?

MB: This is an amazing event and something that the City of San Francisco has needed for a long time.

WC: What do you think SF Wine Week is trying to do?

MB: It is trying to open the world of wine to the younger demographic and wine enthusiasts who are still intimidated by wine.

WC: How does your involvement gel with what you're already doing, business-wise?

MB: I am in the wine business and my passion is wine; promoting this event and wine in general is what I love and is my responsibility as a Sommelier.

WC: What was your single greatest wine moment?


MB: There are too many to pick just one, but a definite top moment was a 1962 DRC La Tache.

WC: How do you see wine preferences/consumption habits changing, and how does SF Wine Week fit into this?

MB: There has definitely been a decrease in wine consumption [given the current economic downturn], and people are looking for the best deals on the market right now - affordable wines of great quality. SF Wine Week will allow guests to find these wines by way of its tastings and discussions.



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