Tapas, Wine & Music at Gloria Ferrer, August 4th

Is your mouth watering yet?  Don’t miss the last chance this season to attend Tapas on The Terrace at Gloria Ferrer Caves & Vineyards on August 4th, 5:30-7:30.

Unwind, relax and join in at the end of your day for award-winning wines, tasty tapas, and live Spanish entertainment from Duarte Music!

Ticket price includes a glass of wine upon arrival,
plate of mixed tapas, and live entertainment.

San Francisco International Wine Competition 2016: Exciting Results!

The results are in! Check out the wines that won at SFIWC 2016 this year. Also, enjoy a few pics from my days judging at Hotel Nikko while you are at it. Cheers! Christopher

Pink Out! The start of a colorful flight of Rosé on Day 1;  (clockwise from left); Taking a break with my fellow judges, wine guru Jeffery Stivers and New Orleans-based wine and spirits radio personality Tim McNally; #StrengthInNumbers: Selfie Deluxe with my fellow judges sommelier Eduardo Dingler of Morimoto Napa; wine educator Ian Blackburn of LA-based WineCloudInc; sommelier Tonya Pitts of One Market SF, author, wine personality and star of Check Please Bay Area Leslie Sbracco, and author, sommelier and proprietor of A16 and RN74 in SF, Shelley Lindgren; The magnificent menu for the Judges Dinner at Hotel Nikko International, with dazzling wines provided by Gloria Ferrer and Jaimeson Ranch wineries.

St. Francis Film Festival: The Candidate, July 21

candidateThis week at the 7th Annual “Stars Under the Stars” Outdoor Film Festival at St. Francis Winery will be the political classic “The Candidate”, starring a youthful Robert Redford and Peter Boyle.  I will be there as your festival sommelier to pair St Francis’ world class wines with world class films. Starts at 7pm, admission is free!

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The Candidate
Starring Robert Redford & Peter Boyle (1972)
Pre-show concert by: The Atomic Lounge Show
Thursday, July 21, 2016

Featured Wines
$10 per glass (Includes a keepsake St. Francis logoed glass) | $8 Refill
2015 Chardonnay, Sonoma County
2013 Old Vines Zinfandel, Bacchi vineyard, Russian River Valley

St. Francis Film Festival: National Treasure Part 2, July 14

220px-Book_of_secrets_postThe 7th Annual “Stars Under the Stars” Outdoor Film Festival at St. Francis Winery continues.  Get ready for an evening of intrigue with “National Treasure: Book of Secrets”, which includes an introduction by the film’s Executive Producer Charles Segars.  I will be there as your festival sommelier to pair St Francis’ world class wines with world class films. Starts at 7pm, admission is free!

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National Treasure: Book of Secrets
Starring Nicolas Cage (2007)
Pre-show concert by: Ragtag Sullivan Duo
Thursday, July 14, 2016

Featured Wines
$10 per glass (Includes a keepsake St. Francis logoed glass) | $8 Refill
2015 Chardonnay, Sonoma County
2013 Meritage, Anthem, Sonoma County

Sawyer Somm Episode 1: Featuring the Nerd Stalker

Welcome the inaugural Sawyer Somm podcast, with your erstwhile hosts, myself and the amazing tech wizard Adolfo Foronda, aka The Nerd Stalker. We will be coming to you monthly, or thereabouts, to discuss wines, interesting devices (sometimes about wine), special guests (sometimes in the wine industry) and whatever else comes up in our scintillating conversations. Hope you will be joining us on my You Tube station:  Subscribe to be kept abreast of the frequency of our posts!

In the meanwhile, crack open a good bottle, put on your comfy sox, get planted on the couch and check out our first episode! As a primer here are some details about the items we will be mentioning:

Tempour made by Soiree Home and designed in Napa Valley.

Summertime wines!
J. Lohr 2015 Gesture Grenache Rose, Paso Robles. $18
Tablas Creek 2015 Vermentino, Estate Grown, Paso Robles. $27
Fulcrum 2013 Pinot Noir, Landy Vineyard, Russian River Valley. $58

St. Francis Film Festival: Sleepless In Seattle, July 7th

It’s back again, the 7th Annual “Stars Under the Stars” seattleOutdoor Film Festival at St. Francis Winery.  I will be there every Thursday in July as your festival sommelier to pair St Francis’ world class wines with world class films.  Starts at 7pm, admission is free!

Sleepless in Seattle
Starring Tom Hanks & Meg Ryan (1993)
Pre-show concert by: Z & The Benders
Thursday, July 7, 2016

Featured Wines
$10 per glass (Includes a keepsake St. Francis logoed glass)
2015 Chardonnay, Sonoma County
2014 Pinot Noir, Russian River Valley

Collage of Memories from an incredible Telluride Wine Festival 2016!

First of all a big THANK YOU to the wonderful folks at Gloria Ferrer, Wilson-Daniels, Deutch Family, Keller Estate, Banfi, Ramey, Failla, Aril, Goosecross, Grieve,  Arista, Garnet,  Palm Bay Imports, E&J Gallo, Rodney Strong, Southern Wines & Spirits, Republic National Distributing Co & Grand Vin, and especially my assistant Teale.  They all made this happen!


Warm welcome to the historic town of Telluride on Main Street with the famous Idarado Legacy Trail and Rocky Mountains in the background. (top/bottom) Exploring the complex flavor profiles of Coastal Pinot Noirs with tasty offerings from The Calling, Garnet Vineyards, Keller Estate, Arista Winery and Three Sticks Wines. Special thanks to Sonoma County Vintners & Petaluma Gap board member Ana Keller for being part of this sold-out seminar for 70 people with me!


For my pairing with the exclusive Caviar Dinner at a private residence in Mountain Village, an all-star lineup of fine European bubbles from Gosset Champagne, Pierre Sparr, and Buglioni. (Left)
-Alsatian Invasion: Fun Sunday morning photo shoot with a bottle of the Pierre Sparr Cremant d’Alsace Brut Rose and the spectacular Bridal Veil Falls in the background. (top right to bottom)
-My great friend Lars Leicht of Cru Artisan and Banfi Vintners speaking to a packed house at our fun seminar and tasting, The Extraordinary Tuscan Experience.
-Sonoma County Vintners in bubbly form! Fabulous bottles of the Gloria Ferrer Blanc de Noirs and the J Wine Company Cuvee 20 featured at an amazing Saveur Pass Luncheon & Sparkling Wines to kick off the festival with the towering Mount Wilson in the background.

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Post-Caviar Dinner photo I took of the star chefs I was honored to work with at the Telluride Wine Festival 2016 (from front): James Reaux of the Coast II Coast Restaurant Group; Angela Covington of Manchester Farms Quail; local star Angelee Aurillo; Bernard Guillas of Marine Restaurant in San Diego; and Master Baker Lionel Vatinet.


The brilliant Second Course at the Caviar Dinner created by talented Chef Bernard Guillas of Marine Restaurant in San Diego featuring fresh sashimi-grade Alaskan Halibut, Black River Caviar, and more flavorful accouterments! (top left)
-At the “King Georges” Gala to honor iconic French Chef George Perrier, founder of Le Bec-Fin Restaurant in Philadelphia in 1970, a Soufflé Glace Grand Marnier by Chef Jason Bayle. (left to right)
-#SawyerSelfieDeluxe with Chef Ann Cooper, founder of the Chef Ann Foundation, a magnificent charitable organization focused on making sure kids eat healthy at schools across the nation. Check out www.chefannfoundation.org to learn more information about this amazing project.
-Recreating one of Chef George Perrier’s most famous dishes during his forty-year stint at his famous restaurant in Philadelphia, the Gallette de Crabe “Le Bec-Fin” by Chef James Reaux.

Jean Arnold Sessions new Exec Director of SVVGA

A hearty congratulations to my friend Jean and the Sonoma Valley Vintners & Growers Association for making their relationship formal!

My fun photo of Jean Arnold Sessions with Alexandra O'Gorman of Ramey Wines and Summer Kostik Jeffus of Deutsch Family Wine & Spirits at the Sonoma County Barrel Auction in April.
My fun photo of Jean Arnold Sessions (center) with Alexandra O’Gorman of Ramey Wines and Summer Kostik Jeffus of Deutsch Family Wine & Spirits at the Sonoma County Barrel Auction in April.

“It has been a long-held dream of mine to be a leading voice for our wine community. The vintners of Sonoma County have many stories to tell. These stories bring to life the challenges of working with such diversity of land, dedication to sustainable grape growing for the highest quality of winemaking, while working together to care and support our agriculture and our community. This is an exciting time to be part of the Sonoma County Vintners.” — Jean Arnold Sessions.

You can read details about their joint venture HERE!

Podcast featuring Sawyer Somm!

In the mix of organizing wine seminars, shipments and special guests for the Telluride Wine Festival, I also made time to record this podcast interview with Susan Viebock at Telluride Inside & Out.  Keep an eye on my social media for interesting wines, guests and activities this week at the festival!

For more about TWF and the Somm go to
Somm Of It All, Christopher Sawyer!

(Much gratitude to Adolfo & Daedalus for their technical assistance!)