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The Panel

This Month’s Panel


Every month we showcase a different group of individuals that have dedicated their lives to the world of wine and food.  These aficionados graciously lend us their palates and expertise and blind taste through several uniquely excellent wines.  The highest rated wines from the blind tastings are then chosen to be shared with our club members.  

Please check out their other endeavors. They are truly allstars in their areas of expertise.    A huge thank you, and cheers!

Click here to see past panel members.

 

Elizabeth Darden – Sales Representative for Revel Wine & WineWise

Elizabeth Darden – Sales Representative for Revel Wine & WineWise

Elizabeth Darden has been working with Revel Wine for more than a decade, selling wines in the Marin, Sonoma and Mendocino areas.  Revel Wines represents a new generation of farmers, cider makers, winegrowers, and winemakers who work with natural, organic, or biodynamic practices in their vineyards and farms and rely on spontaneous fermentations with wild yeast.  She has also been selling WineWise Wines in Marin and Sonoma area for six years – selling European wines that over-deliver, with small production and acid!  Elizabeth is definitely one of The Panel’s MOST favorite wine palates!    

Elizabeth Grivas – Wine Sales and Professional Wine Taster

Elizabeth Grivas – Wine Sales and Professional Wine Taster

While studying fine art/photography in college, Elizabeth worked for the original Whole Foods in their wine & cheese department, where her real love for wine began. Her passions in photography & advertising led her to San Francisco.  Several photo assignments led her full circle back to wine, including a chance meeting with Andre & Dorothy Tchelicheff at the Hill Country Wine & Food Festival and as photographer at Oregon Pinot Camp. She has spent a decade in wine sales. She still spends her free time tasting wine, cooking, and taking lots of photos; splitting her time between San Francisco and Sonoma, CA. 

Brandon Montalvo – Certified Sommelier & Wine Enthusiast

Brandon Montalvo – Certified Sommelier & Wine Enthusiast

Brandon is a Sonoma State University alum for the Wine Business Strategies Bachelors program. He attended Napa Valley Wine Academy for WSET certifications and then became a certified sommelier at Santé in the Fairmont Sonoma Mission Inn, where Brandon spent three years at a Wine Spectator Double Glass Award of Excellence wine list, until joining the sales team at The Donum Estate very recently. He is “a young wine enthusiast looking to make big splashes in the wine industry.”

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Kevin Wenck – Wine Importer for wUst Fine Wine Imports

Kevin Wenck – Wine Importer for wUst Fine Wine Imports

Kevin’s background in wine was built from having an extensive personal collection of European wines for the past 30 years.  In 2017, however, he decided to spend the summer in Europe, exploring almost every wine region, looking for a wider variety of “every day” wines that would also be very food friendly (he loves to cook!).  He found that 80 percent of the wines he liked were not being imported into the U.S. and so he decided to start wUst Fine Wine imports (wines U should try!).  The overall portfolio now totals 120 wines from five countries and 30 producers.

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