Born in Chicago, Mark Bright has been passionate about wine since he first went to Europe at the age of 15. His travels took him to the regions of Burgundy and the Rhone Valley, where he found his inspiration in the wine world and has kept that focus and advocacy throughout his career. Mark began his career in wine when he joined the Bellagio team on his 21st birthday, working as a sommelier at Aqua Restaurant in Las Vegas. He went on to become the opening sommelier for the flagship programs at the Mina restaurants in San Francisco. In 2005, he was honored as one of the “Best New Sommeliers” by Wine and Spirits and was featured in Wine Spectator as a “New Wine Turk” in 2006. Today, Mark is the Co-Founder and Wine Director for Saison and Angler restaurants in San Francisco and Los Angeles. After working many years in restaurants as a sommelier, Mark was eventually drawn to the Santa Cruz Mountains, where he decided to try his own hand in winemaking and created Saison Winery.
Mark is a passionate advocate of winemaking and vineyards in the Santa Cruz Mountains. As a specialist in wines from Burgundy, he found the micro-climates of the region to resemble some of the greatest wine regions of France. He was particularly fascinated by the ocean influence and diverse soil types that could be found here. As a result, we source our grapes from some of the most interesting plots in the Santa Cruz Mountains, including Regan, Coastview, and Wirz vineyards. Because Mark is a specialist in French-style winemaking, our wines are primarily made using Burgundy, Bordeaux, and Rhone varietals. Stylistically, we place an emphasis on small lot production and single vineyard expression, with the intention of bringing forth purity and quality from each harvest.
Awards & Press
- Young Gun of Wine