Dinner with the Winemaker

Ember Restaurant

Arroyo Grande, California

April 10, 2018 | 6:00 PM | $250 per person

Meet the Winemakers

Ryan Deovlet

Thoughtful, artistic, and detailed, our head winemaker Ryan Deovlet takes our Central Coast grapes and turns them into delightfully distinct wines.

Ryan’s winemaking background is diverse, with experiences working in Australia and New Zealand. From his travels, Ryan has gained firsthand experience in the vineyards and working crush, all while learning from renowned winemakers.

Upon returning to California in 2005, Ryan took a position with one of the Central Coast’s most legendary winemakers, Stephen Dooley, owner/winemaker of Stephen Ross Wine Cellars. Ryan attributes his foundation in oenology and in the cellar to his time at Stephen Ross. Furthering his education and experience, Ryan took the assistant winemaking position at Red Car Wine Company in 2007. While there, he was able to learn from consulting winemaker David Ramey and top viticulturists Dr. Daniel Roberts and Ulises Valdez.

With a wealth of knowledge and experience under his belt, Ryan has begun the process of making several new and distinct wines to complement the already well-received Biddle Ranch Vineyard wines. From Ryan’s careful selection of premium grapes to the final varietals and his formulating of new blends, Ryan’s winemaking process perfectly aligns with the philosophies and tastes of Biddle Ranch Vineyards.

Ryan founded his own winery, Deovlet Wines, in 2008 in San Luis Obispo. He handcrafts his wines, selecting fruit from the top sites in Santa Barbara County; elegant pinot noir and vibrant chardonnay grown in the cool Sta. Rita Hills AVA, and for his full bodied red blends; cabernet sauvignon and merlot from the warm Happy Canyon of Santa Barbara AVA.

Mike Sinor

Mike Sinor is one of San Luis Obispo’s most acclaimed winemakers. His wines have scored 96 points in Wine Spectator, 95 points in Wine Enthusiast, 95 points in Connoisseur’s Guide and 92 points in Robert Parker’s The Wine Advocate.

His winemaking career on the Central Coast spans more than 20 years. Sinor worked his way up in the wine industry, starting as a “cellar rat” while studying at Cal Poly in San Luis Obispo. He learned Old World winemaking techniques in Burgundy, Bordeaux and the Rhône Valley in France and traveled “Down Under” to labor in Australia’s Margaret River wine region while on a winemaking sabbatical in 2001.

He was formerly the consulting winemaker for Center of Effort winery in the Edna Valley, winemaker at Domaine Alfred Winery in the Edna Valley and assistant winemaker at Byron Vineyard in the Santa Maria Valley.

Sinor is winemaker and proprietor of Sinor-LaVallee Wine Company, combining his name and his wife, Cheri LaVallee’s name. They meticulously grow pinot noir, syrah, chardonnay, albariño, pinot gris and grenache on their organically-farmed wine estate, Bassi Vineyard, 1.2 miles from the Pacific Ocean, overlooking the Avila Valley.

Sinor is also the director of winemaking at Ancient Peaks winery in the Paso Robles wine region, where he directs the quality and style of the wines, while overseeing viticultural practices at the winery’s estate Margarita Vineyard. “The opportunity to work with Margarita Vineyard is what really drew me to Ancient Peaks,” Mike says. “It stands apart as the southernmost vineyard in the Paso Robles region. The growing conditions here are remarkable and that’s something I’m driven to reflect in the wines of Ancient Peaks.”

Meet the Chef

Brian Collins

As the Chef and Owner of Ember Restaurant, Brian Collins is known for his modern approach to regional Italian Cuisine on California’s Central Coast.

A native of Arroyo Grande, Brian was drawn to food and cooking at an early age. After taking his first cooking job at a local café he was immediately drawn to the restaurant industry. Shortly thereafter, Brian enrolled in the California Culinary Academy in San Francisco and the journey to become a chef had begun.

Prior to graduation, Brian obtained an intern position at Berkeley’s famous Chez Panisse Restaurant in 2000. Upon the completion of a three-month internship and graduation from culinary school, Brian was offered a full-time position which turned into a six-year stint cooking under the tutelage of Alice Waters. Brian credits much of his culinary philosophy and influence to Chez Panisse and its talented brigade of chefs.

In 2006 the time had come to return to the Central Coast with the determination to open a restaurant of his own. After cooking at Lido restaurant as both Sous Chef and Executive Chef, Brian found inspiration in the Santa Barbara Wine Country in a small town called Los Alamos. As the Chef of Full of Life Flatbread, Brian created weekly changing menus that gained the restaurant notoriety as one of the region’s top culinary destinations.

After scouting potential locations, Brian discovered a property in his hometown of Arroyo Grande and opened Ember. The restaurant was an immediate success and quickly became known as one of the top restaurants on the Central Coast.

About the Event

Sansum Diabetes Research Institute (SDRI) is hosting a fundraiser to raise awareness and support research for those impacted by diabetes. “Dinner with the Winemakers” will take place at Ember Restaurant in Arroyo Grande on Tuesday, April 10th at 6 pm. Guests will enjoy a gourmet dinner and premiere local wines from Deovlet Wines, Sinor-LaVallee, Biddle Ranch Vineyard, and Ancient Peaks. All proceeds will benefit SDRI to support research, education, and care for those impacted by diabetes.

Named one of the 100 Best Wine Restaurants in America by Wine Enthusiast, Ember impresses with its wood-fired, Italian-inspired cuisine featuring seasonal, locally sourced produce. The highly regarded restaurant owner and chef Brian Collins, an alum of Chef Alice Waters’ Chez Panisse, and his talented team of chefs dazzle diners from Ember’s open kitchen where they create flavorful appetizers, pizzas, entrees, and desserts.

San Luis Obispo County winemakers Mike Sinor and Ryan Deovlet bring decades of experience handcrafting a wide range of ultra-premium wines. Mike Sinor’s acclaimed wine label, Sinor-LaVallee, specializes in pinot noir, chardonnay and syrah grown at his estate overlooking Avila Valley. Sinor also produces high-end, warm climate red and white wines for Ancient Peaks Winery, with its estate vineyard located on historic Santa Margarita Ranch near Paso Robles. Ryan Deovlet creates artisanal pinot noir, chardonnay and red blends under his revered label, Deovlet Wines, while also producing a variety of fine wines for Biddle Ranch Vineyard in San Luis Obispo’s Edna Valley.

We are delighted that these respected artisans are generously collaborating together to create a highly anticipated dining experience to benefit Sansum Diabetes Research Institute.