High Treason is the vision of John Vuong, a renegade sommelier who has played a leading role in two of San Francisco’s most influential wine programs – Ame and Gary Danko.
During his five years at Michelin-starred Ame – a year and a half of which spent as Wine Director – John delved deeply into the craft and styles of Japanese Sakes, eventually developing one of the most noteworthy sake lists in San Francisco. John’s passion for seeking out new frontiers for wine has led him to classes, seminars, and tastings all around the world, including France, Australia, Portugal, and the rest of Europe.
Ireland began his career along the San Francisco Bay Area’s Peninsula at Parcel 104 in Santa Clara under Master Sommelier Randall Bertao and then as Wine & Spirits Director at Viognier Restaurant in San Mateo, where the wine list he authored earned Wine Spectator’s “Best of” Award of Excellence. In 2006 Ireland moved to the Napa Valley and joined The French Laundry as Sommelier. During his time there, Ireland helped to attain the restaurant’s Michelin three-star status and achieved the Wine Spectator’s Grand Award, becoming one of only 74 restaurants in the world to be recognized with that distinction. He later joined Quince as Head Sommelier. More recently, Ireland was the opening Sommelier, alongside Master Sommelier Yoon Ha, at Benu in San Francisco where he received rave reviews from San Francisco Chronicle’s Restaurant Critic Michael Bauer. Most recently, Ireland worked as Wine Director of The Restaurant at Meadowood, a Three-star Michelin in Napa Valley. He stepped away in 2012 to welcome his new daughter to the world, study for the Master Sommelier exam and concentrate on other projects. Most currently, he is now in charge of the Wine and Beverage program at Bar Tartine and is working diligently to open a new venture in San Francisco’s Inner Richmond district slated to open this year.
Ireland brings more than fifteen years of hospitality experience. Currently an Advanced Sommelier with The Court of Master Sommeliers, he is an Advanced Certified Wine Professional through the Culinary Institute of America at Greystone and was the recipient of the inaugural Bordeaux Scholarship from the Guild of Sommeliers in 2010. Most recently, he attained the California Wine Appellation Specialist designation with honors from the San Francisco Wine School.