About Us

It's a pleasure to meet you.

Alleah Friedrichs

Co-Founder & President

Alleah has spent the last 10 years managing various sales teams and consulting projects. When she moved to San Francisco to pursue her MBA, she immediately became addicted to weekend trips to Napa, Sonoma, and Lodi. It took only a few years for her love of wine and entrepreneurial spirit to merge into what is now Bliss Wine Imports. In 2015 she became a certified sommelier.

"10 years ago I started as many young wine drinkers do, loving $4 bottles of white zin. As I was introduced to new wines my palate expanded. Now I love many wines from all over the world and have a lot of fun teaching people about wine. Knowing how to drink and the story behind wine really enhances the experience. It's all about experience and having a great time." - Alleah

Andrey Ivanov, Master Sommelier

Director of Wholesale Accounts

Andrey has been winning awards and honors as one of the country's top sommeliers for years now, from organizations like Food & Wine Magazine, Wine Enthusiast, and Wine & Spirits Magazine to name a few.

Andrey first connected with Bliss Wine Imports after he toured Portugal and fell in love with wines from producer João Tavares de Pina, for whom Bliss had just become the exclusive United States importer. When Andrey contacted us to order the wines for his forthcoming restaurant, Reeds American Table, we quickly realized he'd be more than just our first restaurant customer, but that a partnership was in our future.

Erin Geyer

Director of Technology & Design

Erin has a 20 year career as a web developer and designer, so it was natural that she would lead the technology and design sides of Bliss Wine Imports. She also has a passion for photography and captured 99% of the photos on this website and our blog.

While she may not be a sommelier, after hundreds and hundreds of winery and vineyard visits, winemaker interviews, and tastings all over the world, she has ended up with a real-world education in wine.

We search the world, one vineyard at a time

Every wine we evaluate involves an in-depth exploration of the place, people and processes that make the wine what it is.

Old fashioned with a twist

We're driven by our love for amazing wine. We spend days, weeks, and months in foreign countries getting to know the languages, the people, the cultures. We explore long, winding dirt roads and find hidden vineyards that don't show up on maps.

We get lost in remote villages and have to ask for directions using hand signals more than we'd like to admit. We hike muddy fields and climb steep hillsides searching for people who make amazing wine. We never stop learning and we appreciate beyond measure the incredible job we have.

Healthy and pure (and often unfiltered)

All of our winemakers use natural, organic vineyard treatments and minimalist winery practices. The pay off is more than just sustainable agriculture and a healthier environment. It also produces better tasting wine! Do you know what chemicals and additives are in the wine you drink?

We're very picky.

Sourcing our Wine

Taste testing

All of our wines must pass the obvious tests. They must be well balanced. Their complexity must match their age, price and intention. They must taste delicious. But this is not enough.

Tasting blind

Part of our process includes tasting wines blind. After we've selected a group of standouts of a certain style, we'll taste them again and again, blindly and at different times and places. It's amazing how some wines can taste good in one situation but taste completely different later or somewhere else.

Only the best wines are consistently delicious, time after time, in every situation. These are the wines we import.

Winemaker questions

When we meet a new winemaker, we spend hours asking them in-depth questions about how they make their wine. We tour their vineyards and their cellars. We taste wine that's not ready to be released yet and wine that's available for sale. We cover all the bases and get to know everything about their wines to make sure they are the perfect fit for us.

Why We
Started Importing

A Gambling Problem

Every time we got a craving for a bottle of wine, we did what everybody does. We hit the supermarket wine aisle, facing countless bottles, feeling anxiety build. It always felt like a gamble, with the odds piled high against us.

Drastic Measures

To fix the problem we decided to quit our jobs and become wine importers so that we could find the best wines, one by one, in person.

The Hunt

We packed our bags and set out for Europe where we spent nine months exploring wine regions and tasting thousands of wines. What did we look for? At first, we looked for any wine that was not already imported in the U.S.

Trends We Discovered

As we visited more and more vineyards and tasted thousands of wines, we discovered some very strong trends.

We discovered that the best wines come from:

  • Small winemakers producing less than 10,000 cases per year

  • Winemakers that don't buy grapes from other vineyards

  • Vineyards that don't use pesticides or synthetic fertilizers

  • Winemakers that believe their job is to aid the natural process, not to create flavors to fit a certain profile

  • Grapes that are native to the region, not popular ones that are grown there just because they will easily sell

Now What?

We're a small company importing the small percentage of wines that have passed our tests and we're selling to people like you, who care about quality and taste as much as we do.