Rising Star Sommelier Julian Mayor of Bourbon Steak - Biography

Washington, D.C.

September 2011

A graduate of Boston University who majored in international relations, Julian Mayor originally headed to the nation’s capital to pursue a career in foreign policy. While organizing official government events, he realized that his true passion lay in fine food and wine. So, he traveled to France and then Mexico on culinary expeditions, which further cemented his desire to enter the restaurant industry and eventually led to the decision to trade in his dark suits for chef whites. In 2003, Mayor enrolled at the French Culinary Institute in New York City, where he studied classical French cuisine by night and interned at Balthazar by day. While a student, Mayor developed a keen interest in wine pairings, and volunteered at classes led by the FCI’s Dean of Wine Studies, Andrea Immer Robinson. Upon graduation in 2004, Mayor managed French restaurants in New Jersey and Maryland. In 2008, he joined the opening team at Michael Mina’s Bourbon Steak, Washington, D.C., as a sommelier. He has been an integral part of the restaurant's exceptional wine and beverage program since its inception and is also wine director of its partner, the Four Seasons Hotel. He oversees a team of sommeliers who, together curate the 750-label list, teach wine classes, and participate in local wine events and trainings. Mayor competed in the 2nd Annual StarChefs.com Somm Slam in 2011 and has been featured in The Washington Post and Zagat. In 2014, Mayor earned a StarChefs Rising Star Sommelier Award for his work at Bourbon Steak.