Why We Created Wine Riot

The concept was simple: we wanted to create a fun, non-intimidating place where people could learn about wine. So in 2008, Morgan and Tyler maxed out their credit cards, called in every favor they had, and made Wine Riot a reality. It was an instant hit. We’ve grown since those days but our dedicated team continues work their asses off to find the best wineries, incredibly knowledgeable experts and put on an absolutely amazing show.

Come see for yourself and when you do, make sure to say Hi. We’ll be running the show on the floor and behind the scenes in each and every city.

The Mission of Second Glass

We want you to drink more wine. Sure, wine can seem complicated, but in the end it all comes down to whether you like it or not. It’s that simple. Our goal is to give you the tools to find cool wine tastings, talk to experts, explore wine regions and constantly discover new favorites. You don’t have to use dorky wine-speak or spend a lot of time learning about wine to have fun with it. And we’re here to help.

Wine Riot * Team


  • Tyler Balliet Founder and President

    Hear that announcer over the mic at Wine Riot? That’s Tyler, the founder of the event! A lot has changed since the early days of thirty-person events in the basement of a wine shop. Today his brainchild, Wine Riot, is a major force in the wine world, giving people the chance to actually learn about wine and have fun at the same time. You can find Tyler giving an intro “How to Riot” Crash Course at the start of every event and otherwise running around orchestrating the chaos.

    Wine Riot Pro-Tip
    "Drink local!"

    Today there’s fantastic wine being made all over the US, including in your own backyard. Drink more local wine!

  • Morgan First Co-Founder and CEO

    Morgan is the master of ceremonies on Wine Riot Weekend. She orchestrates press check-in and front of house, welcoming attendees and vendors alike. During the Riots you can find Morgan tirelessly hopping all over the venue -- everywhere from booths to the tattoo station -- to make sure Wine Riot is at optimal awesomeness.

    Wine Riot Pro-Tip
    "Try something new!"

    It’s surprising how much you change your mind. Oh, and eat plenty of carbs before so you can try not just ONE new wine, but five.

  • Liz Demakos Content Creator and Party Enforcer

    We've got a party to throw here, people. All that website text, those beckoning booth visuals and snazzy wine one-liners need to effectively rally the troops and bring the enthusiasm. Enter Liz, aka Coach. With a penchant for creativity and eagle eyes for editing, Liz makes sure every last bit of Wine Riot looks and sounds damn good.

    Wine Riot Pro-Tip
    "Get in there!"

    Just have fun! Also, trade secret: The photo booth gets packed at last call, so rally up your friends early on to avoid the line.