We pride ourselves on being Napa Green Land and Winery certified
Robin & Michell recommend working part-time in a tasting room to get started in the wine industry.
How many years have you been in the Napa Valley wine industry?
We started in 2006.
How did you get started in the wine business?
Robin says: I began as a grower on my cattle ranch in San Luis Obispo after I realized that growing grapes in the Edna Valley was more profitable than running cattle.
Michelle says: I worked for a marketing company on rebranding the San Luis Obispo Vintners & Growers Association.
What are the most rewarding aspects of your work?
Working with people in the wine industry, philanthropy and sharing our love of Napa Valley with our customers.
What are the greatest challenges?
Having enough days in the year to spend more time sharing wine with our vintner friends and continuing to hire quality people and putting together a great team. It’s about people. Without people, you don’t have a great winery.
Our motto at the NVV is "cultivating excellence." What does this phrase mean to you and how do you cultivate excellence at your winery?
We’ve always focused on creating luxurious experiences with a trifecta of the senses centered around our hospitality, sense of place and wine.
What do you think makes Napa Valley unique compared to other wine regions?
Climate, the beauty and the wine, of course.
What are you doing at your winery to help preserve and enhance Napa Valley for the future? (e.g., sustainable practices, family succession plan, community service, etc.)
We pride ourselves on being Napa Green Land and Winery certified. We also give back to the local community by being heavily involved in Auction Napa Valley, Festival Napa Valley and the St. Helena Hospital Foundation, along with other organizations.
If you weren't a Napa Valley vintner, what would you be doing?
Robin says: Playing golf and bridge.
Michelle says: Marketing and communications in a full-service PR firm.
If you could open a bottle of your wine and share it with any three people (living or not), who would they be?
Michelle says: My mother, father and one of my grandmothers.
What advice would you offer someone trying to get into the Napa Valley wine industry?
Work part-time in a tasting room and take wine education classes. For aspiring vintners, you’ve got to have a plan to sell the product.
What's one thing people would be surprised to know about you?
Robin says: I don’t just dress like a cowboy, I am a cowboy. I’ve won several rodeo competitions.
Michelle says: I played the leading ladies on stage. I was Nellie in South Pacific and Lady Macbeth in Macbeth.