Born in Ohio and raised in southern California, Jeff headed north to Sonoma State University to earn a degree in Environmental Studies at a time when it was an emerging field rife with opportunity.
But Jeff was in Sonoma, and the lure of the vine is great. Especially if you’re an environmental planner who wants to dig even deeper into the local ecology. He began his transition as an apprentice in the cellar of Mill Creek Winery in Healdsburg, moving quickly to Cellar Master at Matanzas Creek Winery in Bennett Valley. Jeff’s theme was seeking out small family wineries that crafted fine wines with an eye towards being good stewards to the environment.
He moved on to Cakebread Cellars in Napa and B.R. Cohn in Sonoma Valley before taking on winemaking duties at Mendocino’s Jeriko Estate Winery in Hopland, a winery, not far from Bonterra’s McNab Ranch, that produces a variety of certified organic wines.
Jeff joined the team at Bonterra in 2007 and has been an incredible – and ongoing – wealth of knowledge and inspiration for our group.
Beyond Bonterra, Jeff’s three desert island songs are High and Dry – Radiohead, Simple Song – Shins, Do You Realize? – Flaming Lips (all enjoyed with a nice beer, of course).