WINEMAKER - JASON KESNER
Kesner Wines was formed in 2002, during my tenure managing Hudson Vineyards in Carneros. Growing fruit for many of the top winemakers in the country, and then sorrowfully seeing my year's work leave on other people's trucks drove me to stay up all night and hand press a single barrel of Chardonnay during that harvest. The light bulb went off.
A cycle was complete.
The next year it was three barrels and our inaugural Chardonnay was released to some of the best restaurants in the country. It was the Highly Recommended Chardonnay at The French Laundry and we have garnered that placement with every vintage since.
I have approached winemaking from a very strong foundation in the vineyard. I grew up in the vineyards here in California, learning to prune, drive tractors and turn on wind machines to ward of frost, at an early age. I think more winemakers should own a well worn pair of pruning shears. Winemaking is at its core, an extension of farming. In 2008 I left Hudson Vineyards and the Napa Valley, and moved to northern Sonoma county to join Kistler Vineyards as assistant winemaker where my time is split between the vineyards and the winery. In the summer of 2014 I was named winemaker there.