After 20 years of living and breathing the industry, I realized there was a need to address the operational aspect of the wine industry efficiently and affordably. With distribution consolidating and sales managers not having the time for all their producers, essential business functions were not getting the attention they needed. As a result, there were unnoticed gaps and missed opportunities leading to a lack of market growth in the U.S. After working for an import company, managing 100 growers at all times, I wanted to take a more personal route with my producers. From this came The Grape Cycle.
Over the last two decades, I led sales teams for one of the top three distributors in the country and held a leadership position for a prestigious wine importer. My experience reflects all aspects involved in guiding growers through the importation and distribution system for the U.S. market. This process includes strategic planning around business expansion, sales development, consumer marketing, along with a keen awareness of regulations and compliances specific to the U.S. and global wine regions. The management of these various components led to growth for an extensive portfolio of wine brands.
How it all started is an integral part of my journey into the wine industry. While following my love for the outdoors, I found myself gravitating to the altitude in Lake Tahoe, CA. It was here that I discovered my calling. I worked at the only Five Star / Five Diamond restaurant on the lake. It provided the perfect setting to begin my foray into the wine world, the elaborate list of wines carefully sourced from around the globe provided me with a template to study. When I wasn't working, I spent my time pulling information from the likes of Jancis Robinson, Hugh Johnson, and Kevin Zraley.
I knew this would be my forever passion, so I took my knowledge and began my career as the Beverage Director at a high-end hotel in San Francisco, CA. It was there where I fine-tuned my palate, judged on many panels, and developed one of the city's more sophisticated wine programs. I went on the manage two other properties before launching my business career in distribution, importation, management, and marketing.
The Grape Cycle's roadmap involves connecting with a grower's vision, problem-solving, and orchestrating all the pieces together to give an estate winery a long-term solution resulting in continual growth for generations to come.
Cheers to the next adventure that awaits!