A French-American by birth and upbringing, Stephen long ago learned how to balance the dual cultural influences that have marked his life. With an MBA from the University of Chicago and a successful career in international business management, his entrepreneurial drive is predominantly American. Stephen's heart and soul, however, are very French as is evident in his passion for French living and, oh yes, French wine. After reading this article, Stephen saw a unique opportunity to blend VINIV's innovative business model with the time-honored culture and traditions of French winemaking. After nine months immersed in VINIV Sonoma's world of high-end, small-lot winemaking, Stephen returned to Bordeaux to launch VINIV France. When he is not busy ramping up operations, he can still be found traveling through the area's vineyards, meeting local winemakers or—being French-American—simply arguing with himself.
Daniel Llose is General Technical Manager of the Cazes family properties. In the 80s, he carried out the modernisation of the vineyards, winemaking facilities and cellars of Lynch-Bages in Pauillac and Ormes de Pez in Saint-Estephe, which resulted in a universally acknowledged qualitative renaissance for these two great vintages. Thereafter, he has been involved in all Jean-Michel Cazes's companies in France and abroad. In the early 90s, he reconstructed the vineyard of Villa Bel-Air, in the Graves appellation. He was then the chief architect of the revival of Disznókö, the great Tokay vineyard, of Quinta do Noval, a famous area of the Douro Valley in Portugal, of the Domaine de L'Ostal Cazes at La Livinière and of several other wine-producing projects in France and abroad. His technical competence and feel for human relations have made him one of the most respected personalities in the world of wine and his reputation extends well beyond the borders of France.
Eric Boissenot is by many considered the oenologist / consultant of choice for the 'left bank' properties of the Médoc. Recently named one of the wine industry's 100 most influential personalities by both Decanter and La Revue de Vin de France, one only needs to look at his prestigious client list to gauge the quality of his work: Lafite, Margaux, Palmer, Pichon Comtesse, Pichon Baron, Ducru-Beaucaillou, Leoville Barton, Leoville La Cazes... and the list goes on. Eric is working with VINIV on our Médoc vineyard selection and management as well as winemaking support for wines produced from these parcels.