Crystal Basin Cellars
Feb 03, 2011 05:36AM
Photo by Dante Fontana
Describe your business. Did you find it, or did it find you?
I have been visiting wineries ever since I was a little kid…so it is a part of my DNA. I was raised with the Gallo kids as neighbors and my dad worked there in the ‘70s. I took over the “under the house” cellar in 1988, recruited some friends to help, and we grew from four barrels to the 400-plus we have now.
How are you involved with both the community and your customer?
We donate lots of wine and our time to a host of local charities for events and fundraising. We look to our wine club members to suggest the charities that they support. Each member can ask for a yearly donation to a cause that is important to him or her.
What life accomplishments are you most proud of?
Creating businesses that have thrived despite our economic mess; raising two smart and beautiful girls; escaping from the Bay Area; and self-reliance.
What’s your hidden talent?
I love writing. I get favorable comments about content that Crystal Basin publishes in our newsletters, emails and Facebook posts. Within the winery, it’s called “blowing foam.”
What’s your biggest job perk?
Hosting people from all over the U.S. and the world at our winery; also, being able to pick a favorite wine on a daily basis.
What’s your favorite place to eat out locally?
Kobe Sushi & Grill – family run, great food, and always a pleasant experience.
Where do you and your family go locally to have fun?
Ice House Reservoir for camping.
What’s your favorite childhood memory?
Wrangling horses at a Wyoming dude ranch.
If you could meet someone living or dead, who would it be and why?
Robert Mondavi. I’d want to ask him where he got the energy to start his wine empire at age 54.
And finally, customer service is…?
The reason people come back to the winery! Great wine and our location are just the price of entry.
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