Wente Family Estates is pleased to announce the recent promotion of Elizabeth Kester to Head of Winemaking and Andy Lynch to Head of Quality. With a combined twenty-five years with Wente Family Estates, both Kester and Lynch are well-suited to take the organization to the next level in their new positions.
In the Head of Winemaking role, Kester, currently overseeing all wine production activity, will extend her responsibilities to include more strategic alignment between viticulture, marketing and sales. In her new position she will bolster the already impressive Wente Family Estates collection of brands and guide the winemaking team into an exciting future.
Working with Wente Family Estates since 2010, Elizabeth’s many contributions have had a tremendous impact on the development of the core portfolio. Her efforts have resulted in over forty 90+ scores, the development of Wente’s phenolics program – which utilizes cutting edge technology and processes which promote innovation and excellence, and several new brands including Ravel & Stitch and Angels Ink. In speaking about her new promotion, Kester says, “I feel incredibly fortunate to work so closely with the Wente family and their remarkable estate vineyards in the Livermore Valley and Arroyo Seco AVAs. I look forward to taking on a new challenge and leadership role.”
As Head of Quality, Lynch will ensure all systems and resources address all aspects of quality, from the supply chain to the winemaking process, to the end consumer. Lynch will lead and drive continuous improvement with structured problem solving, lean methodologies, and industry best practices. Lynch will continue as winemaker for some of Wente Family Estate’s brands and wines.
Lynch joined Wente Family Estates in 2005 working in the lab and was promoted to Enologist and Winemaker in 2014. Since then, he has led the small-lot wine production for Wente Family Estates and collaborated with winemaking leadership on ideal strategies for fermentation, aging, and blending of the organization’s entire portfolio. “I am passionate about creating efficiencies and improving our craft year after year. I’m really excited about this new role because it will allow me to work with the team in a different capacity to achieve the long-term goals of the business while still allowing me to make wine,” said Lynch.
Kester works closely with COO and fifth-generation winegrower Karl Wente. Karl Wente guides the strategic goals and stylistic direction across Wente Vineyards and remains the lead winemaker of his family’s namesake brand. Remarking on the promotions, Wente stated, “We have a culture of promoting within our company, and we wanted to recognize the vital contributions of Elizabeth and Andy. They are grounded, centered, and incredibly talented.” Wente Family Estates is currently filling new winemaking roles. More information can be found at Linkedin.com/WenteFamilyEstates.
About Wente Family Estates
Founded in 1883, Wente Vineyards has been celebrated for its industry-wide contributions to innovation as the oldest continuously operated, family-owned winery in the country, now owned and managed by the fourth and fifth generations of the Wente family. The company portfolio includes Wente Vineyards, Murrieta’s Well, Hayes Ranch, Ravel & Stitch, entwine, Angels Ink, Unsullied, and Double Decker brands. The winery draws from certified sustainable estate vineyards in the Livermore Valley, San Francisco Bay, and Arroyo Seco, Monterey appellations to create an outstanding array of fine wines distributed in all 50 states and over 70 countries worldwide. In 2010, it joined the top 5% of California wineries that meet all three tiers within the Certified California Sustainable Winegrowing codes & designation. In 2011, Wente Family Estates was named American Winery of the Year by Wine Enthusiast. 2012 marked the 100th anniversary of the Wente family bringing Chardonnay cuttings to California from France. Today, the Wente clones of Chardonnay are the most widely planted in California.
Wente Family Estates is among the top 30 wineries in the United States from the standpoint of production and distribution. The winery has a brisk domestic business and a significant share of the export wine market, where the wines have enjoyed international acclaim for decades. Located just east of San Francisco in the historic Livermore Valley, Wente Vineyards is recognized as one of California’s premier wine country destinations. In 2018, the winery took a leadership role in its longstanding mission to inspire employees and guests to make time for what really matters, as realized through Wente Vineyards’ best practices, outstanding wines, and wine country experiences. For more information, visit www.wentevineyards.com.