This is an incredible time at ZD Wines because recently we had the privilege of welcoming aboard Jill deLeuze, my little sister. You are probably thinking to yourself, “Another deLeuze at ZD? How do they do it?” The answer is that your guess is as good as mine. Could it be destiny?
Jill, like me, spent her childhood summers on the bottling line and in the cellar learning the “hands-on” side with the rest of the cellar crew. I fondly remember a bottling day many years ago when Jill was helping in the cellar and my Dad asked her to connect a line to a tank of Cabernet Sauvignon. If you have examined our tanks before, you will notice that there is a valve clamped to every outlet on the tank, and a cap clamped over the outlet of the valves, which must first be removed before a hose can be attached.
Winemaker Chris Pisani (Assistant Winemaker at the time) heard the blood-curdling scream from across the cellar. Jill had accidentally removed the clamp on the backside of the valve releasing a high-powered stream of Cabernet onto the floor. Luckily, Chris was close by so we lost very little wine and Jill learned her first lesson about the finer details of cellar work. Jill will definitely be mad at me for telling this story, but isn’t that what big brothers are for?
After graduating from Napa High, Jill attended UCSB and then UC Davis where she graduated with a degree in Nutrition. So for those who are curious, Jill will happily teach you about the health benefits of drinking wine! Since then she has worked for the Boys and Girls Club of Napa guiding their Teen Center, and more recently with Bounty Hunter Wine Bar in downtown Napa, furthering her wine knowledge. At the winery, Jill will be concentrating her efforts on sales, both in the tasting room and throughout California.
Jill is perfectly suited for these responsibilities. She has an effortless enthusiasm and authentic quality that make you want to give her a hug. She is intelligent, witty and beautiful (I think there is some type of conspiracy where she got all the good genes). Our Grandpa Norman would be so happy to know that Jill has chosen to help carry on the ZD legacy. From the entire ZD family, we give Jill a warm welcome home!
- Brandon deLeuze, Assistant Winemaker (and big brother)