Don Sebastiani & Sons Hire Michelle McClendon as Winemaker
Don Sebastiani & Sons, the Sonoma Valley-based wine negociant, today announced the appointment of Michelle McClendon as Winemaker, overseeing the company’s portfolio of white wines.
She will join current winemaker Greg Kitchens, who will take charge of the Don & Sons red wines; they will both work closely with Executive Winemaking Consultant Nick Goldschmidt.
"Michelle’s passion for wine and depth of knowledge will make us a smarter wine company and raise the bar for winemaking at Don & Sons,” said Donny Sebastiani, President and Chief Executive Officer of Don & Sons. “She appreciates the nuances and details of fine wine production and I look forward to working closely with her to improve our white wine programs. Given our resources and relationships throughout the state of California, with Michelle’s guidance, the sky is the limit for super-premium white wine making at Don & Sons."
Before joining Don Sebastiani & Sons, McClendon worked as assistant winemaker at Sonoma-Cutrer Vineyards. Prior to that, she was an associate winemaker at Korbel Champagne caves.
“Michelle will bring a fresh approach to our winemaking ,” said John Nicolette, Director of Operations for Don & Sons. “She is a very gifted winemaker who has experience working with new technologies and products from her previous experience at both The Wine Lab and Scott Laboratories. We know she will help us revolutionize our approach to winemaking and I’m excited she’s joining our winemaking team.”
Michelle earned a Bachelor of Science degree in Environmental Biology from Humboldt State University, and will soon be completing the Winemaking Certificate program from University of California, Davis. Michelle was on the board for the Sonoma County Wine Technical Group for five years, and has been a member of both the American Society for Enology & Viticulture, and California Enological Research Association for over a decade.