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The Winemaker

Jay Buoncristiani

Long before taking his first sip of wine, Jay began working in the vineyard and helping with crush. In elementary school, he and his brothers pruned vines on their family vineyard and made wine at home with their father in the garage.

After graduating with a Bachelor of Science from Santa Clara University, Jay took a summer job as a cellar hand at Hess Collection Winery. His goal was to earn enough money to travel before applying to medical school. But he soon realized he had found his calling. In just five years, he rose through the ranks to become the Hess winemaker at the tender age of 26. In 2000, he began to work with fruit from a young, but promising vineyard – Stagecoach!

After leaving Hess in 2005, he continued to make wine with Stagecoach fruit for several premier wineries including Buoncristiani Family Wines, garnering many accolades – including for a red blend that Wine Enthusiast ranked among the top 100 wines in the world. It seemed only natural that his next move would be to join Krupp Brothers where he has the opportunity to select his favorite Stagecoach Vineyard blocks for our wines. 

He has found fast success with Krupp Brothers, earning stellar marks from Robert Parker’s Wine Advocate, with a rating of 94+ for the 2013 M5, a 94 for the 2013 Black Bart Syrah and a 93 for our flagship 2013 Veraison Cabernet Sauvignon.  

Jay’s enthusiasm shines through when talking with wine lovers about his craft. Always quick with a joke and a smile, his charismatic personality is almost as unforgettable as the wines he creates.