Derek Brown

The furthest over the hill of the three Brown children, Derek paved the siblings’ way into wine by making the initial (and very underaged) discovery of their father’s wine cellar. Derek holds degrees from Dartmouth College and Stanford Graduate School of Business and has worked in investment banking, marketing, and clean energy finance. While working for Apple, he spent seven years living in Paris and exploring some of the world’s most renowned wine regions. His curiosity about winemaking led him to stints working harvests for the Reynaud family in Vacqueyras, France, and for Douglas Danielak in the Napa Valley. Despite his first-hand knowledge of the back-breaking work and attention to detail required to grow and make good wine, Derek planted and farms the Estate’s Brokentop Ranch Viognier vineyard in the hills above Santa Cruz, where he lives off the grid with Audrey, our Keeper of the Books. If you meet him at a Big Basin event, he’ll ask you what wines, beers, and foods you like—some marketing people can’t stop doing informal research.

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