After many years in New York on the sales marketing side of wine and spirits, and one too many frustrations about how great vineyards were being homogenized by big corporations, Chris headed west to make great wines with character. Having worked with many well-known luxury brands and some of the top restaurants in the world, Chris was eager to combine his business expertise, entrepreneurial spirit, and love of wine. Creating a winery in the Russian River Valley that focuses on the fruit and the land, C. Donatiello Winery shows the delicate balance between the character of the land and the skill of the winemaker. Chris enjoys the challenge of working with classic varietals to evoke a powerful sense of place. Using traditional methods and modern equipment, his goal with C. Donatiello Pinot Noir and Chardonnay is to deliver an experience that is vivid, individualistic, and memorable. In doing so, he’s creating wine that exemplifies both the Russian River Valley, and the man behind the name.
At C. Donatiello Winery, the team scrutinizes each vineyard carefully before choosing to partner with that grower and vineyard year-in, year-out. Soils, trellising, and clones are all researched carefully to see that they act harmoniously. They seek to work with vineyard owners who share the same goals: respect for the land, intensely flavored grapes, unique minerality and acidity, and inimitable terroir. They rigorously taste all of their lots and select only the finest to become part of our single-vineyard wines.