Katie Herron, Senior Manager of our tasting room, celebrates 10 years with J next month. Looking back at her decade of experience, she opened up about her thoughts on J. “J means fun, family and bubbles,” she says. “I’m fortunate to lead a team that strives to make guests feel welcome—like an extended member of the J family.”
Katie shared the story of a longtime Club J member, a mother, who emailed her periodically about how J wines are woven throughout her family’s lives. “We have a member whose son’s name begins with the letter ‘J,’ and when he was born, they toasted with J sparkling,” Katie says. “The mom kept us updated through the years, emailing us images of J being served to the grown-ups at her son’s various birthday celebrations, special milestones, etc. When we received pictures of her son graduating from college, we were thrilled to see him enjoying J alongside his parents. Years later, the club member contacted us to purchase sparkling for her son’s wedding. It’s so special to see how J can be so present in people’s lives.”
Katie’s sparkling wine of choice is Blanc de Noirs. “I love the robust red fruit flavors and layers to this wine. The 2012 vintage is my favorite.”
Another J mom, Monica Sheppard, leads the Member Services Department and is responsible for facilitating exceptional service for our Club J members.
“Being inside the J tasting room elicits a warm, fuzzy feeling. It’s truly such an amazing winery—from our incredible winemaker Nicole Hitchcock to our Estate Vineyards to the brilliant Marketing and the top-notch Hospitality teams. There’s truly a dream team of people working here, ensuring our guests and Club J members have a memorable experience and keep coming back for more.”
Monica is a big fan of Chardonnay, and the J wines do not disappoint in this category. “The Barrel 16 Chardonnay, in particular, is so delicious and wonderful with food or just on its own,” says Monica.
We also spoke with Kristen Peck Cropper, who, as our Brand Activation Manager, spends her days dreaming up campaigns to promote J wines and events to wine enthusiasts around the world. “J means togetherness,” says Kristen. “It’s a favorite wine for both my husband and me, and it’s something we love sharing with friends and loved ones. I think J is made special by all the people who work together to bring our wine and culinary experiences to life. I’ve worked in the wine industry for 10 years, and I’ve never seen the love for a winery amongst my colleagues as I see with J. It inspires me every day.”
Perhaps her coworker’s passion for J is fueled by the Bubble Room. “There is no other experience in wine country like the Bubble Room. From winemaking to culinary expertise, there’s an art in putting the Bubble Room experience together. If Michelin awarded stars winery experiences, the Bubble Room would get three!”
But ultimately, celebrating life’s special moments with friends and family is Kristen’s favorite way to enjoy J wines. At the end of the long road to becoming a mom via IVF, we toasted with Brut Rosé after the birth of my sweet boy Bennett.
Rosé of Pinot Noir is a wine that I stock up on once it is released to enjoy all year long. I especially love sipping it during the weekends and I am reading a book in our backyard.”
Our Senior Associate Brand Manager, Laura Maguire, develops the brand strategy for how we reach our J consumers and guests in the most meaningful ways throughout the year. “The magic of J is truly in the people and the passion everyone has to elevate each other’s lives,” Laura says. “What I find so special is our fiercely female-led team, which resonates with the original spirit of our founder Judy Jordan.”
Laura shares the inspiration she’s found in her fellow J moms who have achieved a beautiful work-family balance. “As an expecting mother-to-be, I feel lucky to work with so many role models who show me every day how to balance a commitment to their families with an investment in their own career journeys with J.”
“Come September, I will certainly be celebrating the transition from dog mom to boy mom with my favorite wine from J’s sparkling portfolio, our 2018 Blanc de Noirs. This wine in particular always makes the moment feel that much more special!”
We are tremendously proud of the strength, creativity and passion that each J mom brings to our team. If you’re looking for a special way to celebrate the mothers in your life, gift them a bottle of wine that’s been hand-selected by these exceptional moms! Nothing says “Happy Mother’s Day” like a bottle of J.
*Sarah Joseph Hale was an American writer, activist and editor of Godey’s Lady’s Book, the most widely circulated magazine before the Civil War.