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Foodie Chap With Winemaker Rebekah Wineburg of Quintessa

Rebekah Wineburg joined the Quintessa team in June 2015 as Winemaker, taking over from Charles Thomas, who is transitioning to Winemaker Emeritus and will be working closely with Rebekah to share his knowledge and experience of the estate and the wines. Charles and Rebekah previously worked together at Rudd Estate, and both are excited to be collaborating once again.

Liam Mayclem & Rebekah Wineburg
Liam Mayclem & Rebekah Wineburg (credit: Foodie Chap/Liam Mayclem)

With experience in the wine-growing regions of California, Oregon, Italy, and New Zealand, Rebekah contributes a worldly perspective to the cultivation and production of luxury wines in Napa. Rebekah's passion for winemaking began when at the age of 16 she visited Napa Valley vineyards with her parents, and an Australian friend of her father who was a chemist and a winemaker. At each of the vineyards he explained winemaking and wine tasting to Rebekah. The discussions from that visit left such a lasting impression that she went on to pursue a dual degree in chemistry and biology at Macalester College with the dream of becoming a winemaker.

Committing wholeheartedly to her dream, she enrolled in the winemaking program at the University of California, Davis, where she earned her master's degree in viticulture and enology.

Rebekah Wineburg (credit: Foodie Chap/Liam Mayclem)

After completing her MS with a thesis on the effects of winemaking techniques on the phenolic composition of Cabernet Sauvignon, she abandoned the lab and went headfirst into a series of harvests in Italy, Oregon, and New Zealand before settling down in Napa Valley where she has worked and continued to learn wine making at exceptional producers, such as Staglin Family, Rudd Estate and Buccella Wines.

She is a professional member of the American Society of Enology and Viticulture and current President of the Napa Valley Wine Technical Group.

After all these years, Rebekah still cannot believe her good fortune – to have become acquainted in her teens with the beautiful Napa Valley and with winemaking, which led to such a fulfilling career.

For Rebekah, the joy of winemaking is the opportunity to be a part of something so much more, as wines have a life and spirit of their own.

Quintessa is a wine country gem located on the Silverado Trail in St.Helena. It boasts some of Napa's best scoring wines. Pavilions on the property overlooking the vines are worth reserving for groups or a couple on a special date. The views are as stunning as the wines.

I met with Rebekah recently for our Foodie chap chat. We enjoyed wine from the barrel, talked wine, walked with's all in this wine filled edition of Foodie Chap.

Cheers and enjoy!
- Liam

Rebekah Wineburg's Quintessa (credit: Foodie Chap/Liam Mayclem)


Rutherford, Napa Valley

Harvest Dates: September 24 to October 30
Varietals: Cabernet Sauvignon, Merlot, Cabernet Franc, Carmenère, Petite Verdot
Maceration: 20-26 days average
Time In Oak: 21 months

Oak: 100% French, 85% new, very fine grained, chateau style, medium-plus toast from diverse forests north of the Loire River. 2012 was an exceptional vintage with ideal weather conditions during key parts of the growing season. The year began with a moderate and dry spring followed by a classic Napa summer of warm days and cool nights. This weather put little pressure on the vines, allowing for idyllic bud break, balanced flowering, even fruit set, and perfect grapes.

The Wine: Rarely do you find a wine that is seamless from start to finish. This wine entices with aromas of violets mingled with red and black fruit. On the palate, it is rich and concentrated, finishing with elegant well-balanced tannins. This is truly an exceptional wine from a textbook growing season.

For more on QUINTESSA,visit


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