Jillian found her passion for wine while studying neurobiology at UC Davis. Home brewing introduced her to the magic of fermentation, and after taking the “Introductory to Winemaking” class at UC Davis, she quickly switched her major to Viticulture and Enology. She graduated with her degree in 2001 and soon thereafter found herself as an intern at the infamous Bonny Doon Winery.
Her desire to learn more about winemaking has taken her around the globe. To gain essential winemaking experience in a short time, Jillian traveled to the southern hemisphere to work an additional harvest each year. For three years she traveled south to learn how to work with different varieties and observe different winemaking styles. She did internships in McLaren Vale (South Australia), Margaret River (Western Australia), and Stellenbosch (South Africa).
Syrah quickly became her deepest passion and she returned to Bonny Doon as Associate Winemaker in 2005, focusing her talents on the Rhone varieties that the Dooner is known for. She played a major role in the transition to biodynamic winemaking at Bonny Doon.
Now a truly seasoned winemaker, Jillian has started her own passion project, Onesta. She is an artist with a scientific mind. Her artistic expression is manifested in her wines. Jillian believes life should be filled with family, good friends and adventure. Life is short, life by truth and honesty and you will always find peace and happiness. Connect with the people in your life and enjoy wine on a regular basis. Her wines are a library of her life and each year tells a different story and adventure.
Jillian’s wines speak the truth of each growing season and each vintage is a new adventure for her, riding the waves of Mother Nature. Her promise to herself and her customers is to deliver wines with personality and depth every year. Jillian’s wines are made with passion and love, just like she lives her life. Her hope is that every sip of Onesta will ignite the soul with passion and enthusiasm for living life to the fullest.