Jessica Tomei

Jessica Tomei

The Wine Group (Winemaker)

Jessica Tomei is a third-generation Californian who grew up in a close-knit Greek and Italian family with a love of food and wine. Her appreciation for wine led her to earn a degree in Viticulture & Enology at the University of California, Davis, in 2001. As an enterprising student, she combined classroom work with research experiences in the laboratories of departmental faculty. Jessica augmented her winemaking knowledge by completing a harvest internship at Gloria Ferrer in the Sonoma Valley while still an undergraduate. As she has said about this experience, “I didn’t realize it [winemaking] was my true calling until I worked my first harvest and walked through the Pinot Noir vineyards in the Carneros region of Sonoma.”

Following graduation, she gained a year of international experience, first in Italy at Tenute Antinori in Tuscany and then at Caliterra in Chile. By mid-2002, she was back in California, working as harvest assistant winemaker at Robert Mondavi Winery in the Napa Valley.

Jessica then returned to Chile in early 2004, where she was involved in winemaking and sales at Vinedos y Bodegas Corpora in Santiago for three and one-half years.

She and her husband Jeff founded JarvisTomei in Berkeley, CA, in 2003, a project that continued for over 10 years. As if all these activities were not enough, in early 2006 she also was partner and co-founder of The Varietal, a wine import and wholesale company, a position she continued to hold until the end of 2013. Jessica also was the consulting winemaker for Alta Wines in the Napa Valley for two years, beginning in July, 2011.

In mid-2012, Jessica joined Naked Wines in Kenwood, CA, until becoming Director of International Winemaking for Cupcake Vineyards in the Livermore Valley in early 2014. The Cupcake brand is part of The Wine Group, which made her Director of Coastal Winemaking in late 2014 and nearly four years later, Senior Director of this unit. She currently is winemaker for The Wine Group.