Gianna Ghilarducci Kelly

Gianna Ghilarducci Kelly

Galerie (Winemaker)

Gianna Kelly is a native of California who grew up in Sonoma County, where she was introduced to wine at an early age—sitting on her father’s knee as he made selections for the wine list of their family restaurant. She graduated from Santa Clara University in 1998 with a B.S. degree in Chemistry and then joined IBM at its Almaden Research Center near San Jose.

She soon found that pursuing research on polymers was not as alluring as working in the wine industry, so she redirected her chemistry skills for a year by moving to Enologix in her hometown of Sonoma. In mid-2002, she started a two-and-a-half year stint as enologist for Stag’s Leap Wine Cellars in the Napa Valley, where she fell in love with Bordeaux varieties and honed her winemaking skills by working with Cabernet Sauvignon and Sauvignon Blanc. Gianna then took a harvest enologist position at Arrowood Vineyards & Winery in Glen Ellen until early 2015, after which she spent three-and-a-half years in a series of positions at St. Francis Winery & Vineyards, ending as assistant winemaker there in 2018.

In November, 2018, Gianna was named assistant winemaker at Cardinale Winery in the Napa Valley. A year later, she became winemaker for Galerie, a unit of Jackson Family Wines as is Cardinale. The winery is known for its distinctive Cabernet Sauvignon, Sauvignon Blanc, and Riesling wines from the Napa and Knights Valleys.

No stranger to balance, she is not only applying this to producing her wines at Galerie, but also to raising three young children at her home in Sonoma. As a lover of cooking and entertaining, her favorite wines combine high quality with an approachability that is easy to share with others.