Lisanne Leask

Lisanne Leask

Long Meadow Ranch Winery (Director of Winemaking)

Lisanne Leask grew up loving gardening and cooking. In her youth, in fact, she aspired to being a chef. Upon entering the University of California, Davis, in 2004, she started out as an undeclared biology major, but enrolling in Introduction to Winemaking at the end of her first year there piqued her interest in the subject. She was intrigued by the connection between her interests in farming and producing something that could be shared with friends and family.

Lisanne left school for a quarter in order to work the 2006 harvest at Stag’s Leap Winery in Napa, where she gained experience both in the cellar and the laboratory and was hooked. Returning to school, she switched her major to Viticulture & Enology and earned her B.S. degree in 2006. After graduating, Lisanne spent a year as a research assistant at Davis, during which she was also a laboratory intern at Schramsberg Vineyards for the 2007 harvest. She then joined Bargetto Winery in Soquel, CA, working in the tasting room and laboratory. She left there in Fall 2008 for a harvest internship with Marchesi Antinori’s Tignanello Estate in San Casciano Val di Pesa, Italy. This was followed by a harvest position in the laboratory of Grove Mill Wine Co. in New Zealand.

Returning to California, Lisanne worked the 2009 harvest at Miner Family Winery in Napa as a laboratory technician, before joining Rutherford Hill Winery in Napa, first with a three-year stint as an enologist and then as assistant winemaker for six years. In mid-2019, she was appointed winemaker for Farmstead and Hunt & Harvest Wines, labels of Long Meadow Ranch (LMR), and two years later was promoted to Director of Winemaking for LMR.

Lisanne oversees the crafting of the Farmstead Chardonnay, Pinot Noir, and Cabernet Sauvignon, among her other duties. With respect to winemaking, she says, “I am constantly learning and having to overcome new challenges. It may be a fermentation that behaves differently than I have seen or a blend that comes together in an unexpected way. Those unforeseen and often fortuitous surprises are why winemakers can spend their entire lifetimes making wines and always be learning.” Lisanne has undertaken an additional challenge in the form of being responsible for production of LMR’s olive oil, and new project for the firm.

She lives in Napa with her husband, dog, cat, and chickens.