Meet the Culinary Entrepreneurs: Eileen Crane
ICE offers a year-round series of lectures called Meet the Culinary Entrepreneurs, during which a wide range of successful culinary business leaders share their expertise with students and guests. Yesterday, Eileen Crane the President & Founding Winemaker of Domaine Carneros spoke.
ICE Director of Wine Studies Richard Vayda shares more: How and why does one make the leap from university nutrition teacher to CEO and Winemaker at an award-winning California winery? Eileen Crane of Domaine Carneros recounted her move to follow her passion for wine to students in ICE’s Culinary Management program and guests when she spoke at ICE yesterday. She explained that when she first went to college there were truly limited professional career choices for women. And even though she was once counseled that since she couldn’t push a barrel she would never get a job in a winery, Eileen abandoned her position in nutrition education to study enology and embark on winemaking.
She was eventually selected by the Taittinger Champagne house to oversee the planning, development and operations of their landmark Carneros château, vineyard and winemaking facility. Forbes.com recently called her “Napa’s Most Powerful Woman.” During the talk, Crane detailed the traditional production techniques used to make her award-winning sparkling wines, as well as the development of their delicious pinot noirs. The informative, entertaining and inspiring talk was topped off with a guided tasting of the Domaine Carneros Brut Rosé Sparkling Wine Cuvée de la Pompadour and Estate Pinot Noir 2007. -Richard Vayda, ICE Director of Wine Studies