GARY FRANSCIONI – OWNER, ROAR WINES
Recognizing the region’s potential for premium wine grapes, we planted our first vineyard in 1996 and named it for Rosella. In 1997 we planted the Garys’ Vineyard in partnership with our good friends and fellow grape growers, the Pisoni family. Since then we’ve planted two more vineyards; our “high-altitude” Sierra Mar Vineyard located at 1000ft above the valley floor and the Soberanes Vineyard a second partnership with the Pisoni family, located on one of the area’s oldest land grants.
In 2001, after years spent developing the pedigree of our vineyards with top-tier wineries, we launched ROAR Wines to showcase the signature flavors of our vineyards and Santa Lucia Highands in a small portfolio of single vineyard and appellated bottlings. The name ROAR is inspired by our family’s passion for work and play; paying homage to the Monterey Bay winds that roar through our vineyards and the thunderous roar of a stadium full of sports fans.
We hope you enjoy our wines, and look forward to raising a glass together with you soon.
ABOUT GARY FRANSCIONI:
Gary Franscioni is a third generation Santa Lucia Highlands farmer. His grandfather, Silvio Franscioni Sr, immigrated to the area from Switzerland in 1886, and started a dairy. Years later, Gary’s father, Joe Franscioni, shifted the farming focus to row crops including beans, potatoes and sugar beets. Gary grew up in the family business, and developed a deep respect for the land and what it could produce when nurtured properly. Upon graduating from Cal Poly with a degree in agri-business, he took over management of the family’s farming business, which owned and managed more than 200 acres of row crops in the Salinas Valley.
Recognizing the region’s potential for premium wine grapes, Gary turned his focus to viticulture. He planted Rosella’s Vineyard in 1996 and partnered with Gary Pisoni in the Garys’ Vineyard a year later. In 2001, after developing his reputation as a grower with Rosella’s and Garys’ Vineyard, Gary and his wife Rosella launched ROAR Wines.
Today Gary is the driving force behind ROAR, overseeing all vineyard and winery operations.
DAVID HEJL - FOUNDER & WINEMAKER, DOMAINE DELLA
My passion for fine wine began while putting myself through school working as a waiter, sommelier and chef, but I found my true inspiration while living in Paris. It was there that I first experienced the art of wine, food and culture in a way that was spiritual. Having been a student of fine wine and food my whole life, this project is a culmination of three decades of experience.
I have been hand crafting distinctive Pinot Noir since 2010. DELLA was created around my obsession and enchantment with Pinot Noir. I am so grateful to my many mentors over the years to get me to this place. My quest is to create an exceptional wine for you and your shared special moments and memories while executing against the envisioned future of a timeless brand which will endure the generations.
Our mission is to craft intense and adventurous wines by partnering with the very best growers to create an exceptional wine. Scheduled for release in 2014, these wines are extremely limited production. I invite you to experience DELLA, a true expression of the place from where it was grown, in harmony and balance from the finest vineyards of Russian River Valley and Sonoma Coast.
David Hejl is the Founder / Winemaker of Domaine DELLA and the former General Manager and CEO of Kosta Browne Winery in Sebastopol, California. Prior to joining Kosta Browne, David accumulated over 30 years experience in growth-oriented strategy execution within the food and consumer products industry and held executive positions with Nabisco, Berkshire Hathaway, Gourmet Award Foods, Ruiz Food Products, and most recently President & CEO of CPI International. In addition, he has 15 years of private equity investment experience and currently sits on various Boards of Directors.
David received his BS in Accounting and Finance from the University of Nebraska, is a CPA, and holds an MBA from Northwestern University’s Kellogg Graduate School of Management. David is also a noted speaker and has been on the Marketing faculty of the University of San Francisco, McLaren School of Management, Marquette University and the University of St. Thomas.
David and his two boys Andrew and Zachary have lived in Sonoma County for over fifteen years and reside in Bennett Valley. David enjoys BBQ, surfing, skiing, winemaking and wine collecting, spending time with family and friends, and learning French.