Pessagno Winery fulfills a twenty-year dream of winemaker Stephen Pessagno to produce limited quantities of exclusive luxury wines from prestigious single vineyards throughout Monterey and San Benito Counties.
The inspiration for Pessagno Winery is attributed to Stephen's grandfather, Anthony Escover, who introduced him to winemaking on the family's Santa Clara Valley ranch in 1974. "How vividly I remember crushing overripe Zinfandel grapes - stems and all - into 500 gallon redwood tanks, and I'll never forget the enticing aroma that filled the barn during fermentation," Stephen recalls.
During a successful career as a Mechanical Engineer, Stephen's relentless passion for making wine continued to grow. This home hobby, however, quickly outgrew the confines of his garage. It was in 1982 that he decided to experience wine making from the ground up and worked the "crush" at Kirigin Cellars, a small winery in Gilroy.
Since earning a degree in Enology from California State University at Fresno in 1986, Stephen has been Vice President and Winemaker for Jekel Vineyards and in 1991-2004 for Lockwood Vineyards. After leaving Lockwood Vineyard in 2004 he purchased and now operates his own winery, Pessagno Winery.
In a fateful serendipitous moment with two of Stephen's closest friends the essence of Pessagno winery was conceived. The three founding partners formed what would become Pessagno Winery in January 1999.
With the 1999 vintage, Stephen's desire to showcase his own wines was finally realized with the first harvest for Pessagno Winery. His knowledge and experience have been applied to produce extremely limited-edition wines of distinction, character, and elegance. "After all these years of winemaking, once again I'm able to make small lots of hand-crafted wines that my grandfather introduced to me," Stephen reminisces.
The Pessagno family crest dates back to the 12th century. Our love of wine dates back as many years. Once you've tried Pessagno wines, we think you'll agree that they are some of California's finest.
Steve Pessagno, Winemaker