Winemaker Shalini Sekhar – Neely Wine and More! Ep. 39

We strike a harmonious cord in the wine world with this episode! Say hello to winemaker Shalini Sekhar. She wears many hats in her role as winemaker for Neely Wine in the Santa Cruz Mountains and Waits-Mast Family Cellars in Mendocino County, among others. She also finds time to make wine under her own label, Ottovino Wines.

Our setting for this (socially distanced) episode, just before harvest 2021, is the beautiful Spring Mountain Vineyard, home of Neely Wine in Portola Valley, nestled in the Santa Cruz Mountains AVA. We are surrounded by vineyards, redwood and oak trees.

Discover how this former classical musician, who excels at the piccolo and aspired to be a concert performer and music teacher, became a leading Indian-American winemaker. She is carving out a path that allows her to persue her dream of teaching into being a mentor to women entering the wine industry, especially women of color. And, she’ll share how she balances her very busy career, which involves lots of road trips to vineyards, with being a mom.

Shalini also gives us an impromptu piccolo performance. So pour a glass and enjoy a delightful and engaging conversation!

Wines tasted in this episode:

Ottovino Wines 2020 GrĂ¼ner Veltliner, Alfaro Family Vineyard, Santa Cruz Mountains

Neely Wine 2018 Home Block Chardonnay, Spring Hill Vineyard, Santa Cruz Mountains

Waits-Mast Family Cellars 2017 Pinot Noir, Oppenlander Vineyard, Mendocino County