During the early 1970s, Volker Eisele was a graduate student in sociology at the University of California in Berkeley. He found weekend respite from the pressures of academia in the tranquil foothills of the Napa Valley. Enlightened by the peaceful beauty, he and his family moved from their Berkeley home to plant their seeds in the breathtaking 400 acre valley estate on which the vineyard is located. In 1974 Volker became a scholar of grape growing.
Renowned as one of Napa Valley’s finest quality grape growers, Volker has dedicated over three decades to mastering the art of sustainable organic viticulture. His passion for grape growing and land preservation serve as a beacon to others. He is past president of the Napa County Farm Bureau as well as of the Napa Valley Grape Growers and was presented the Napa Valley’s 2008 Agriculturalist of the Year award.
Volker’s approach to fine winemaking is simple: exceptional fruit produces exceptional wine. Guided by this overarching principle, he began bottling wine under the Volker Eisele Family Estate label in 1991.
Liesel, Volker’s wife, winery partner and landscape architect, brings an entirely different dimension to the winery. She concentrates on the aesthetics of the family estate as well as the horticultural well being of plant life in Chiles Valley. Her firm has designed the landscape plans for many residential and commercial projects including numerous wineries in the region. With her love of the land and deep understanding of the “terroir” that makes wine so unique, she continues to be an indispensable partner in the success of Volker Eisele Family Estate.
Alexander Eisele grew up on the vineyard and, while it might be said that he has followed in his father’s footsteps, has taken the science of growing superb grapes to another level. As a small boy he often snacked on the juicy fruit right off the vine and refined his taste buds at an early age. His choice of career was no surprise. Alexander, who is fluent in German and Spanish, obtained his degree in International Business and is well equipped to manage the challenge and complexity of a family winery. With his business degree, foreign language skill, refined wine palate and love for the land, Alexander is the ideal successor to his father.
Christiane, like her brother Alexander, also grew up on the ranch. Her love of wine led her to complete a degree in Viticulture and Enology at UC Davis. From there she moved on to Medical School and a specialty in Emergency Medicine at Charity Hospital in New Orleans. While she lives away from Napa and is following a career in medicine, she still finds time to indulge her passion for wine and to assist her wine-making family whenever possible.
The newest addition to the family is Catherine, Alexander's wife. She is a Napa native and has been exposed to wine and vineyards since childhood. Her job as manager of an accounting firm in St. Helena has given her valuable business experience. Catherine has also become an indispensable member of our tasting team and assists Alexander with marketing strategies.
At Volker Eisele Family Estate, the vineyard is a special place that embodies the passion of the Eisele Family to produce exceptional grapes and elegant wines.