When you follow your passion, you pour yourself into it wholeheartedly. Work ceases being work. It becomes something you enjoy, something that feels more like, well, play.
For Craig, there’s nothing he’d rather be doing than walking through vineyards, crumbling clumps of soil in his hands, smelling the air, understanding a particular harvest, and coaxing from it a nectar that’s wonderfully delicious. Katie and Joel share with Craig a passion for wine, but their first love is the world of graphic design. They were drawn to it at an early age and have immersed themselves in it ever since. At their firm, Hatch Design, they craft brand identities, packaging, and communications that not only further their clients’ goals, but make the world a little more beautiful a place for all of us.
And so JAQK Cellars was born. Not so much a business as a blank canvas. Not so much an enterprise for three colleagues as a way for three creative souls to indulge their passions. A way for them to slave away doing what they love till their hearts’ content. View all JAQK Cellars Wines
About Napa Valley
It's hard not to think of Napa Valley when thinking of California wines. The region is, after all, the one that brought world recognition to California wine making. The area was settled by a few choice wine families in the 1960's who bet that the wines of the area would grow and flourish. They were right. The Napa wine industry really took off in the 1980's, when vineyard lands were scooped up and vines were planted throughout the county. A number of wineries emerged, from large conglomerates to small boutiques to cult classics. Cabernet Sauvignon is definitely the grape of choice here, with many winemakers also focusing on Bordeaux Blends. Whites are usually Chardonnay and Sauvignon Blanc.
Notable FactsWithin the Napa Valley lie smaller sub-AVAs that lend even more character specifics to the wines. Furthest south is Carneros, followed by Yountville, Oakville & Rutherford. Above those two is St.-Helena and finally, just grated an AVA, Calistoga. These areas are situated on the valley floor and are known for creating rich, smooth Cabernet Sauvignon, Merlot and Chardonnay. There are a few mountain regions as well, nestled on the slopes overlooking the valley AVAs. Those include Howell Mountain, Stags Leap and Mount Veeder. Wines from the mountain regions are often more structured and firm, benefiting from more time in the bottle to evolve and soften.
The most famous of the California wine regions is Napa Valley, and these wines are certainly outstanding – but it's not as broad and diverse as its larger neighbor, Sonoma County. Down south, Santa Barbara's Santa Maria Valley is well-known for its Rhône blends, as well as cool-climate varieties like Pinot and Chardonnay. The Central Coast, the largest California AVA, has many different microclimates that lead to a wide range of wines with many sub-AVAs.