French-born Wine Executives Organize

Food, wine and ideas flow at Raymond Vineyards

by Jim Gordon
French Raymond Vineyards
The French Wine Executives met Sept. 30 at Raymond Vineyards. The group, founded by Jacques Brix (left), includes French-born winemakers and wine industry suppliers.
St. Helena, Calif.—The French Wine Executives, an association of French-born winemakers and wine industry suppliers working in the United States, met Sept. 30 at Raymond Vineyards to enjoy the new hospitality facilities with Raymond’s owner, Jean-Charles Boisset, to network with each other and enjoy the cooking of French-born Michel Cornu, Raymond’s corporate chef.

The association has grown to 54 people since Jacques Brix, vice president and director of sales for Wines & Vines, organized the first gatherings in 2009, with help from Melanie Thomas and Stephane Janson of Janson Capsules. Twelve members are winemakers or winery principals.

To date, the group’s goals have remained low key, emphasizing the exchange of success stories and professional experiences over food, with BYOB wines from the members. “It’s all geared to improve these people’s services and business results in the North American wine industry,” said Brix, a native of southwest France.

He said the next steps for the group are to approve a name, write a mission statement, solidify rules for membership and meetings, and to discuss further expansion—if and how it should be accomplished.

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