These early hands-on experiences reinforced in each of the brothers a desire to pursue educational and professional opportunities that would enable them to one day make world-class wines. In 1999 the brothers commercially founded Buoncristiani Family Winery and have been producing highly sought after Napa Valley wines ever since..
Matt received his Bachelor of Science in Health Sciences from St. Mary’s College in Moraga, California. In pursuit of a career in Cardiac Rehabilitation, he attended East Stroudsburg University of Pennsylvania and completed a Masters of Science degree in 1995. While living in San Francisco and working in the medical field, Matt traveled home to Napa on the weekends to make wine during the harvest season. After three years working in cardiac rehabilitation, Matt forfeited his position at the hospital and moved to Florence, Italy where he studied language, wine, and “la dolce vita”! Upon his return to the Napa Valley in 1999, Matt and his brothers established Buoncristiani Family Winery and began managing small vineyards in Napa.
Matt worked in wine production at the prestigious Rudd Estate Winery in Oakville for more than five years before becoming the Cellar Master at Caldwell Winery. In 2009 Matt took on the roll of Managing Partner for Buoncristiani Family Winery and continues to devote his time solely to the company introducing wine lovers throughout the world to Buoncristiani wines. The experience of working at premium wineries in the Napa Valley provided the brothers with invaluable viticultural and wine production knowledge. These experiences also reinforced Buoncristiani Family Winery’s highest standard of excellence.
Jay attended Santa Clara University in California and received a Bachelor of Science degree in the combined disciplines of Chemistry, Biology, and Physics. After graduation in 1996 he returned home to the Napa Valley where intense home winemaking coupled with Enologist duties at The Hess Collection Winery fueled a passion for the art and science of wine.
By 1999 at the young age of 24, Jay and his brother Matt started Buoncristiani Family Winery while remaining hands-on in the lab, cellar and vineyards at the Hess Collection Winery. From his position as Enologist, at age 26 in 2001 Jay was promoted to Winemaker for the Hess Collection where he remained until the spring of 2005.
Starting in 2005 Jay’s winemaking skills have been directed toward his role as Winemaker at Buoncristiani as well as being the hands-on Consulting Winemaker for a select few additional wineries (Krupp Brothers, Hollywood Classic, JKL, Remridg, and Patland). Jay’s wines have earned high regards from the wine industry’s foremost critics, garnering a multitude of wine scores in the 90s and great achievements such as being named “Rising Star of Napa Cabernet” by the Wine Spectator, # 25 in the Top 100 wines of the world from Wine Enthusiast, and a 98 point rated wine from Robert Parker’s Wine Advocate where Parker called Jay’s wine “truly magnificent.”
Nate graduated from Chico State University where he completed his Bachelor of Science degree in Business Marketing. He studied abroad in Northern Italy where he experienced the origins of the family’s culture and traditions. Nate has collaborated on many ideas regarding marketing implications, wine production, sales, product placement, and website design. In the beginning of his career in the wine business as a partner in Buoncristiani, he worked at other facilities in Napa including Caldwell, Rudd, and Black Stallion. These early experiences honed and mastered his cellar production skills. Nate is now employed full time for Buoncristiani Family Winery and supports many aspects of the business with a primary focus on wine sales and market visits throughout the country.