Travels from: Napa Valley, California
Expertise: Career changes, Napa Valley Cabernet Sauvignon wines, California-produced Italian white wine varietals.
Dan Petroski was born and raised in Brooklyn, New York, and has the swagger and the accent to prove it. After attending Columbia University where he played football, Dan went to work for Time, Inc. While there, he earned his MBA from NYU and worked his way up the ranks towards a promising future in magazine publishing. A good chunk of his tenure at Time was spent managing advertising clients, which involved considerable schmoozing. This is how Dan learned wine, by walking his expense account through the lists of Manhattan’s top restaurants. When the Wall Street Journal tried to poach him, Dan took a moment to reflect. Deciding a change of life was in order, he jettisoned to Sicily for a year, where he interned at Valle dell’Acate. While Dan’s intention was to return to New York to sell wine, a harvest invitation from Andy Smith at DuMOL in 2006 was too good to pass up, and Dan left the city again, this time facing west.
After harvest, Andy Smith hired Dan as Cellar Master at Larkmead. The following year, Dan was promoted to Assistant Winemaker, ultimately claiming the Larkmead Winemaker title in 2012. Before cementing his status as a Napa Valley Cabernet winemaker, in 2009 Dan launched a white wine only brand called Massican. Massican is Dan’s ode to the Mediterranean and his time spent living in Italy and drinking white wine. Dan is a gifted, instinctual winemaker, and his old world palate has guided his philosophy on wine. Dan’s approach and ability to craft wines as diverse as Cabernet Sauvignon and Tocai Friulano has earned him the recognition as San Francisco Chronicle’s Winemaker of the Year in 2017.
Awards: San Francisco Chronicle 2017 Winemaker of the Year