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MEET THE INDUSTRIOUS VINTNERS PIONEERING A BETTER TOMORROW
Oscar Llamas was born in Guadalajara, Jalisco, Mexico and originates from a migrant farm worker family. He traveled the circuit with his family traveling from California, to Washington, then Oregon. He settled in the Napa Valley in the early 1990's and has been the owner of an automotive shop for over 20 years. He has always had an entrepreneurial spirit and his upbringing as a farm worker cultivated an interest in agriculture. With so many family members working in the various aspects of the wine industry, a natural progression was for him to pursue one of many goals, making his own wine. He wanted to acknowledge their efforts and in 2009 started the Llamas Family label. He enjoys working with his wife and nephew and looks forward to leaving a legacy for his family. He loves traveling, cooking and watching sports.
Lola Llamas is a Napa Valley native, born in St. Helena, California. Her grandfather, John Torres worked in the vineyards for over 40 years and was a master at grafting. He taught many others this skill while at Beaulieu Vineyard and Trefethen Vineyards. Lola has worked in the legal industry for over 20 years and currently works as a paralegal for a litigation firm. She received her Bachelor’s degree in business from St. Mary’s College. She is part of the Executive MBA program focusing on the wine business at Sonoma State University and anticipates graduating in August 2017. She enjoys her studies and learning all that she can about the wine industry. She looks forward to traveling abroad in March 2017 to the wine regions of France and South Africa where she will work on consulting projects. She is excited to be part of a new industry and looks forward to having a role in this venture with her husband, Oscar whom she met when she was 13 years old. In her free time Lola enjoys traveling, spending time with her family, running, and taking fitness classes.
Alex grew up in the fields. As migrant workers, his parents followed the same route each year, travelling with their children and a troop of assorted family members from outside the city of Guadalajara, Jalisco in Mexico all the way to Portland, Oregon and back. Along the way, they would harvest fields, orchards and vineyards – everything from Thompson Seedless and Concord grapes in the Coachella Valley to pears in Fairfield, California to cherries in Oregon and olives in Corning, California. Although only a child, Alex, like many migrant children, worked side by side with his parents before and after school. His early exposure to the cultivation of crops helped to instill a sense of connection to the land.
When Alex’s family finally settled in Napa, his father and many of his uncles took jobs working the vineyards of Napa Valley – ultimately planting and managing the first acres of what would later become the famed Stagecoach Vineyard which they still oversee today. Alex continued to work alongside and learned firsthand the meaning of terroir and the effect of the environment and management practices on winegrape quality.
Driven to take his experience in the fields a step further, Alex began exploring the world of wine and developed a love for fine dining. Working at restaurants such as The French Laundry and Per Se, Alex learned the importance of precision, care and detail and was exposed to some of the great wines of the world. His passion for wine ignited, Alex decided to pursue his own winemaking venture, honoring his heritage by exclusively sourcing grapes from vineyards farmed by his family. In his free time, Alex can be found fishing; hanging out with Chapala, his beautiful Blue Heeler; cooking gourmet meals for his wife, Michelle; and drinking incredible wines!