The best wines are made both in the vineyard and in the winery.
Growing up in Hawaii, Shaun Kajiwara worked in his family’s tropical fruit tree orchard, learning pruning and grafting techniques, and selling avocados and bananas he helped to harvest. With this connection to farming, he quickly fell in love with viticulture, working harvests at several Jackson family properties over the past decade-plus. For Shaun, wine is always about the vineyard first.
During his time at both Stonestreet Winery in Sonoma County and Yangarra Estate in McLaren Vale, Australia, Shaun worked as a field worker, scout, and tractor driver before progressing into vineyard management, learning from great mentors along the way. He also met and married Katie Jackson, who focuses on the company’s sustainability initiatives.
As a Vineyard Director for Jackson Family Wines, Shaun particularly focuses on growing Pinot Noir and Chardonnay in the family’s cool-climate vineyard sites throughout the Anderson Valley, Sonoma Coast, and Russian River Valley. “The foundation of acquiring great vineyard sites and farming these vineyards to a high standard is the reason why we can produce such high-quality wines,” he says.
Shaun lives in Sonoma County with his wife, Katherine Jackson, and their three young children. He holds a Bachelor of Science in biochemistry from the University of Washington.