We're a small operation with a friendly and devoted team behind everything that we do.
Kyle is responsible for the winemaking and overall operation of Coterie. This includes a focus on non-interventional practices at the winery and a dedication to vineyards under exceptional care. Kyle's interest in food and wine took root early in life while foraging for crawfish, thistles, and other tasty morsels with his grandparents. "It's likely one of the reasons that I'm still fascinated by whatever is growing around me." His love of wine also comes from its community. "Wine lovers don't drink wine by themselves; they love to share it. I like to think about the life of a wine like that the special place where each bottle may end up." Kyle is a science graduate from Purdue University. He also has some formal education in viticulture and enology from UC Davis; however, his approach to winemaking is more natural than technical.
If you see a detail that you like in our tasting room or at one of our events, chances are that Shala had something to do with it. Shala loves design and the beauty of art, food, and wine. Born and raised in California for most of her life, she is especially drawn to the diverse people, cultures, landscape, and microclimates that Californians enjoy. Shala has also lived with her family in Italy. Her grandfather was a cooper (barrel maker), and her family in the north still has vineyards in Piemonte, where Shala and Kyle have enjoyed regular visits and the rural beauty of hunting truffles. Shala and Kyle have a young son, Julian, who loves the grapes at harvest.
Eli has been with us from the beginning. During that time he has done many, many things, but his main role always has been assisting in the winemaking activities, especially at harvest. (Have we mentioned that winemaking is 80% cleaning?) This can mean some very early mornings and very late nights not to mention some late nights that turn into very early mornings. Eli is Shala's father, so he truly injects even more "family" into our family operation. Eli has seen firsthand the pains and triumphs of building a successful small winery from the ground up. But no matter what the issue or time of night, he's always ready with a smile and positive outlook.
Piya brings a range of talents to our winemaking team stemming from a deeply rooted excitement around wine, a keenly focused palate, an attention to detail with winery operations, and multiple degrees in the biological sciences. Previously Piya worked for City Winery and has also spent time in the vineyard. So she knows her way around both wines and vines, whether in the city or countryside. Having lived in numerous parts of the world and having traveled to many others, we love her tastes and experiences across many cultures. In addition to her time assisting with winemaking, you'll often see Piya at events and sharing our wines in the tasting room.
Veronica first got to know us at Coterie as a winery member, but our relationship has grown only closer. Veronica joined our team after her husband David, our longtime friend and advocate who sadly passed away suddenly in 2020, had worked with us for years. They were an especially convivial pair behind the counter. While David captivated you with the wines, Veronica was, and continues to be, the picture of perfection at handling your orders with gracious efficiency and taking care of you as a winery member.
After years of all types of work around the winery, Sam spends less time with us now due to a full-time position with another winery. However, at times we still get the benefits of her presence, while perpetually feeling her spirit. Bottling days, for example, are always a time for extra hands and causes for celebration among all members of our team, whether past or present. Sam has a biochemistry background from school, which still fuels her curiosity with fascinating things like mineral collecting and foraging as a certified mushroom hunter. Her experiences in hospitality and wine are impressive, where she has worked far and wide from South Carolina to California.
A small group with shared interests or tastes.
Since 2007, Coterie has produced wines from tiny parcels within acclaimed vineyards that express the distinction of their place. We make every wine berry to bottle by hand with exceptional care in the vineyard and non-interventional practices at the winery. The winery is nestled in a cozy neighborhood near downtown San Jose, where it transformed an old warehouse into a beautiful place for wine.