By Lenn Thompson, Executive Editor
Anthony Nappa, who served as winemaker at Shinn Estate Vineyards for four years, resigned on Monday. He will continue to make wine under his own label, Anthony Nappa Wines, and hope to open The Winemaker Studio with his fiancee Sara Evans over the next week or two.
Nappa also told me in an email this morning that he is looking for another winemaking job on the East End.
Nappa will be replaced by Patrick Caserta, who was announced as the winery's new production winemaker in co-owner David Page's weekly email newsletter today.
Caserta will be North Fork winery's third full-time winemaker since its first harvest in 2002. Juan Micieli-Martinez currently of Martha Clara Vineyards preceded Nappa as winemaker. Before that, Eric Fry of Lenz Winery and Roman Roth from Wolffer Estate made Shinn Estate's wines as consultants.
"We wish Anthony much success in his future endeavors. He gave us four outstanding years," Page said in the email.
Caserta (pictured left, from Facebook) is a native of Connecticut who began his studies in food and wine at The Culinary Institute of America where he received a Culinary Arts degree. After working for celebrity chefs Rocco DeSpirito and Todd English he attended California State University at Fresno and obtained degrees in Enolgy and Viticulture.
He has over 10 years of experience working in New Zealand, France and California -- including Vieux Chateau Certan/Le Pin in Bordeaux, Rudd, Verite, Cade and Plumpjack in California, and Te Mata in New Zealand.
Most recently, Caserta spent eight months working for winemaker Kareem Massoud at Paumanok Vineyards during the 2010 vintage.
"Patrick will work directly with Barbara and myself to craft wines that best express the beauty of this place where they are grown," said Page.