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Short and simple: I have a new job



At 6:30 a.m. Pacific time today, this announcement went out from Jackson Family Wines:


 Veteran wine writer, blogger and critic will specialize in communications and education for family’s expanding portfolio

 Sonoma County, CA (MARCH 10, 2014) – Jackson Family Wines is pleased to announce the hiring of Steve Heimoff as Director, Wine Communications & Education.

 Heimoff’s responsibilities will include working with the company’s communications, PR, digital/social media and brand marketing teams in all aspects of content generation, consumer engagement and trade support.

 “I’m truly honored that Jackson Family Wines has entrusted me with this unique position,” Heimoff said. “I was a huge admirer of Jess Jackson and Barbara Banke, not only professionally for their tremendous accomplishments, but personally. Jackson Family Wines is, simply put, the most superb portfolio of high-end wineries in America and I’m thrilled to now work for the family business.”

Heimoff joins Jackson Family Wines after 22 years at Wine Enthusiast Magazine, most of them as California Editor. Previously, Heimoff wrote for Wine Spectator Magazine. Born in New York City, Heimoff moved to San Francisco in 1979 to attend graduate school and it was there that he discovered and nurtured his passion for wine.

 Heimoff has written two books for University of California Press: A Wine Journey along the Russian River, and New Classic Winemakers of California: Conversations with Steve Heimoff. In addition, his daily wine blog,, is one of the most widely read in the country.

* * *

After twenty-five years as a wine critic, I’m onto my next big adventure.

I’m sure I’ll have a lot more to say in the coming days and weeks. Right now, the reality of my new tasks hasn’t really set in. One thing I do want to do is reassure my readers that I intend to keep this blog going five days a week, just as I have for nearly six years.

I fully understand the challenges inherent in this goal I set myself. And I expect my readers to say to me: Prove it. I’ll try and give it my level best. I love this blog–I love the interaction I have with so many of you who faithfully read it everyday, and occasionally take the time to comment–I have no intention of squandering the trust you invest in me. I will endeavor to keep an independent, interesting voice, just as I did all those years with Wine Enthusiast. I’m simply (and happily) changing employers; this blog abides.

Thank you.

  1. Steve:

    Congratulations on the new gig. Should be a very interesting next step for you.

  2. Congrats, Steve! Good luck and enjoy the new adventure!

  3. Jose and I are so happy for you. The world just became your oyster. This is such a great company, having also spent time in their employ… You got the dream job!

  4. GrapesRGreat says:

    Congratulations Steve and good luck on your next step.

  5. Congratulations, Steve. I know you have been a firm believer in the quality of the Jackson Portfolio for a long time. This looks to be a great fit for both of you. Funny, people on the North Coast thought they felt an earthquake last night. Must of have been you drafting this post. 🙂

  6. Chris Slaughter says:

    Congratulations Steve on this fantastic new direction. All change is good! All the best to you!!

  7. Congrats, Steve. Now, continue to communicate and educate!

  8. Congrats Steve!

    Sorry I could not get this into today’s News Fetch.

    I never received the release from Jackson and today’s edition went out before you posted.

  9. Bradley Cooper says:

    Congrats, Steve. Hope your transition is smooth and fruitful!

  10. Congrats on the new gig!

  11. Steve,

    Congratulations, great company to work for. Now that you’ll soon have a T&E budget, I am open for lunches on Tuesdays and Thursdays….

    Hope you and Gus have a blast, it is great to shake things up once in a while!

  12. Well done, my man!

  13. Congratulations, Steve!

  14. Mark Malpiede says:

    Congratulations Steve! Looking forward to seeing you on this side of the fence.

  15. Steve,

    A hearty congratulations on your new position. It will be fun to watch you work this side of the wine industry. All the best in your new career past. Its never too late to change directions and seek new challenges. Does this new job now make Gus an official “winery dog”?

  16. Heartiest congratulations Steve. Awesome to shake things up like that. JFE is one of the incubators of great talent in this biz and many of the top people in this biz have roots there. They did well.

  17. Steve–Congratulations! Jackson Family Wines is a wonderful company with a lot of solid wines. I have worked for them for the past seven months and am very happy! I am sure you will be too! Good luck on your new adventure!

  18. Congrats Steve… hopefully this doesn’t change your commute too much.

  19. Dave Cole says:

    Congratulations! Looking forward to watching the next steps in your career.

  20. Congratulations Steve. I wish you success and happiness in your new position

  21. Kelly Keagy says:

    Congratulations Steve! It is a wonderful portfolio of wines to work with you’ll have fun!

  22. Kelly Keagy says:

    Congratulations Steve! It is a wonderful portfolio of wines to work with you’ll have fun! Wishing you the best.

  23. Felicitations!

    I look forward to seeing Gus as September or July in the next Winery Dogs calendar (I know he was the real reason you made the move)!

  24. Christopher O'Gorman says:

    Congratulations Steve. Wishing you the best in your new position with the great folks at KJ.

  25. Caroline Shaw says:

    Welcome to the family Steve. It’s going to be quite an adventure! Caroline

  26. STEVE!

    Is the next post all about monetizing your blog?

    Congratulations! Now you get to harangue wine critics when KJ wines don’t get the scores they want.

    I think all of your fans are thrilled for you. And KJ will be thrilled with you.

  27. Christopher says:

    Congratulations on your new role, and best of luck to you!

  28. Dear amazing Caroline, thank you.

  29. Dear Hosemaster, thanks. Getting to know you has been a real highlight for me.

  30. Congrats, Steve…… I’m sure you will excel in this position like you did at WE… I will miss your palate…Good Luck!

  31. Keasling says:

    Congrats Steve. KJ gets a great asset.

  32. What a great opportunity for you–congratulations! Jackson Family Wines are very lucky to have added you to their already excellent team. I wish you all success and satisfaction at your new post. All best,

  33. Sao Anash says:

    Congratulations, Steve. You and Gus will be the toast of Santa Rosa!

  34. Thanks Sao. You are a big part of my professional life and your support means a lot.

  35. Steve,

    Though we’ve never met, and you don’t even know me, I want to add my voice to those wishing you well on the new adventure. There are many like me, who read your work with interest and admiration, and hope to continue to do so in the future.

    …and a big belly rub to Gus!


  36. Congratulations Steve, hope you’ll take it upon yourself to educate your tribe on the Oregon properties KJ recently purchased and the rationale for doing so. Rt

  37. Steve;
    Been there, done that!!! What possessed you? (kidding)
    So if you want some thoughts from someone who has some experience and just to catch up, be happy to talk…Off to Madeira, Porto and Jerez in two weeks.
    Best of Luck, and BTW you should know that Jackson Family Estates is now a key supporter of the Institute, so maybe we can develop some interesting “Master” classes for N. America with you guys-let’s talk.

  38. Joel: Awesome to hear from you. It would be an honor to work with you again.

  39. Dear Michael Graves, in a way, hearing from someone I don’t know is even more touching than support from my friends and family! Thank you very much. I hope to continue to merit your trust.

  40. Rick Kushman says:

    Yaay, Steve. You are one of the hardest working, most well-intentioned people I know in this business. It’s always great fun to run into you at stuff, and I hope that’ll continue. Jackson Family Wines has made a stellar choice, and I’m so happy to hear you’ll finally have, you know, a real paycheck. All the best, my friend.

  41. Carol Reber says:

    Dear Steve,

    Thank you for being such a terrific Duckhorn supporter over the years while at Wine Enthusiast. You made a terrific choice in JFE and they in you. You make the North American wine world better. Wishing you all the best in your new endeavor.

    P.S. I hope they’re paying you a boatload!

  42. Hey Rick! It’s been too long. We’ve got to get together soon!

  43. Congratulations, Steve, to you and to Jackson Family Wines!

    Everybody wins!

  44. Congrats, Steve!! We should collaborate on a post for our blog.

    Kris Mulkey
    Director of Influencer Marketing

  45. Very best wishes to you in your new position Steve!

  46. Congratulations Steve. Wishing you much success in your new endeavor.

  47. Margie Healy says:


    Congratulations … All the best as you transition to Jackson Family.

    Thanks for keeping us informed and amused over the years.

  48. #soeffencool

  49. Congratulations! I’m glad for you and glad the blog isn’t going anywhere–I enjoy it very much! Although I know you’ve spent much time here, “Welcome to the Russian River Valley.”


  1. Sometimes The Early Bird Misses The Worm | Wine Industry Insight - […] wretch to Director, Wine Communications & Education at Jackson Family Wines. See Short and simple: I have a new…

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