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The Hudson Team

A thousand pairs of hands make Hudson Ranch, Vineyards and Wines the diverse farm it is today. Each member of our team, many of whom have worked with us since we started nearly thirty-five years ago, is employed year-round, as their special talents are necessary in farming Hudson Ranch all twelve months of the year.

The work is daily and very demanding, requiring great skill and depth of knowledge. Pruning the vineyards in winter, growing our fruits and vegetables (as well as one of the largest pumpkins grown in the state!) in summer, picking our grapes and pressing our olive oil in late autumn, and tending to growth in the vineyards and gardens in spring, the seasons of a farm are ceaseless and always unique. Each of this work is exacting and each member of Hudson Ranch and Vineyards is integral to the productivity of our endeavors in the vineyards, fields, and farm.

Lee Hudson

Owner

The peaceful, bucolic setting of Hudson Ranch belies the energy, intensity and passion of proprietor Lee Hudson. Foresight and extraordinary diligence transformed the land into today’s highly esteemed vineyard. Born and raised in Houston, Texas, Lee received his B.S. in Horticulture at the University of Arizona. He then worked with the esteemed Jacques Seysses of Domaine Dujac, in Morey St. Denis, Burgundy; learning that great grapes from hallowed vineyard sites produce truly world class, fine wines. Lee returned to the States to continue his graduate studies in viticulture and enology at University of California at Davis, where many of his classmates are now his clients. Lee searched for property from Santa Barbara to Mendocino, before deciding on the Carneros property in Napa Valley, founding Hudson Vineyards in 1981.

Cristina SP Hudson

Owner

Cristina Salas-Porras Hudson developed her discerning eye through a distinguished, twenty-five year career in the interrelated disciplines of food and wine, hospitality, and design. After working alongside Alice Waters of Chez Panisse for ten years, Cristina consulted for Hermes, Slow Food International, Steve Jobs, and Rockfield Japan. Her talents and experience are now integral to her work with her husband, Lee, at Hudson Ranch and Vineyards, as well as overseeing their Napa Valley-based business, Hudson Greens & Goods. A native Texan from El Paso, Cristina received her BA in East Asian Studies from Middlebury College in Vermont, and a graduate degree in Japanese from Keio University in Japan. She helped to open the renowned Park Hyatt Hotel in Tokyo, and the art-driven Bardessono Hotel in Yountville, California, as well as co-founding O Olive Oil Company. Along with Lee and their children, Cristina is happiest gathering friends and family around her dining table.

Clayton Kirchhoff

Winemaker

Clayton comes to Hudson as a young Winemaker with 12 years of winery experience and an innate skill at crafting wines of presence. Clayton was born in Nebraska and spent time in both Nebraska and rural California as a child. Following a BA in Business Economics at UC Santa Barbara, and a semester spent abroad in Italy, Clayton soon figured out that wine would be his life’s endeavor. He is largely self-taught in winemaking, and has benefited from mentorships with some of the best winemakers in Napa Valley and beyond. Over the last 6 years Clayton has become familiar with the vineyard sites at Hudson Ranch and aims to be a steward to the wines.

Marissa Sanchez

Estate Manager

Marissa worked as a culinary consultant in NYC’s restaurant and hospitality industry for over 20 years. She grew up and worked within a family of well -known chefs & restaurateurs, step mother Zarela Martinez and brother Aaron Sanchez in an environment deeply immersed in food, culture and hospitality continually entertaining guests both in their restaurants and homes. In 2014, she relocated to the Napa Valley to begin working as Estate Manager. Her background and experience with food, wine and hospitality has come full circle at Hudson welcoming guests, and overseeing events both small and large. Her Texas roots coupled with her big heart & hospitality make her a great asset to the team.

Skip Karabian

Brand Director

Skip Karabian grew up in the San Francisco Bay Area in the heart of Silicon Valley. After graduating from the University of California at Davis, Skip embarked on a career in agriculture & wine. After five years farming vineyards and learning viticulture, in 2000, Skip moved to the Napa Valley and started his career in the sales and marketing of boutique wines. Skip has been fortunate enough to work with such brands as; Schramsberg, Fisher, Silverado Vineyards, Duckhorn, Regusci, T-Vine, and Tank Garage. In early 2018, a new opportunity presented itself at Hudson Ranch, a chance to work with Lee and Cristina Hudson and be a part of the next phase of their Napa Ranch. Skip lives in Napa with his wife Mollie and their two children.

Miguel Figueroa

Foreman

Miguel is the foreman and is responsible for supervising the vineyard crew. Originally from Guanajuato Mexico, Miguel came to Napa at age 18 and was employed at Hudson soon after. His attention to detail and commitment to high quality grape growing has proven invaluable.

Leonardo Urena

Production Manager

Leonardo is the production manager and is responsible for supervising the garden, landscaping and livestock crews. Leonardo is one of the longest employees at Hudson having been here over 30 years. Not only is he known for growing beautiful, delicious vegetables, he is also a renowned pumpkin grower.

Kelly Macleod

Director of Vineyard Operations

Director of Vineyard Operations since 2008. Kelly oversees the farming, grower –winery relations and daily operations of the 200 acres of vineyard. Her focus is on sustainable farming for high quality, site-driven fruit. Originally from the East Coast, she studied environmental science at Kenyon College. She is rarely seen around the ranch without her dog, Cricket.