Anthony Gismondi on Wine
Wednesday, May 29 2024

Blue Grouse has a New Winemaker

By: Anthony Gismondi
Stacy Hornemann will head a number of changes at the Vancouver Island winery

Blue Grouse Estate Winery and Vineyard announced today that Stacy Hornemann will take over as lead winemaker, assuming all winemaking responsibilities for Blue Grouse and Quill brands at its Cowichan Valley estate.

Following a facility winemaking role at the Jackson family's Stonestreet Estate, led by Chris Jackson, Hornemann will continue collaborating closely with the family's second and third-generation winery owners.

"I'm grateful and excited for this opportunity to join Blue Grouse and expand my international winemaking expertise in British Columbia's Cowichan Valley," said Hornemann, who relocated to Vancouver Island from Sonoma County, California. "I look forward to continuing to build momentum for Blue Grouse, honouring its storied history and driving the Jackson family's vision of this estate forward."

Hornemann's impressive journey in winemaking began in 2012 at Trefethen Family Vineyards in Napa Valley and later at the esteemed sparkling wine house Mumm Napa. Her passion and dedication led her slightly further north up the road to St. Supéry, where she tended to the vineyards and culinary garden as the Estate Horticulturist. In 2015, she joined as an Assistant Winemaker at Materra-Cunat Family Vineyards before making a move to Sonoma and Jackson Family Wines' California operations to support its ultra-premium brands: Legacy Wines, Matanzas Creek, Windracer and Capensis.

Eventually, she moved into a long-term role as an Assistant Winemaker at Stonestreet in Sonoma County, where she notably worked on the making and releasing of the winery's first Blanc de Blancs. Nick Bevan, Executive Vice President of International Business at Jackson Family Wines, says, "Stacy's commitment to excellence is demonstrated through her impactful roles in sustainability projects, winery remodels, and the development of cutting-edge winemaking practices. We can't think of a better candidate to lead Blue Grouse into its next chapter."

 The announcement follows the winery's recent achievement of earning Biosphere Sustainable Certification and precedes several upcoming modifications at Blue Grouse. The changes include portfolio expansions featuring two Charme de L'Île offerings and additions to its Reserve wine tier, an updated packaging refresh, and the launch of a new sparkling wine experience in partnership with Unsworth Vineyards, set to debut on June 19, 2024.

Written By: ag
Anthony Gismondi
Anthony Gismondi

Anthony Gismondi is a Canadian wine journalist and one of North America's most influential voices in wine. For over 30 years, he has been the wine columnist for The Vancouver Sun. The twice-weekly column is distributed across Canada through the Postmedia Network to millions of readers. In addition, Anthony hosts the BC Food & Wine Radio Show, broadcast in 25 markets across B.C. and available as a podcast on major platforms. He launched Gismondionwine.com in 1997, attracting one million monthly users from 114 countries. It continues to be a valuable resource full of tasting notes, intelligent wine stories and videos for the trade and consumers. Conversations with wine personalities are available on his  YouTube Channel.