Robin Akhurst - A native of Scotland, Robin graduated from the University of Edinburgh with a degree in environmental sciences. What started as a casual interest in wine soon became a passion and following graduation, he took a job as a sommelier in one of Edinburgh’s most forward thinking wine-focused restaurants. Fate then took him to London to work for one of the city’s leading independent wine merchants, gaining additional on-the-floor experience selecting, selling and sampling wines from all over the world.
What started as a casual interest in wine, he took a job and relocated to San Jose, CA. After spending time there, another relocation to Yountville in the heart of Napa Valley changed his perceptions on food and wine forever. He would volunteer time during harvest and assist winemakers, learning more about the process while providing excellent music playlists for sorting and punch downs.
Brian’s current position is Vice President of Sales and Marketing at NAMICS Technologies Inc. He has over 15 years of experience working in the semiconductor materials market. Responsible for forecasting global requirements for advanced materials market by driving growth of disruptive technologies through development and innovation based in the Americas for global market.
In his spare time, he enjoys blending, waxing, labeling, sorting, pump overs, and punch downs. Playing guitar and vinyl records, deep sea fishing, and golf.
"Wine is the only artwork you can drink."
Brian Schmaltz - A native of San Diego, California Brian graduated from San Diego State University with BS and MS degrees in mechanical engineering with a specialization in Material Science, FEM, and MEMS processing. He then completed his Business Management Certificate in Global Commerce from University of California in San Diego.
Our Vision - It’s clear that the wine industry has continued to consolidate, and consumers are beginning to be priced out of quality wine. Premium locations are the world are sought after and price stability is nowhere in sight. Unfortunately, this even happened to us.
Originally souring Cab from Oakville our first three years, we were pushed to discover alternate locations in the valley to ensure our customers didn't feel the pinch of a three-figure bottle of wine. Yountville, St Helena, Calistoga were more than adequate locations, they turned out to be phenomenal.
Still, we continue to look for the best fruit, regardless of style to offer everyone. Our margins are razor thin, and any profit goes right back into ensuring you get the best product we can provide. There is no overhead, wholesale or restaurants accounts need not apply. This is our hobby, without direct support from each of you it would not be possible.
PHILOSOPHY - Limited each year to a different artist; a Volume, a one off, to be categorized and never to be seen again. That is until you are ready to open a piece of history, time in a bottle. We feel every vintage is a different wine entirely, thus we decided that the label artwork to be representative of that, unique for every vintage. We call on artists whose work we admire to contribute as our label, changing year to year featured on our limited numbered production.
Once they are gone, they are gone. Certain never to be repeated. Enjoy them for decades to come.
Cheers, Robin Akhurst and Brian Schmaltz.
With a desire to get closer to the agricultural aspects of winegrowing, he moved to New Zealand and received a graduate degree in viticulture and enology from Lincoln University in Christchurch. He worked two harvests in Marlborough before continuing his international winemaking road trip, working at Burgundy’s famed Domaine Leflaive and in Australia’s Barossa Valley with Two Hands Winery.
A fortunate suggestion from Michael Twelftree of Two Hands led Robin to accept a harvest position in Napa valley with Thomas Rivers Brown in 2009, working with the team at Outpost Wines on Howell Mountain. Under Thomas’s guidance, he learned to create iconic wines including Schrader Cellars, Maybach and Rivers Marie. Following harvest, Robin took a position to direct the production team at Envy Wines, a winery and custom-crush project established by partners Nils Venge and Mark Carter. For four years, Robin crafted the Envy wines and worked alongside Mike Smith as assistant winemaker for the highly lauded Carter Cellars wines.
Although free time is something Robin's not too familiar with, when he gets a chance, he enjoys spending time with his wife Aneeta, playing guitar, cycling and soaking in all of the cultural offerings provided by Bay Area living.