Stephen Johnsen, Associate Winemaker
Before ‘Zeke’ began his relationship with Unionville as a consumer in 1993 when the winery opened, he attended Montclair State for Graphic Arts & Photography. During those years his interest and love for wine was nurtured through various wine clubs such as Bruce Cass’s “Winewrights Register” organization. Desiring to learn more and get involved in the wine industry, he volunteered for Unionville at festivals in 1998, and later was offered a position in the tasting room. Cameron Stark, winemaker at the time, offered him a position in 2006 to join him on the production team as Assistant Winemaker. Considering the fortuity to be tutored under Cameron, he saw it as an opportunity too good to pass up, and started his wine making career and never looked back. The art of crafting wine and the enjoyment of food & wine are Zeke’s passions, but he also loves to spend time going to museums, small concerts or just jamming with his friends.
Conor Quilty, Associate Winemaker
While studying Botany at Connecticut College and furthering his oenology education through UC Davis, Conor honed his focus to look at wine from a bottom to bottle perspective. This led him to viticultural experiences in both the Alexander Mountains and Sonoma Valley before moving into wine production, working harvests with Stonestreet Winery in California and Yangarra Estate Vineyards and Hickinbotham Wines in South Australia. Conor joined the Unionville team in 2016 to pursue his dream of making wine on the East Coast and immersing himself in the challenges of growing a vineyard in an up-and-coming market. At Unionville, Conor works closely with both the winemaking and vineyard teams, to ensure you enjoy drinking the wine as much as he enjoys coming to work each day.
John Cifelli, CS- General Manager
John is a 15 year veteran of the New Jersey food, beverage, and hospitality industries. John combines his passions for world-class hospitality and fine wines to define Unionville as a benchmark for East Coast wine production. John held management roles at New Jersey dining landmarks The Stockton Inn and Blue Morel. John is on his second tour of duty at Unionville, with a two year stint as the Executive Director of the Garden State Wine Growers Association in between. Besides focusing on business development, marketing, and guest experience at Unionville, John also currently serves as the Executive Director of The Winemakers Co-Op. John is a certified sommelier through the Court of Master Sommeliers, and hosts a monthly wine tasting club at the winery. He lives in Hunterdon County with his family of ardent Rutgers Scarlet Knights.
Cameron Stark, Consulting Winemaker
Cam Stark made terroir wine at Unionville as Winemaker and General Manager for over ten years. Prior, he made wine in Napa Valley, producing 90+ point wines in Wine Enthusiast for Robert Sinskey Cellars and Merryvale Vineyards. Now an owner at Jersey Cider Works in Asbury, NJ, Cam visits Unionville regularly to lead the blending trials, and guides the production process from vine to bottle.
Alvaro Cruz, Vineyard Manager
Alvaro Cruz has worked in the Bucks/Hunterdon County food production industry for over 5 years. After tending to our vines part time as a member of our vineyard team since 2015, Alvaro was promoted to Vineyard Manager before the growing season in 2016. Alvaro is in charge of all operations in the vineyard, from winter pruning, to maintaining healthy vine balance during the growing season, to managing harvest of over 100 tons of grapes annually.
Tiffany Baldino, Tasting Room Manager
After studying Culinary Arts at Mercer County Community College and Nutritional Science at Rutgers University, it was only natural that she began a career in the local farm to table food scene. With a background including farming, running her own meal delivery service, kitchen management, recipe development and farm to restaurant & school sales, she brings a wealth of experience. Unionville, with its estate farm history attracted her, and she couldn’t wait to sink her teeth into the local wine industry. Tiffany manages the tasting room, farm markets, and wine clubs at Unionville. In her free time she enjoys hiking with her family which includes her husband, son and rescue dog.
Jackie Dezic, Events Manager
Jackie studied Hospitality Management at Fairleigh Dickinson University where she discovered her true passion for event planning. During her time at college she had the opportunity to study abroad for a semester in England as well as spend a week in Switzerland learning about the culture. Jackie loves to travel in her spare time and is always looking for a new adventure. Her favorite part about event planning is the ability to see someone’s vision and bring it to life for them. Her attention to detail along with an approachable and easy going attitude makes for a seamless process when planning your special day.
Stephen Ruffin, Off Premise Sales
After 30 years or working in banking and property management, Stephen decided it was time to make a career change into something he loved; wine. Stephen is a Culinary Institute of America grad and a level 3 Sommelier through the International Sommelier Guild. He also has obtained certificates in Enology and Viticulture through Washington State University. Stephen recently relocated to the Delaware River valley with a mission to work at a winery. After an extensive search, he found Unionville Vineyards and wines that he is proud to represent.
Carl Lump, Sales Representative
Retired from a career in key account management, marketing and sales in the semiconductor industry and is an alumnus of Drexel College and Rider University. He’s traveled extensively in Europe and Asia and is a self-proclaimed foodie, as well as an avid wine aficionado. His wine passion has taken him to Napa, Sonoma, Oregon, the Mosel & Franken areas of Germany, and Marlborough, New Zealand. Carl works in the tasting room, interfaces with local B&B’s and takes care of some UV wholesale and outlet accounts. He’s happy to recommend local restaurants as well as eateries in his hometown of Philadelphia. He resides in East Amwell, happily calling being a neighbor of Unionville.
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