Joe ('Joey C'), a serial Entrepreneur was born in New York and raised in Northern New Jersey. Joe's personal career in wine and food materialized when he moved to California—mainly for a respite from East Coast winters—in 1991. After a brief immersion into the world of fine global wines, Joe took a part-time job at The Wine Club Santa Clara - the premiere wine shop in the Santa Clara Valley. Demonstrating a natural aptitude and passion for wine, Joe was promoted to full-time Italian wine buyer and assistant manager in just 18 months. He eventually left to become a founding manager of Vintage Wine Merchants in Santana Row. Ever the entrepreneur, Joe partnered with friend and colleague Michael Guerra to found Enoteca La Storia in April 2010, Enoteca La Storia San Jose (now Ancora Vino San Jose) in 2016, and Enoteca Direct (now Ancora Vino Los Gatos) in 2020.
Michael "Mike" Guerra i. Mike, who is 100% Calabrese, and a third-generation San Jose native, comes from a family rich in tradition and history in the food, wine and hospitality business. After working at the Wine Club Santa Clara and K&L Wine Merchants, Mike helped found Vintage Wine Merchants in Santana Row. More recently, Mike decided to pursue formal credentials to reflect his unique level of wine knowledge and experience. Since 2018, he has earned the following certifications:
Advanced Sommelier, Court of Master Sommeliers
Certified Italian Wine Scholar (with Highest Honors), Wine Scholar Guild
Certified Italian Wine Professional (with Honors), Italian Wine Central
Certified French Wine Scholar (with Highest Honors), Wine Scholar Guild
Certified Specialist of Wine, Society of Wine Educators
Ryan has been a part of the Enoteca family since the very beginning- his "a-ha" moment came with a bottle of 1985 Salon Champagne while working in the kitchen at Enoteca La Storia shortly after its founding. In 2012, Ryan passed the Certified Sommelier (Level 2) exam on his first attempt. From 2015 to 2020, Ryan served as the Direct to Consumer Manager at Los Gatos's own Testarossa Winery. In 2020, Ryan came back to the Enoteca family to lead the Enoteca Direct project, aimed at providing expertly curated wine selections and outstanding customer service to wine lovers both local and distant. A wine geek first and foremost, Ryan's goal is to "demystify the confusion around the world's favorite beverage," aiming to make wines of all kinds accessible to everyone.
Joe graduated from Sonoma State University with a BS in Business management in 2000 and started working in the wine industry for Enoteca la Storia shortly after receiving his level 1 sommelier credential in 2011 from the French Culinary Institute. In 2016 he received a California Wine Appellation Specialist credential through the San Francisco Wine School. Joe is our California Wine specialist and the man to talk to about what to try, where to go and who the most interesting producers are in every region. Joe is a culture builder, with both staff and clients, and has espoused the notion that wine is intended to bring people together to share time in an uncomplicated and spirited way and he knows how to throw an exceptional tasting event.