Meet Michele

Michele was born and raised in Taos, New Mexico, an arts community north of Dixon. After graduating from Taos High School in 1996, she studied at The School of The Art Institute of Chicago, then as a B.F.A. Theatre major at the University of Colorado at Boulder. She returned to New Mexico and in 2001 assisted Jesse, his brother Chris and his brother’s wife, Liliana, open the Vivac winery. In the fall of 2003 they opened the tasting room in Dixon. Passionate about the world of wine, she received her Sommelier Certification from the International Wine Guild in 2004, her Advanced Sommelier Certification along with several Master classes in 2005 and became an International Wine Judge in 2018. Since then she has judged at some of the most prestigious International Wine Competitions around the world. The business management partnership with her sister-in-law Liliana, allows Michele to focus on the vital external structure of the company centered on the winery’s brand development. Her skills in the wine industry allow her to develop and coordinate exciting events and partnerships, give wine history lectures and informative wine appreciation classes, craft a diverse social media presence and manage a distribution team that get the Vivac wines out into the marketplace. Michele is a freelance wine writer publishing in magazines in the USA and Europe. She was part of the editorial board and a contributor to The New Normal ebook released in 2021. Michele was also the owner and fromagere of “Kissable Cheeses” from 2014-2018. She enjoys assisting her daughter, Denali Dae, with press for the publication of her books (‘How Relative is Relativity’ available on, ‘Tumbling Down’ is soon to be released) and attending cultural events with her such as live theatre and art exhibits. Each year Michele and her family gratify their love of travel by seeking out a new adventure in a far off destination.

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