At the helm of Sullivan Rutherford Estate since early 2018, Juan Pablo Torres-Padilla has a vision – to establish the most professional and wine-passionate team in pursuit of crafting the next ‘first growth’ wine from Napa Valley. Building on the 40-plus year foundation established by the original founder of the Estate he now owns, Torres-Padilla is determined to meld Sullivan’s rich history with both incremental and broad updates to the property to make it one of Napa Valley’s next iconic estates featuring state-of-the-art winemaking and world- class hospitality experiences. Born and raised in Mexico City, Torres-Padilla was introduced as a teen to the Burgundies and Bordeaux wines beloved by his maternal grandfather. His passion for wine flourished further during the 15 years he lived and studied in Paris where he earned a master’s degree in engineering and economics at France’s École Polytechnique, during which time he also made hundreds of visits to Burgundy, Champagne and Bordeaux, occasionally working harvests in the vineyard or cellar.
After earning a master’s degree in the fields of policy, business, and technology from MIT, Boston, he returned to Paris to work in telecommunications, but the wine bug had bitten. He and his Mexico-based uncle began to search for a vineyard to purchase in Burgundy or Bordeaux until their attention turned to the Napa Valley. Said Torres-Padilla, “Not only did I fall in love with Napa as I started visiting more frequently, but also I’m convinced that no other place in the world can match Napa Valley’s combination of history, world-class winemaking technology and infrastructure, pioneering spirit and leadership, and of course the American fervor for entrepreneurship, disruptive innovation, and ambition.
Article By: Fran Miller