A Colombian-born, French-trained Winemaker brings to life her Cattleya Wines in California.
Wines evolved from Bibiana’s desire to add soul and character as unique representations of terroir.
Cattleya Wines: Purity, power and finesse.
Bibiana González Rave is the founder and winemaker of Cattleya Wines. Born and raised in Colombia and trained as a winemaker in France, she moved to California in 2007 to settle into making extraordinary wines.
In her words: Since my early teenage years, my dream has been to make wine.
At a very young age I was fortunate enough to begin learning how to make wine in France. I trained myself while working with some amazing winemakers who showed me the importance of loving the land, how to respect the farming itself, and to focus on the many details that go into making each drop of wine in each and every bottle.
While studying in Bordeaux and Cognac I learned the required viticulture, enology and microbiology (“wine science”); but most importantly, I was also exposed to the many rituals involved in winemaking–things like pruning, harvesting and bottling–that feel so special and meaningful each season. I told myself that one day a bottle of wine would be infused with the longings of my soul through fruit produced from a specific terroir that spoke to my heart. That place I have found.
Jim Laube described Bibiana’s evolving career accurately when he wrote:
“It’s been a hectic pace for the energetic Rave, who first considered making wine as a 14-year-old, and later attempted to make some in a 5-gallon glass jar in her bedroom closet. That experiment failed, yet she was determined to pursue winemaking. After studying chemical engineering and business in Colombia she moved to France, where she obtained a degree in viticulture and a Diplôme National d’Œnologue from the University of Bordeaux while working five harvests.”
He follows with her winemaking experiences in France and her work in California:
“While in France she worked in Côte-Rôtie (Domaine Michelle & Stéphane Ogier and Domaine Clusel-Roch), Alsace (Domaine du Scheidecker), Burgundy (Domaine Du Devevey), Cognac (Lycée Agricole de L’Oisellerie) and Bordeaux (Château Haut-Brion, Château La Mission Haut-Brion and Château La Dominique).
“In 2004, she moved to Sonoma, yet she was still on the go. She worked harvests in South Africa at Saronsberg Cellars as well as in California and France, working six harvests in three years at one point. In California she worked at La Crema, Peay Vineyards, Au Bon Climat and Qupé before Lynmar, where she was winemaker from 2009 through 2011.
“Since leaving Lynmar in 2011, Rave has been a whirlwind of activity. She started her own vineyard and winery-consulting business, Rave Vines & Wines, produced a handful of wines under her own label, Cattleya, married Jeff Pisoni of the Pisoni Vineyard family, formed a winery with him called Shared Notes, secured new grape sources for her wines and signed on as winemaker for Jayson Pahlmeyer’s Sonoma Coast Pinot and Chardonnay project. It’s named after Wayfarer Ranch, which Pahlmeyer owns, located in a remote part of the Fort Ross-Seaview appellation. Rave is overseeing both the vineyard and winemaking. In 2016, her role at Pahlmeyer was expanded across all of the Napa Valley and Pahlmeyer winemaking.
“Now that Rave’s Sonoma roots are growing deeper with four labels, Cattleya, Wayfarer, Shared Notes, and now, Pahlmeyer, her globetrotting days—which she described as ‘. . . exhausting and challenging. . .’ —might be behind her, but she’s amassed enough global winery experience to last a lifetime.”