Wine Star: Cristie Kerr

The pro golf legend turned vintner is excited to grow her Napa Valley brand

Wine Star: Cristie Kerr
Cristie Kerr wore a bright pink suit to the Wine Experience in honor of Breast Cancer Awareness Month. (Rick Wenner)
Oct 25, 2021

Cristie Kerr started golfing as a child, and her passion for it grew into a long and distinguished career as a professional. But, as she explained to the 2021 Wine Experience audience, golf wouldn’t remain her only passion. “I was bitten by another bug, called the wine bug,” said Kerr, the subject of Wine Spectator’s Oct. 15, 2021, issue cover story. “Lightning had struck twice.”

As golf brought her around the world, Kerr explored wine regions near and far, but California’s Napa Valley called to her. “Every time I went, it felt like I was coming home,” she said, wearing a bright pink suit in honor of Breast Cancer Awareness Month. Kerr talked about meeting Pride Mountain Vineyards’ Suzanne Pride Bryan in 2008 and launching Curvature Wines to benefit breast cancer research, and how she and her husband, Erik Stevens, were stunned by Curvature’s success. Kerr and Stevens founded Kerr Cellars in 2013 with winemaker Helen Keplinger. “We knew we were on the right path,” Kerr recalled.

The relationships she has formed since joining the wine industry are some of the most gratifying parts of the job. “The best times in my career are when I have been able to be a part of a team,” she said. “Now I get to be a part of that team every single day.”

On this occasion of Kerr’s second Wine Star turn, she shared her team’s success in the form of a glass of Kerr Cabernet Sauvignon Napa Valley Wappo Vineyard 2018 (93 points, $150). “We want to keep doing what we’re doing,” she said. “Because we’re obviously doing something right!”

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