Chris Indelicato leads the third generation of family management at Delicato Family Vineyards, one of the country’s fastest growing wineries consistently recognized for its strides in product innovation and category leadership. With more than a decade of experience as President and CEO of the family-owned business and over 90 years of California winemaking and grape growing heritage, Chris oversees the winery’s strategic direction, company culture and commitment to sustainability.
Born and raised in Manteca, California where his grandfather, Gaspare Indelicato broke ground on the family’s first vineyards in 1924, Chris was not simply exposed to, but was ingrained in the art and business of making wine since day one. A child of the vines, he spent his pre-adolescent and teenage years alongside his father and uncles harvesting, crushing, bottling and even pouring behind the counter of the family’s tasting room.
Chris went on to earn a Bachelor of Science degree at the University of Southern California in Los Angeles where he quickly launched his post-graduate career as a licensed Certified Public Accountant. Chris’s time in the financial field provided invaluable experience and a renewed interest in returning to the family business. Convinced there was significant opportunity yet to be tapped, Chris returned to Delicato Family Vineyards in 1994 and went to work. Initially spending time alongside his brother, Jay on the viticulture and winery operations side, Chris continued his evolution within the company as the National Accounts Manager, followed by responsibility as Chief Financial Officer. Following years of research, experience, relationship building and an unwavering passion for continuing his family legacy, Chris assumed the role as President and CEO in 2004.
Under the leadership and vision of Chris, Delicato Family Vineyards has grown to rank among the top 10 wineries in the United States in volume with an annual production exceeding 7 million cases. For the last three years, with Chris at the helm, Delicato Family Vineyards has driven the third largest amount of revenue growth in the wine industry. Named Wine Enthusiast magazine’s 2011 “American Man of the Year” for his outstanding achievement in innovation, distinctive brand positioning and big picture thinking, Chris has led the successful launch and long term, national and international success of brands like Gnarly Head, Noble Vines and Bota Box. Today, Chris is as focused as ever. With prestige brands like Black Stallion Estate Winery in Napa Valley and groundbreaking entries like Belle Ambiance, the Delicato Family Vineyards portfolio continues to outperform the competition and over deliver on meeting the needs of the modern wine consumer.
Chris proudly serves as Vice President of the Winegrowers of Napa County, as well as Secretary of The Wine Institute, the public policy advocacy association representing nearly 1,000 California wineries. Most importantly, he is the proud father of two children, son Borja and daughter Caterina. Chris and wife, Maché make their home in Napa.