Our People

“It takes a dedicated team to make it work.”

Sales & Marketing:

Steve Lister
Wholesale Sales Manager

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Steve Lister joined the JUSTIN family of wines on Sept. 1st, 1999. Steve is a native of California. Prior to working for JUSTIN Winery, he worked for Beringer Wine Estates and The Chalone Wine Group. Justin first met Steve while working in Santa Barbara. At that time he was working for three distributors representing several high profile wineries including JUSTIN.

Here at JUSTIN Steve calls on several different markets including California, Florida, Texas and Northern Nevada. His primary responsibility is sales and marketing, he works closely with our wholesalers directly in California and with San Francisco Wine Exchange sales representatives in his other markets. He travels extensively promoting new releases and working with sales representatives in each of his markets.

The entire sales and marketing team feel that education is the most successful approach to selling JUSTIN wines. All of us here at JUSTIN Winery are proud of our wines and want to share them with you. In fact, we have gone as far as to open our own restaurant, Deborah's Room where our executive chef prepares a different menu every evening; a four course dinner featuring only the finest local ingredients while each course is paired with a different handcrafted wine from our estate vineyard.

If you would like information on where to purchase JUSTIN wines in your area contact Steve, he can recommend several locations.

To reach Steve Lister, stevelister@JUSTINwine.com

Joseph Spellman
Mid-West Regional Sales Manager/Master Sommelier

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Joseph Spellman, MS is Winery Sommelier for JUSTIN Vineyards and Winery. He has worked with wine since 1979, principally as a sommelier, in Chicago’s top restaurant cellars, including Tango, Maxim’s, The Pump Room, The Park Hyatt Hotel, and Charlie Trotter’s. He has also had stints in wine retail, wholesale, and importing companies, as well as the Napa Valley producer Joseph Phelps. He has been a leading wine educator, writer, and consultant, and has led wine seminars in the US, UK, Japan, and Australia.

Joseph earned the prestigious Master Sommelier Diploma in 1996, held now by 85 Americans, and 140 individuals worldwide. He is a frequent instructor and examiner in the Court of Master Sommeliers, and in 2005 was elected Chairman of the American Chapter of the Court. He has also passed the difficult Certified Wine Educator Examination, in 2003, and has studied for the Master of Wine Diploma with its top instructors.

Another rare achievement was winning the 1997 French Sommelier Competition in Paris sponsored by SOPEXA, and the title “Best Sommelier in the World in French Wines and Spirits.” He is only the second American to have done so. In the following year (1998) he was named the Bon Appetit Wine & Spirits Professional of the Year.

Joseph is a major supporter of the arts, serving as an active member in the Lyric Opera Wine Auction Advisory Board. He has led seminars for the Chicago Humanities Festival, various educational and health-oriented charities, and numerous student groups. His donations of tastings for arts, education, and medical charities have consistently fetched high bids for these deserving organizations. A theatre lover, he consulted in 2003 on an original script by Sharon Evans, “Blind Tasting,” at Live Bait Theatre in Chicago.

Among his professional written works, he is most proud of his critically praised wine notes featured in the landmark series of recipe and photography books by Chef Charlie Trotter. He was the principal wine writer of the 2003 Lyric Opera Auction Catalogue, and will again contribute to the 2006 edition. He also has written grape descriptions for the Wine Grapes posters produced by Ten Speed Press; and over the years he has contributed to the magazines Wine & Spirits, Wine Enthusiast, Santé, Decanter, and Appellation.

As a professional palate, he has tasted for Beverage Testing Institute, United Airlines, the Grand Jury Européen, the Oregon State Fair, StarWine, the Jefferson Cup, and the Detroit Wine Competition. He has coordinated several wine dinners for the James Beard Foundation and many of its chef-contributors, as well as promotional and charity wine dinners around the US. He has spoken at wine festivals in Aspen, Cincinnati, Napa Valley, Sonoma County, Santa Fe, Taos, Telluride, San Diego, Carmel, Nashville, New Orleans, New York, Pinehurst, the Mohegan Sun, Disney properties, and Chicago.

Other interests include film, fiction, photography, baseball, and beer.

To reach Joseph Spellman, joseph@JUSTINwine.com