Swedish Hill Winery

Our People

The Winemakers Cellar

Meet Our Winemakers

The people behind our award-winning winery

Dave Peterson
CEO, Co-Owner
With a BS from Cornell University and a PhD in Viticulture from Penn State University, Dave is an expert in the cultivation and harvesting of grapes as well as the science behind wine making. After earning his degrees, he became the Wine and Grapes Specialist at Missouri State University and then held the same position at Cornell before joining (and eventually leading) his family’s business at Swedish Hill. Dave has presented all over the country on growing and wine making best practices. And with close to 40 years of hands-on experience, his intuition and instincts along with his extensive agricultural knowledge base immensely benefit the wine-making process here at Swedish.
Zachary Pegram
Head Winemaker
After working a couple of harrowing harvests in the Willamette Valley of Oregon, Zach was hooked. He spent the following 2 years studying wine styles and profiles in New York City and then balanced this training by getting his Master’s in Enology from Cornell University. He has been making wine in the Finger Lakes for the last 10 years and continues to be amazed at the quality of fruit and wine that is produced in the Finger Lakes. He is grateful to be a part of the creative efforts of the region.
Joshua Kessler
Associate Winemaker
Josh is the newest addition to our team and he brings a biology degree from Hobart and William Smith as well as a Masters in Viticulture and Enology from Cornell University. Josh has lived in the Finger Lakes for the past 10 years and was inspired to pursue a career in winemaking after working in the industry and witnessing the sense of community and camaraderie amongst the wineries of the region. He believes in making wines that taste great and compliment food, while also not being afraid to step outside the box.

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