Bev Brown: Biography
Bev Brown was born in Texas and moved to the Napa Valley at an early age. After graduating from the local high school, Bev left Napa to attend college at the University of Utah to study pre-law and pursue her dream of making the ski team. It was during her freshman year in college that Bev caught the “cooking” bug and began hosting dinner parties in the dorm lounge. “My mother was a great cook and my father had a vineyard so I learned to appreciate good food and wine at an early age. Going from the polished meals my mother cooked to dorm food was a bit of a culture shock”! Nonetheless, she worked in the cafeteria bakery to earn extra money and found that she really enjoyed cooking.
Excited by the prospect of a career in cooking, she left Utah and entered the California Culinary Academy shortly after it opened in 1978. Bev graduated in December 1979 with high honors. Soon after, she moved to France to do an internship at a restaurant in a small town near Cognac. During the year she spent in Europe, Bev decided to specialize in pastry cooking. Upon returning to California, she was the pastry chef at Il Fornaio in San Francisco, where she stayed for several years before returning to the Napa Valley to take the position of pastry chef at Domaine Chandon.
Not wanting to work those “crazy” restaurant hours after her son was born, she made an easy transition into the wine business. First, at Frog’s Leap and then at Turley Wine Cellars, splitting her duties as winery chef and assistant sales director. She joined the Hollywood and Vine team in 1999 where she wears way too many hats but loves every minute of it!
During her time off, Bev is a volunteer member of the National Ski Patrol (nope, she never did make the college ski team!) and loves to SCUBA dive, travel, hike, practice yoga, and of course cook.
She lives in St. Helena with her teenage son, who is fully prepared to leave for college soon with all of her favorite recipes!