Behind Vice Versa is a team comprising of the vintner-proprietors, winemakers, winery operators, administrative staff, growers, vineyard workers and pickers. Over 50 people contribute every vintage directly to the wines we make. Here are a few members of the core team.
Proprietor / Founder
While Patrice has a hand in everything from production to sales, hospitality and administration, he is well surrounded by a seasoned team of passionate, talented and dedicated people. The creation of Vice Versa has been a lifelong dream that he still feels excited and fortunate to be living on a daily basis.
Born and raised in Montreal, Canada, Samantha is a Pharm. D pharmacist by trade. Her original encounter with great wine was during her first date with Patrice in 2011 when they shared a bottle of Château Lafleur 1982. She naturally connected with the science of the craft and began her own fervent journey in the world of wine.
Like the celebrated wines on which he’s built his reputation, Philippe Melka’s career has been influenced by soil.
A native of Bordeaux, Philippe grew up intrigued by the intricacies of the land around him. When it came time for college, he acted on his childhood interests, earning a degree in Geology at the University of Bordeaux. A class in winemaking in his final year was a turning point, propelling him to earn a Master’s degree in Agronomy and Enology.
Philippe has the rare combination of talent and fortune to be a winemaker who started at the top: his first job out of school was at Château Haut Brion. He has been trained and influenced by some of the most notable personalities in the wine business including Jean Delmas and Jean Philippe Masclef from Haut-Brion, Christian Moueix and Jean Claude Berrouet from Petrus, Paul Draper from Ridge, and the globetrotting wine consultant Michel Rolland with whom he continues to work on consulting projects.
His first job in Napa Valley was studying soils for Dominus Estate from 1991 to 1993. The terroir here was a revelation for him and although he went back to France afterward, taking a position with Chateau Petrus, he returned to the valley in 1994 and has called this his home ever since. For the past 20 years Philippe has served as the winemaking consultant for some of Napa’s most highly regarded properties. He began working with Vice Versa in 2014.
Maayan was born and raised in Israel where he practiced judo from the age of 4 until he joined the army at the age of 18. He served in the IDF for almost 4 years as a paratrooper. After leaving the army, Maayan traveled around the world for a few years and began to feel the calling for wine. He got his start working at some of the leading wineries in Israel, including Margalit Winery.
After moving to Napa, Maayan found himself working with some of the most exceptional vineyards and wineries such as Dalla Valle and Screaming Eagle where he helped to craft extraordinary wines. In early 2014, he joined Atelier Melka as the Director of Winemaking and began working with Vice Versa shortly thereafter.