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Chris Hoel

Founder

Chris Hoel founded Harper’s Club in 2016- bringing a discerning taste from 20+ years in wine to developing some of the world’s most incredible wine collections, tailoring collections to individual lifestyles and preferences. Most recently he created Luckysomm- an online wine retail site that consists of quality, unique wines at an amazing value.  In addition, he sits on the board of advisors for SommCon and is the resident Sommelier for the Martha Stewart Wine Co. 

 

 From establishing the St. Louis Wine Clinic in 2004 to his years as a sommelier at The French Laundry, gathering top industry honors along the way, Chris has built a legacy of trust and experience in servicing his premium clientele. 

 

Chris is currently based in Los Angeles and the Napa Valley with his wife Miranda and their son, Ronan. 

Hanneke Sohnen 

Director, Sales & Marketing

Hailing from five generations of hoteliers, restaurateurs and estate managers Hanneke's understanding of  VIP services is inspiring and expansive. Family lineage aside, Hanneke has worked with some of the world’s best hotels, resorts and restaurants and in her career she has hosted and worked with Presidents, dignitaries and Royalty around the world. After a decade working in Sales & Marketing  for two fortune 50 companies Hanneke spread her wings and found her way into the fine and rare wine world. Hanneke landed at Harper’s Club in 2020. In her  spare time you can find her finding the next best restaurant in town or paddle boarding near her home in Newport Beach with her husband Andrew and dog Dolly Parton.

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Kate Green

Director, Comms & Strategic Partnerships

 

A fourteen-year veteran of the restaurant & hospitality business, Kate Green cut her teeth under Chef Nancy Silverton, where she worked her way up from answering phones to Director of Communications for the Mozza Restaurant Group. A fixture in the food and wine scene around Los Angeles, Kate has a passion for bringing together chefs and winemakers at unique pop-ups to showcase their talents. She currently co-hosts the talk show and podcast Tastemade Presents: Table Setting, which allows her to talk with the most innovative thinkers in the food and beverage world about current trends.

 

You can usually find her with a glass of Champagne in her hand and a Los Angeles Dodgers ball-cap on her head.

Christina Pate 

Wine Buyer 

 Christina finds the wines that our clients wish for, working with our close and trusted partners in the wine trade both in the US and in Europe, and directly with selected producers in California.  Relationships are just as important in sourcing as they are in building wine collections for our clients.  With 18+ years of experience in fine and rare wine, she has built a track record of professionalism and integrity and built relationships with partners who do business the same way.  Christina also oversees the safe transit of our stock to our warehouse, ensuring that transport is under controlled conditions at all times.  A transplant from her New Zealand home, she loves all wine that is made honestly and tells the story of its place and time.

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Scott Rutkowksi

Senior Wine Advisor

 

The love for wine did not come until at a later age for Scott. At the start of his senior year at Purdue University, he decided to take a wine appreciation course that started his passion for wine that would go on to become his career. After graduating, he moved to Chicago where he grew up and worked in a variety of wine retail shops and restaurants including Grant Achatz’s Next Restaurant before landing at the world-renowned wine auction house Hart Davis Hart in 2015. Since then, Scott has immersed himself in the fine wine industry and continues to build and foster relationships with individuals from all over. In Scott’s free time he voraciously reads books, magazines, and articles on anything about wine to broaden his horizons, but if he truly wants to relax he goes on long walks with his partner Hannah and border collie Nova. 

Pablo Kovacs

Senior Wine Advisor 

Food and wine have always been a big part of Pablo’s life. His father, Thomas Kovacs was a chef for Starwood Corp. specializing in opening hotels so Pablo was fortunate enough to grow up and live all over the world and experience many different cultures and cuisines. 25 years of hospitality experience doing everything from cooking in award winning kitchens to running beverage programs for multi-unit restaurant companies have all had a part in shaping how Pablo treats and cherishes his relationships with his clients. Pablo believes that wine has a unique trait – it brings people together. Special bottles are rarely enjoyed alone and ever since wine was first produced it has always been a conduit for conversation, good company and celebration. 

 

 

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Noel Perez
Wine Advisor

Noel Perez is a certified Sommelier and professional craft bartender; he received his Associate of Arts in business administration in 2013. He then quickly discovered his passion for hospitality when he began working for the Napa Rose, a five-star fine dining restaurant, at the Disneyland Resort in Anaheim California. Over the years he has developed relationships with private collectors to analyze and create product packages as a consultant in the wine and spirits industry. Being born and raised in California has its perks, you can drive an hour in any direction and you are able to see the snow or head to the beach. This is something Noel takes advantage of quite often. When he is not behind the bar or tasting the next best vintage he enjoys snowboarding, surfing, and will DJ an occasional event at a local venue.

Ryan Leeman
Manager, Operations & Logistics

Wine has been a focus for Ryan Leeman for over 35 years. Ryan’s early passion for fermentation led him to his studies at Cal Poly San Luis Obispo and Cornell University where he graduated with his BS in Food Science. Ryan started his winemaking career, at the ripe old age of 26 as Associate Winemaker at Paumanok Vineyards on Long Island, New York. Ryan then moved to California where he became the Winemaker for Van Ruiten Family Winery. In 2009 Ryan received his highest accolade when Hugh Johnson lead a panel of judges and selected the 2007 Van Ruiten Old Vine Zinfandel as a “Top 12 PICK” for the Wall Street Journal Wine Club. Enjoying dinner with Hugh Johnson in New York City was one of his greatest honors and pleasures. Since 2012 Ryan has worked with several wineries in the Napa Valley and most recently has been passing on his knowledge as the Cellarmaster at UC Davis Winery. When not managing logistics for the Harper’s Club, you will find Ryan on the local waters and pulling Dungeness crabs out of the San Francisco Bay just beyond the Golden Gate.

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Travis Loveseth

Warehouse Associate

Initially, in early childhood education, Travis ventured into restaurant and hospitality in 2014. He quickly moved up the ranks and by 2018, he was an experienced server/bartender overseeing many large events such as weddings and large golf tournaments. Travis carefully and attentively handles all wines in our warehouse as well as all shipments, ensuring that all bottles are safely ready to be shipped to the client. His experience in treating wine bottles with respect is one of the most important tenants of Harper’s Club. As our newest team member, Travis is eager to grow with us and will be another example of reliability and professionalism within this company.