Classic Artisan Wines

Classic Artisan Wines is a fine wine broker for the wines of the Santa Cruz Mountains, Napa Valley, Central Coast, Paso Robles and Russian River.



Donna Morrison-Leaf
Chef/Pairings Expert

If I were a food, I would be an heirloom-zebra tomato – extremely distinctive from all the others, a little hard on the outside, but pure love at the center.

After a 26-year career developing proposals in the aerospace business and 12 years as a successful entrepreneur providing consulting services to state and local government, aerospace, military, and commercial businesses, I decided it was time for a change.  I wanted to expand my horizon and learn something new. Almost immediately, the light bulb went on and said culinary school. I searched the internet for a school in my local area for several days and decided the South Bay School of Cooking was perfect for me. Chef Annette and her staff provide classes in domestic and international cuisines that bring back memories of my world travels. I have always enjoyed pairing wines, beers, and spirits with each dish unique to the countries I visit.

My sister, Darlene de la Cerna, proprietor of Classic Artisan Wines  recruited me as her beverage and food pairing chef. I continue to study and sample dishes paired with different beverages. Entrepreneurs out there in our wonderful world of flavors have exploded their palates with different flavors for decades. I’m still exploring and enjoying my new-found journey. My recipes are just a tip-of-the-iceberg of what I have savored, and hope you will enjoy. There are additional recipes by my daughter, April Marie, and Bookmark our website and enjoy more recipes paired with wine and beer. Bon apetit!

Darlene says: "Donna has been focusing not just on the taste buds but also on the emotional experience of pairing wines with food. Donna is constantly experimenting with new techniques and ingredients in order to develop her cuisine, which focuses on clear flavors with simple, yet beautiful presentations. That experience shows that anything is possible and that you have to keep an open mind if you want to be creative in cooking."