Esteban Brunello, Owner/Wine Director
Buenos Aires native Esteban Brunello brings more than 27 years of restaurant experience to Brunello Wine Bar. His career began in San Francisco where he started out as a busser and worked his way up the restaurant ranks as a food runner, server, bartender, manager, sommelier, and wine director. Esteban has been fortunate to work for several prominent wine-focused restaurants in the Bay Area including: SPQR, Oliveto, Farina, and The Barrel Room. In 2013, he received a “Rising Star Sommelier Award” from the New York-based culinary magazine StarChefs. Esteban has trained with the International Sommelier Guild and holds the title “Italian Wine Specialist” through the North American Sommelier Association and the Associazione Italiana Sommelier. Esteban and his family moved to Durham in 2015 and immediately felt at home in the Bull City. With a love of pork products, barbeque, rambling conversations, and laidback living, North Carolina and Argentina are a bit of kindred souls. Esteban is excited to bring a diverse wine program to Brunello Wine Bar, which highlights old world wines as well as lesser-known regions and varietals. That said, he is a no-fuss kind of wine guy who believes that, above all else, wine drinking is about having fun and being with friends. His true passion is guiding guests to find new and unexpected wines that they love to drink.