About Us

After many years in the wine business, AVE Winery was born to make the crème a la crème of wines. We use specialized techniques that made French wines so wonderful, giving them the ability to lead the world for centuries. We selected our barrels from the Troncais forest of France and use designer French yeast to enhance your drinking experience.

Each grape berry is hand sorted by our state of the art crusher and de-stemmer, and with our award winning consultant winemaker, our team makes some of the finest wines in the world.

  • Our "Founders Reserve" Pinot Noir is barrel selected and could be aged from 10+ years, but is drinking magnificently upon release. This is limited to 75-150 cases per year.
  • Our "Founders Reserve" Cabernet Sauvignon is fashioned in the same principle as our Pinot. Our fruit is sourced from the “Beckstoffer GIII Vineyard” and "Mount Veeder" AVA of Napa Valley and made in truly the classical style of any great wines.
  • Our "Founders Reserve" Chardonnay is so rich and balanced and it truly an American "Le Montrachet" created with 100% New French Oak from the Troncais forest of France.
  • Our "Founders Reserve" Syrah is so rich and fruit forward with a healthy French oak backbone, that this wine is renowned worldwide as one of the best American Syrah made. We start with our fruit from the famous Stolpman vineyard and the Troncais barrel specifically made for this wine, saignée our reserve Syrah early in the fermenting process and adds to our tremendous depth.

AVE Winery is an organization based in Redondo Beach, California that grew out of a lifelong passion for Bob Kugler.  Bob has been making wine as a hobby for more than 35 years.  In 2009, Bob began buying Pinot Noir grapes in large quantities to create his own winery.  Grapes from his first vintages were purchased from Paso Robles.  To date, AVE Winery has sold out of all vintages prior to 2012. 

For the 2013 harvest, Bob switched pinot vineyards to La Encantada in the Santa Rita Foothills (Sta.Rita).  At that time, Bob also purchased Syrah grapes from Stolpman Winery as well as white wine grapes – Sauvignon Blanc and Chardonnay – from Presqu’ile, located in Santa Maria.  Prior to the 2014 harvest, AVE Winery was allocated several acres of Cabernet Sauvignon grapes from Crouse Vineyards in the Mt. Veeder AVA (Mount Veeder Magic Vineyards) as well as Beckstoffer Georges III Vineyard in the Napa Valley AVA. 

The Team
Bob Kugler, Founder Winemaker and CEO, is a serial entrepreneur having started and grown several businesses in the US and China including ten years as an angel investor consulting startups. Bob’s first vintage was a Napa Cabernet from the 1980 harvest. He produced wine for the next five years before taking time off to raise his 5 children. In 2009, Marc Goldberg, owner and winemaker at Windward Winery in Paso Robles, challenged him to “help” him with his Pinot Noir operation, the result of this challenge was AVE Winery 2009 “Ave” Pinot Noir. Bob's dedication to making the finest single vineyard wine helped make his Pinot Noir to be a sought after wine. His first vintage sold out within 12 months of release without any marketing spend. Bob visits each of his vineyards continually and works with his highly respected growers, offering suggestions to achieve the perfect grape for his outstanding wines.
Signe Zoller, Consultant Winemaker, began her winemaking career in 1984, after earning a master’s degree in Enology from the University of California, Davis. A pioneer in the wine industry, Signe has created a name for herself, not only because she is a female winemaker in a predominantly male trade, but also because her innovation and drive have established her as one of the notable winemakers in California.
Her extensive knowledge of winemaking started at Kendall-Jackson winery in the 1980s when it was only a six-person operation. From there, Signe moved on to lead the winemaking at Meridian Vineyard with founding winemaker Chuck Ortman. Before starting her own label, she also held a senior winemaking position at Cambria Winery in Paso Robles. Currently, she is the owner of Zoller Wine Styling in Paso Robles where she consults with wineries ranging from 1 barrel productions to multiple varietals.
Alexis Kugler, Social Maven, is responsible for the online marketing for AVE Winery. Alexis updates the website, maintains an active AVE Winery Facebook Fan page, uploading pictures and stories to keep AVE winery relevant in people’s daily lives.