Banke Turns Grief to Growth in the Vineyard

by | 05.12.2013 | 8:58am
Barbara Banke and Jess Jackson

Barbara Banke, widow of Stonestreet Farm owner Jess Jackson, has not only grown Stonestreet's racing operations since she took over for her husband, but the couple's Jackson Family Wines also.

In the last two years, Banke has added several high-profile land purchases to the company, including 14 new properties and 2,800 acres. Several of the acquisitions are in Oregon, where Banke plans to add an Oregon Pinot Noir to the company's repertoire.

Unlike the wine business, Banke told the Wall Street Journal's Lettie Teague that the Thoroughbred business “wasn't about making money.”

“Wine is profitable,” she added. “Wine is manageable. Even in the worst harvest, we still get something out of it.”

Read more at the Wall Street Journal


    BARBARA is a very smart lady and Jess was a great teacher. As a friend of Jess I certainly want to see his empire continue to strive. Nice going Barbara many good wishes.

  • Yes, Barbara is a very smart woman. It gives me great pleasure to see her doing well. She reminds me of Penny Chenery, who I have admired all my life. Ladies need a strong woman to look up to, & Barbara is doing a fine job at that. You Go Girl !!

  • Ida Lee

    Ms. Banke is obviously an extremely talented lady and I admire her greatly. I don’t drink alcohol so I’ve never had the Jackson wine. But when it comes to managing Stonestreet, she is doing wonderful work, especially with the fillies. She’s had to take a lot of crap from the public recently over Rachel’s foaling issues. The thing that I remember the most of that most trying time was the photo of Barbara standing next to the doctors who were talking to the press. Her heartache and devastation were there in her face for everyone to see. But she took good care of our Rachel and for that I will be forever grateful. I wish her the best in all her endeavors.

  • BonnieMcDo

    I was lucky enough to meet Jess Jackson at Belmont one day when one of my horses was running. He was wearing his Rachel Cap. He was standing in line upstairs at the Belmont Cafe to get food and I think Nathans…My husband said “There is Jess Jackson” He was at the back of a long line. I doubted him then went over and then he smiled and we spoke for a few moments. He wished me luck in my race. Such a wonderful man. Glad his wife in continuing with the horses and her love of Rachel was heartwarming.

    • RayPaulick

      Comment of the Year! Thanks for sharing that great story.

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