Discover Our Story
Meeting in 2016 at a Golf Channel Am Tour event, at the famed Kiawah Island Ocean Course in South Carolina, Blake Barnes and Brandon Casella realized they both shared a love for golf and smooth drinking wine.
That was the start of the Casella-Barnes partnership, and the creation of 9 Iron Wines, a fruit forward California blend, as smooth and easy as a 9 Iron approach on your favorite hole.
Brandon Casella is a Veteran of the US Army, having proudly served from 2002 through 2016. His years of service included oversea deployment in Kuwait, Qatar, UAE, Iraq, and Afghanistan. Brandon has a long history of serving this country, and his fellow veterans. In 2016, Blake introduced Brandon to Camp Hope and the PTSD Foundation of America.
Blake Barnes started his insurance career in 1996, after having served as the CFO of a major electrical contractor. Blake’s true strengths lay in his ability to build lasting relation
ships. He sits on the board of many different companies, but the one board he is most honored to serve on is the Board at Camp Hope. Blake continues to spread the message about this facility to Veterans and their families. Over the years, Blake has invested in many different successful companies, and taken his friends and colleagues on the ride of their life.
Brandon’s education in the wine business started early. He learned the business from his father, who worked with a major Florida distribution company. Brandon’s foothold in the industry was the momentum they needed to bring their idea to fruition. Brandon’s Wine and Spirit career spans several years, with stints in Miami, Chicago, and Houston, serving as brand managers for not only wines, but Rum, Tequila, Vodka and Scotches. Along the way, Brandon has expanded his knowledge on not only the sales and distribution, but has earned certifications from WSET, the prestigious International Wine and Spirit Education Trust.
Brandon is an enthusiastic traveler, always on the move, sampling wines from different regions and serves as an advisor for blenders interested in expanding their offerings.