You chef's must make more than you're saying, judging by the wines you like to drink.
I think of a winemaker like I think of a chef, just fewer ingredients. Two of my favorite California winemakers are Bob Lindquist and Jim Clendennon. At whatever pricepoint, these guys make consistently good wine - Qupe, Il Podere dell'Olivos, Ici/La-bas, Chateau Routas, Cold Heaven, Au Bon Climat, etc. Kathy Joseph, from Fiddlehead Cellars makes excellent Pinot Noir and Sauvignon Blanc. Cathy Corrison's 1994 Cabernet Sauvignon is a beautiful work of art!