So.. it’s Oregon Wine Month and I thought this was perhaps a good moment to reflect on what the Oregon wine industry means to me personally. I’ve had this business for seventeen years now. It’s gone through many changes, as have I (gravity sure as hell hasn't been a friend). One thing that has always remained though is the support and friendship of the people that I’ve met within the industry. I’ve had the fortune to work in many different facets: marketing, national sales through distributors, tasting room sales, local wholesale sales, winemaking, viticulture and I'm constantly warmed by the collaborative spirit of the people that I encounter.
When I took over the winemaking in 2011 it was a huge challenge but there was no shortage of winemakers willing to offer me their time and advice. Aron was always very supportive, and Chris Berg at Laurel Ridge was great when I was there, but I've had advice from tons of winemaker friends over the years. I find most Oregon winemakers are equally happy to share their challenges and successes in the spirit of educating each other.
Even the sales teams seem to be complimentary of each other, rather than trying to out-do each other. There's the general idea that if one of us succeeds, we all do.
Probably my favorite thing about making wine at S.E. Wine Collective is the people I work with. Tom and Kate have created an environment that nurtures each of the small winery businesses that works in their space and they in turn support each other.
There are some bigger companies coming to Oregon and the business is changing and evolving of course. In some ways it feels like it's growing up. It's good to grow up, and it's important to be constantly evolving. I'm excited to see what our future as an industry will bring, and look forward to maintaining the sprit of camaraderie and cooperation that I think makes us special.