So, long time coming...
I'm starting a winery. Here in Portland. With my friend Chris, who is currently the assistant winemaker at Arcane Cellars (the winery that I also work at).
This has been a dream of mine for some time. I have imagined Holly and I moving to some pastoral place in the Sierra Foothills after the boys are graduated, planting some vines, and making some wine as we age gracefully, with no weight gain.
But that's a helluva long time from now and I thought, what's wrong with Portland? Why not start now?
So we are.
We are making our first commercial batch of wine this fall in Chris' garage. It'll take the better part of a year for that wine to become ready for sale, so doing it in his garage will keep overhead low. Next summer (2011), we'll find a spot here in Portland, hopefully not far from our house, where we'll move the gear to and open a tasting lounge to try, drink, and buy our wines (and perhaps some other folks as well).
We're calling it Enso Winery. The idea is capturing balance, creativity, and existential expression (of ourselves, the terroir, the year) in our wines.
Here's a little snippet I came across after Holly suggested the name...
"It is believed by many that the character of the artist is fully exposed in how he draws Enso, and that only one who is mentally and spiritually whole can draw a true Enso."
We're planning on making a Zin and a Malbec, some Petite Sirah and Mourvedre, and our whites for this year will probably be a Pinot Gris and a Riesling. We'll also make a rosé out of some of our reds. Very exciting.
So, that's it. We have forms filed with all the different regulators (we're talking 100+ pages of stuff), agreements with grape growers, gear on its way, barrels in storage. Just a matter of time.
Oh, on the topic of grape growers, true, we are not growing our own. And that's something that I am both grateful for and disappointed about. Some day, I hope to tend the vines that will produce our wine, but it's too high a cost and too huge a risk to undertake just now.
For now, an urban winery in Portland, Oregon seems just right. A place to share fine wine, host events, and connect people. Yah, that sounds nice.
Website (not really functional yet)