Joe Swick is a fifth generation Oregonian who grew up in Portland, Oregon. The rest of his family are from Eastern Oregon and the Columbia Gorge area. While working in the wine department of a local organic food store, Joe learned about the passions of wine, which started him on his journey. Joe worked his first harvest as a cellar assistant at Owen Roe in 2003, after meeting some Willamette Valley wine makers on the job.
For the next 10 years, Joe worked more than 15 harvests around the world including California, New Zealand, Tasmania, Portugal and Italy. Yearning to make wine in the Pacific NW under his own label, he returned to the Willamette Valley in 2013.
New Zealand's Central Otago first introduced Joe to biodynamic farming and from traveling throughout France he met Julien Labet (Jura), Yvon Métras (Beaujolais), and Nicolas Gonin (Isère), he gradually embraced natural winemaking. Through his experiences and travels, he concluded that wine should be made simply and authentically; have nothing added or subtracted; and most importantly, express place and vintage. As a result, he sources from certified organic or organically farmed vineyards where possible; eschews sulfur at bottling whenever possible; and neither filters or fines his wines at bottling. In his words: “I like the real deal. No maquillage [makeup].”