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What Makes Me Tick?

Often people want to know a little more about the people behind the winery.

So today I thought I would give you a peek into what makes me tick and then soon after my very lovely and talented wife, Maria, can give you some insight into her passions and interest.

Many of you know that I went from being an attorney to winemaker. Not a typical journey for a winegrower and winemaker, but not unusual either. But I thought you would be more interested to find out about what motivates me beyond what I do for a living. When I meet someone, I want to find out what makes them tick or what gets them out of bed every morning.

Many things inspire me, but the biggest joy for Maria and I, has been being the parents of three wonderful children. Our oldest, Rachel, graduated this May from the University of Minnesota and is now working as a financial analyst. Our twins, Isaac and Allie, are beginning their junior years at the University of Wisconsin-Madison. This marks the fifth year that we have had to say good-bye to the kids as they enter a new school year. I know that I sound like an overly sentimental father when I say this, but every time, as I head back home after dropping them off, tears fill my eyes for the next few hours as memories fill my mind and heart. They are tears of joy of tears of reflection and tears of hope.

Our children have been such an integral part of our lives and of our journey of starting, owning, and operating these two wineries over the last 19 years. I know they have learned a lot from us and feel so grateful for what we have experienced along the way with them. They are so well prepared for what lies ahead for them, but it hurts a little to know that they are moving on to the next steps in life and that our time together will be less.

So, when people ask me what do I enjoy most about being a winemaker and owning a winery, I have to honestly say it is not about medals or financial success, or even the pioneering a wine region no one thought possible. What has given me and will always give me the most joy and pride about all of this is that we did it together. (Now I am crying again, so I will stop for now.)

Enjoy your family!

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