So in Episode 30, Amy shared with us about Vindon Vineyard in Newberg, Oregon, and its new President Tiquette Bramlett, the first Black woman to be president of a winery in a major US wine region. Set up on a hillside right in the middle of Oregon Wine Country, this boutique winery and tasting room is putting out amazing wine and working to include more diversity in the wine industry. Right after Episode 30 aired (as in posting 2 minutes before walking out the door) we went to Vindon on a lovely Saturday afternoon for a little wine tasting. The wine was excellent, especially the 3-Clones Pinot Noir and the Tempranillo, but was even more impressive were the people running the vineyard. While we only went out for a tasting, we ended up meeting and talking with owner Dru Allen, who bought the winery with his wife, Erin, in November of 2020. We also met Tiquette Bramlett as she and Dru met all the guests and chatted about wine, native bluebirds, and grapes.
We talked to Dru about hiring Tiquette. Dru said that her race had nothing to do with hiring her, it was all her talent and personality, and it was only after they were shocked to learn Tiquette was the first Black woman in Oregon to be the president of a winery. He said he was even more shocked when he found out that she was the first Black woman to be president of a winery in the United States. And while Tiquette was anything but a diversity hire, the Allens and Tiquette want to make an effort to add diversity to the wine industry in Oregon. They plan on hosting educational programs to allow more people to learn the different aspects of winemaking and make it more accessible to anyone who is interested. Dru also taught us about the true Oregon bluebirds that live on his property, which as I understand it, are quite rare to see, even for experienced twitchers (super serious birdwatcher types). These are some beautiful birds, and despite living in Oregon my entire life, I have never seen this variety of bird.
Tiquette was delightful to talk to- full of energy and information about wine. This lady knows her stuff and just is really easy to talk to. Everybody at the Vindon Vineyard was just so friendly and fun. Definitely, a relaxed atmosphere and the view is just so beautiful. We bought bottles of wine to take home and will absolutely be returning for more wine tasting, conversation, gorgeous views and to just support some really nice people who are changing expectations in the wine industry.
You can find more about Vindon Vineyard at https://vidonvineyard.com/. Go support local businesses in your area that support diversity and sustainable practices. Cheers!