This is definitely a team/family effort. Learn more about the players behind the wine. It is quite a grouping of personalities...
Olin Schultz - Partner. Thats me! I really love the winemaking process. Choosing the grapes, smelling the ferment, deciding on barrels, topping up, even bottling. First a little background on why - we started making wine because our primary business is selling wine making supplies to both small commercial wineries through MoreWine! Pro and also to home winemakers through MoreWine!. In the beginning, way before Olin Wines, we did a lot of testing and experimenting on a small scale. With, Shea Comfort, our current winemaker leading the experiments we tried different yeast strains with the same wine, made the exact same wine with grapes from different regions, used different oak with the same wine, tried different fermenters, used different malo-lactic cultures, etc. etc.
As we started to make larger and larger batches it organically grew to the point that I decided that we should pursue a small commercial winery. I knew from lots of experience that winemaking is hard and if you want to make something very special you really need to focus on it. That is why we will make one or two wines a year from select vineyards, using new French Oak barrels and give that wine the ulitmate in winemaking attention.
I would love to thank the following people that helped me make this dream a reality. And while the financial return may not be reflective of their time... or their investment!... I think we are doing something special that they all can be very proud of.
My job at Olin wines is running the operation. From actually punching down of the fermentations to topping barrels to label/web design to selling. If you have feedback about the wine or if you have an opportunity that you would like me to talk at feel free to contact me at firstname.lastname@example.org. If for some reason you would like to read more about me personally you can check out my bio at MoreFlavor! ...my day job.
Shea Comfort - Winemaker. I worked with Shea from 2000 to 2004 performing all kinds of experiments (and subsequent writings) that I talked about in my own bio. I have never met anyone more honestly passionate about flavor than Shea. Obviously Shea is extremely into winemaking, but he also a great cook and very interested in beer making, distilling, tea, espresso, etc.. His success in winemaking I attribute to his his relentless pursuit of wine making knowledge, his amazing memory, an attention to detail that is well - second to none - and a fantastic palate. We share a single goal for the wine - start with world class grapes, pack as much flavor as possible into the wine through great winemaking, keep the fruit in the final wine, mix in gorgeous French Oak and enjoy. Shea came back to Olin wines in 2007 and took over the lead winemaking duties from me. I am very excited because while I think our team made fantastic wine 2006 and 2007, Shea is in a different league and has the potential to make really special, World Class wine. Shea is also a winemaking consultant. You can read more about him at his website The Yeast Whisperer.
Darren Schleth - Partner. Darren is my brother and probably the nicest guy alive. He is a construction genius, helping with anything physical in the winery, and is continuing to gain lots of winemaking experience and knowledge. He is there for every Crush and every Press and is always around to help with prepping barrels, putting in floor drains or whatever is called for. He is also an accomplished winemaker with his best effort being a Cabernet Sauvignon he made from Dry Creek valley. Many people know Darren as the creator of the famous Tiki Hut that used to roll through the San Francisco Bay to Breakers. Darren is also a Parrot Head Jimmy Buffet fan. To read even more about Darren you can check out his MoreFlavor! bio
Regan Dillon - Partner. Crazy guy. That sums up Regan. Every company (or companies) has to have one and we have more than reached our quota. Regan is currently busy building a house off the grid with his partner Cindy Rae Braemen in Northern California's Trinity Alps. He is also a gold miner as he has a creek on his property and a monster gold dredge. We hope that his lucky strike will finance the winery expansion (or making selling it not an issue!) Regan helps in all aspects of winemaking from The Crush and Press to construction within. You might see him driving his truck with the flames down the side. Regan also happens to work for MoreFlavor! (see a trend developing...) and has an even greater bio at Crazy Guy of MoreFlavor!
Chris Graham - Partner. Chris and I have known each other for 14 years. We met while he was still in the Entrepeneurship program at the University of Oregon and we have been business partners in MoreFlavor! ever since. We realized in our first meeting that we shared some common obssessions - business, beer, wine, and at the time a sport called Ultimate. Somehow I convinced him opening a winery would be a great idea and he even let me name it... Chris is involved in all aspects of the winery and is always present when work is involved from The Crush to The Press to punching down the wine during fermenation to attending festivals. Chris is a wealth of fermentation knowledge and sits on the Board of Directors of American Association of Brewers. Chris also helps on the back end with IT and with all other aspects of running a winery. And if we ever start a brewery together Chris gets to call it what he wants! Read more about Chris Graham here.
Tristan Johnson - Asst. Winemaker. Tristan runs our MoreWine! brands and as such talks winemaking over 260 days of the year (it is probably closer to 365 because he probably talks wine every day on the weekends as well!) That leaves him frothing at the mouth to make wine come September. Tristan brings another great mind and palate to our winemaking table. He is particulary strong in the science of winemaking and works in all aspects of winemaking throughout the year. Tristan is often running an experiment in the winery on a pump or piece of equipment that he has modified or designed. I think his best solo wine that he made was a Petite Syrah from the Napa Valley. Deep, rich and delicious. TJ also worked with Olin to make our first release the 2006 Cabernet. Tristan also leads winemaking classes in the winery and if you are interested drop him a line at Tristanj@morewinemaking.com. You can view and read a little more about him here.
Ann Schultz - Partner. Sales. As my wife Ann deserves the biggest credit for letting me pursue this time vacuum. Ann is a great salesperson in her own right who loves to meet new people and get to know them. Together we have three children Olivia (5) Cicily (3) and Baron (4 months) so its not like there isn't plenty to do at home. Ann and the girls help during The Crush where they sort grapes coming down the vibrating sorting table. Since Baron is really just learning to suck on anything that moves we don't think you want him mouthing your grapes - his time will come.
Amy Graham - Partner. Marketing Director. Amy is our dynamic marketing person (and the wife of Chris Graham) who you will always be happy to see. She is an event organizer extraordinaire. Outgoing, lovable, and organized. I love working with her. Amy is always bringing us food when we are working late nights and is also a fixture in the winery during Crush and Press.
Liz Schleth - Partner. Sales. A wine lover and big promoter of our wine, Liz gets the same HUGE credit as my wife Ann for allowing Darren to work so many hours on this project. Liz and Darren have two beautiful daughters Caitlyn (8) and Madelyn (6) who might be future wine makers? Liz is a home winemaker (along with Darren) whom I often ask for feedback on the wines we are making.