Who Am I . . .
. . . and why should you pay any attention to what I have to say about Northwest wine?
Well, I drink a lot of Northwest wine (I mean, a lot). Okay, that’s one qualification (widely shared, I know). I frequently travel to all the AVAs of the Northwest and talk to winemakers and vineyard owners. That's two. Also, I write reasonably well. That’s three.
But wait, there’s more . . .
- I began writing professionally about Northwest wine when I moved to Oregon in the year 1998 B.B. (Before Blogs). I had spent most of my life in the San Francisco Bay Area and wine was always an ardent hobby. The summer after I graduated college in 19mumbleymumbley6, I took myself up to Napa Valley for a weekend and made my own wine tour. I had to use my father's credit card to buy the one wine I was most impressed with at the time: 1976 Heitz Martha's Vineyard Cabernet Sauvignon (a bottle I didn't open until 2000—but that's another story.)
When I came to Oregon in 1998 I discovered they made wine up here, too. How quaint.
I became so interested in our local wines that I began the Oregon Wine Report, a color print magazine (you remember print, don't you?). It was a success. In 2005 it was a featured “100 Favorite Things” in SAVEUR Magazine, and in 2006 I was awarded a James Beard Journalism Award (kind of the Oscars of the foodie world) for my work on the Oregon Wine Report. In 2005 I acquired ownership of Northwest Palate Magazine, and combined the two publications until 2013, when I moved all my writing online.
Along the way I gained valuable experience as a wine judge for many competitions, and combined my 17 years of high-tech marketging experience with my wine background to begin consulting with individual wineries and wine businesses. Also in 2010 my book Essential Wines & Wineries of the Pacific Northwest; A Guide to the Wine Countries of Washington, Oregon, British Columbia, and Idaho, was published by Timber Press, a subsidiary of Workman Publishing.
So, besides liking wine and being able to string together a sentence or two, I also have 14 year's worth of experience tasting, traveling, and writing about Northwest wines. I believe I know whereof I write!
Here's some more detail on my wine writing credits:
Wines & Vines
San Francisco Chronicle
Eugene Register Guard
2013 Hugh Johnson's Pocket Wine Book
The Business of Wine, An Encyclopedia
Wine Dogs USA and Wine Dogs USA 3
Writer, editor, publisher of:
Oregon Wine Report (1998-2005)
Northwest Palate (2005-2012)
EssentialNorthwestWines.com (est. 2013)
Dallas Morning News Wine Competition,
Sunset Magazine International Wine Competition
Portland Indie Wine Festival
Oregon Wine Awards
Oregon State Wine Competition
Greatest of the Grape
Oregon Wine Board
SAVEUR Magazine "Top 100" (2004)
Scholarship Recipient, Symposium for Professional Wine Writers (2006, 2008)
Industry Partner Award, Oregon Wine Board (2010)
Essential Northwest Wines & Wineries Book
Cole's book Essential Wines and Wineries of the Pacific Northwest, A Guide to the Wine Countries of Washington, Oregon, British Columbia, and Idaho was published in 2010 by Timber Press, a subsidiary of Workman Publishing. It is the only reference to cover the entire Pacific Northwest wine region.