While on a recent trip to Walla Walla wine country, Jose and I had the pleasure of meeting with Dr. Myles Anderson of the Walla Walla Vintners. We have to thank Paul Gregutt, who’s Washington state’s most valuable wine writer resource. Staying with Paul and Karen Gregutt in their lovely and homey Waitsburg cottages gave us a great tour advantage. (It’s it always best when visiting anywhere to have a “local” connection, right?)

Paul not only highly recommended that we visit with Myles Anderson of the Walla Walla Vintners, but he also set up an appointment for us with Myles, who is also associated with the Walla Walla Community College. Dr. Anderson’s served as a counselor, instructor, administrator, and founding director for the Institute for Enology and Viticulture. He’s considered a very  distinguished winemaker in Washington state, having launched Walla Walla Vintners, an artisan winery, in 1995. This was the eighth winery to be opened in Walla Walla Valley. He’s very much a pioneer, and we were so fortunate to have Paul set us up. Paul, by the way, sits on the board of this community college, which honestly doesn’t surprise me a bit. Paul’s also a doer and sharer in this part of the Northwest.

This day turned out to be very special, because Myles came out on a day that was not only his wife’s birthday (which was very important to him, as it should have been). But also, just as importantly – demonstrating the sheer commitment to getting it all done – he was scheduled to speak at a symposium for viticulturists that day at Walla Walla’s Community College’s Center for Enology and Viticulture. Talk about “getting it all done.” I was reminded of the saying, “If you want something done, ask a busy person.”

“The mission of the Walla Walla Institute for Enology and Viticulture is to facilitate alliances with vintners and viticulturists in the Walla Walla Valley Appellation and the State of Washington, as well as to promote the economic development of the wine industry and to provide education and training for those in this industry.”

And, it does just that, as Dr. Anderson talks about its success in this video.

[Image: Left, Jose Diaz. Right, Jeff Herinckx, winemaker for Oak Knoll Winery, one of our traveling companions]

I found Myles to be formal in a very charming way, and extremely helpful. After our two filmings of his winery and wines, he directed us to go up the driveway to his house for the best view of his sweeping valley. As I stood there taking a picture of it all, my breath was taken away. I was thinking, “This is what he looks at everyday of his life. No wonder he’s the inspiration he is for everyone else. He starts his day with awe and wonder, and then goes out to the world to share that energy.”

Appropriately named, because this winery has a team of people involved in winemaking at Walla Walla Vintners, there are four 20 acre plots that are dry farmed. Myles talked briefly with Jose about who’s part of this ingenious group, that came together to share a common purpose and passion.


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