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Reflection

Meditation and Reflection

In fewer than eighteen months I moved my tearful parents into assisted living, sold most of their stuff, rented their home, took over their finances, spoke at my sister’s funeral, lost my mother, planned a wedding, got married, and turned 50.

It was quite a storm.  However, it seems I spent those months in the eye of it. I became meditative and reflective.

During this reflection, I sensed something was internally amiss. I wasn’t where I had thought I could be, nor where I wanted to be. It was clear I had veered off a course I had set long ago.

I found myself spread thin with uninteresting projects; sometimes referred to as golden handcuffs.

Golden handcuffs are those projects where your heart isn’t in it, you’re not inspired, “but it makes good money, so…”

When I caught myself justifying with those words, it was a sign to make a change.

Twelve years in, the winery was doing well by most standards. We had great restaurant partners such as Bouchon, Bistro Jeanty, Redd and Mustards in town. We had fiercely loyal supporters (thanks, Mike and Sue Hill, John and Kim Balder). But in meditation and reflexion, I felt I could go much deeper.

Connection

The more profound connections are what interested me; the link to the Napa Valley, the sources of our fruit, the vineyard workers, the winemaking process, sharing the wine at the table, the sommeliers who pour it, and the people who enjoy it.

I knew I wanted to spend my time showing that wine and food can nourish us in more ways than one.

They serve as a departure point for exploring rich and complex traditions. Our body is nourished, as well as our intellect and our soul. They work at the side of music, language, and other arts to share stories and histories.

New Course

I decided to reset my direction. Consequently, I excused myself from as many of my other commitments as I could (thanks, Jeff). More importantly, I purchased my partners’ interest, taking complete financial and creative control of the winery.

I can now say I feel good. This year ushered in a new look, website, labels, and this blog. Additionally, I increased our vineyard sources and am taking a more active role, working by the side of my winemaker, Jason Moore.

This blog is a space where I can deepen these connections. I want to show behind-the-scenes, the inner workings, and the many ways how we are nourished. Most of all, I want to share my work.

Consider this access to my studio.

My storm made clear the point; our time here is limited. I now wake up doing what I love. Allow me to tell you about it.

Joe

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