As things begin to reopen and people feel comfortable going out--and ultimately coming to visit us at Latah Creek--I thought it would be fun to introduce some of our team members for those that are new in our community.

There’s no better way to introduce the team than to start by highlighting Latah Creek’s owner and winemaker, Mike Conway, also known as my dad! Way before I came into the picture, my dad began his career in the wine industry. In 1972, he worked as a microbiology technician at E&J Gallo, the largest winery in the United States. A few years later in 1975, my dad left Gallo to spend more time in the microbial field as the head winery microbiologist at Franzia Brother Winery. Then in 1977, he fulfilled his winemaking aspirations when he accepted an assistant winemaker’s position with Parducci Winery in Northern California.

He spent three years training and gaining experience at Parducci, learning from an Italian winemaker the art of reds and a Hungarian winemaker the art of whites. He was then offered a winemaking job for a new start-up winery in a new emerging wine area--Washington State. During my parent’s move to Washington, Mt. St. Helens erupted, raining ash all over, delaying their arrival in Spokane. History marks May 18, 1980 as the eruption of Mt. St. Helens. But, to my family, it was the beginning of winemaking in the Pacific Northwest.

For 2 years, my dad had the responsibility of managing and operating a new winery in Eastern Washington. It was only the 18th winery in the entire state and the first in Spokane, Washington. In 1982, my dad decided to leave this winery and open his own. A partnership was formed between Hogue Cellars and Latah Creek, and my dad was the head winemaker for both wineries, one in Spokane and the other in Prosser. After 2 years of making wine at two locations, he decided that it was time for him to focus his attention on just Latah Creek. His goal was to become one of the best small family owned and operated wineries in Washington State.

Today, I have the privilege of working alongside my dad in something we're both passionate about. Together, my family has developed Latah Creek into a widely acclaimed winery. It's a legacy that I hope to carry on in the coming years.