If you’ve been following our blog for a while, we aren’t strangers anymore. For those that are new to the Latah Creek family, I thought I would give a little bit more of my background so we can get to know each other better!

I was raised among wine barrels and bottles. I came into the world just as my mom and dad were putting their finishing touches on Latah Creek’s building. Later on, as a teenager, I did a number of things to help around the winery. I helped with bottling, I cleaned the tanks, and I even packed gift baskets in the gift shop. Gradually, my dad began teaching me the art and science of winemaking. In fact, our Monarch Reserve Reds Program was produced as a result of my dad teaching me the craft of making a small lot wine. What was intended as a one-time batch, was so popular that we continue to produce many small lot reds under our Reserve label.

My dad learned his trade through apprenticeship and wanted me to have a similar hands-on-experience to learn the family business. I can remember the first batch of wine I helped my dad produce. I remember everything from the grape selection, to the specific yeast I got to choose, to the bottling of that 2004 Vintage. Wine Spectator gave the Riesling 90 points rating! I had been so intrigued with the process over the course of that 9 months, but after receiving such high praise, I just knew that winemaking was my calling. Similar to my dad, I fell in love with the science of vinification. So, I changed my career path during my college years from physical therapy. In 2005, I graduated with honors from Eastern Washington University with my Bachelor degree in Biology.

One day, I hope to take over the winery fully. Today, I am continuing to learn winemaking, although he started Latah Creek after only 5 years of experience, and I am at 16 year now! My mom also shows me the fiscal aspects of the business. I am confident and ready to take on the leading role at Latah Creek in the coming years. And my daughters, Analisa and Paige may also have a destiny for the family business as well. They surely spend enough time at the winery and I’m always finding their toys around the winery, similar to my parents when I was growing up at Latah Creek. I wouldn't trade my winery upbringing for anything and I can't think of a better atmosphere than that of our family business to raise my own kids. In fact, they got a good dose of what working in a family business is like during this Covid season. They were here labeling and bottling wine, when we couldn't have anyone in the winery!

- Natalie