To Reach the Port of Heaven

To Reach the Port of Heaven

“I find the great thing in this world is not so much where we stand, as in what direction we are moving: To reach the Port of Heaven, we must sail sometimes with the wind and sometimes against it – but sail we must, and not drift, nor lie anchor.”

Oliver Wendell Holmes, Sr.

The Right Timing

The Right Timing

“Success is no accident. It is hard work, perseverance, learning, studying, sacrifice, and most of all, love of what you are doing or learning to do”


A friend of mine recently noted that I seem to be in all the right places at all the right times. While I do find myself getting my foot in the door at a few correct moments, I attribute that luck to my persistence and hard work.

Before I came to Walla Walla I was working for a nation-wide wine retailer. I liked my job, but I hoped that I could make a better connection with the industry than fighting for America’s superstore.

I formulated plans to leave, and began searching for the right place to go. I landed a job interview for an Event Coordinator position at a winery in California’s San Joaquin Valley. While my hopes were high, my qualifications were unsatisfactory. I did not get the job, and I found myself back at square one. read more…

13 Days in Walla Walla

On August 14th, my wife and I set out for the West Coast. Driving separate vehicles, we took with us everything we could stuff in and between our boxes, and headed west. Our destination: Walla Walla, Washington.

Awaiting us was a one week booking at a Motel 6, and the promise of an opportunity for me to work as a harvest intern at a local, premium winery. Jordan, while being very hirable and sporting a Bachelor’s degree in Hospitality and Tourism Management, would be arriving unemployed.

For those of you unfamiliar with the business, a harvest intern is the lowest rung on a winery’s ladder. The job is full of long, stressful hours, surrounded by plenty of machines and chemicals that could seriously injure or even kill you. Your job is to show up whenever the cellar master calls and follow his instructions from the moment you arrive until the moment he says “go home.” There is no 9am-5pm. Hours are unpredictable, and you are unemployed when the roughly three month season is over. read more…

Tastings: The Rhône

Tastings: The Rhône

At the moment I am involved in the WSET level 3 program. Throughout the program, there are recommended tastings in which the student is given a list of wine styles, and is expected to taste and interpret each of those styles. While there is nothing guaranteeing that a student will taste all of these wines, I cannot stress enough how vital tasting practice is. Learning about wine by simply reading; would be as if you were attending an art history class where you were only given explanations of paintings and styles used, but you were never able to actually see the image. Wine is art, and to truly understand it, you must taste it. (more…)

Studying Wine: Creating Quizzes for AVAs

So I’ve been spending some time lately studying for an upcoming test. For this test I need to learn just under 40 American Viticultural Areas in addition to wineries and important people influential to those regions. That is a lot of data so I needed to find a few ways to organize the information into an easily understood and cost-effective delivery system to study from.

I have begun working on creating small quizzes for myself with each of these AVAs. The one below is mostly just re-arranged material from my study guide; organized in a way where I can reinforce knowledge without read more…

How Napa Valley Came To Be

While searching for information on Stag’s Leap District I came across some very interesting information regarding the formation of the Napa Valley. This isn’t for everyone but I figured I’d share anyways because I thought the research was cool. read more…

A Look at Stag’s Leap District

My current studies have been directed toward the American Viticultural Areas of Napa Valley and I felt like doing a writeup on Stag’s Leap District (SLD). Since I’ve left school my ability to reference things and perform some proper research has dwindled a bit, so I figured I’d get some practice and begin re-honing my skills with this post. Without further ado, here’s what I have taught myself about SLD. read more…

Moving Forward


A lot of time has passed since I last uploaded anything of reasonable significance to this site. There are many reasons for my silence. A bit of writers block, some self-questioning, a lack of motivation, and a seeming need of time. Rest assured, I do not live a life which lacks material to write about, I’ve simply experienced a shift in career motivation.

I began this blog to document my transition into a life worth pursuing. Turning a longtime passion of mine into a full-time lifestyle and saying goodbye to the 9 to 5.

While this leap did not go completely as I imagined it, read more…

Chawel Review

Chawel Review

Chawel Sport Basic

Price: $30

Weight: 13.7oz with stuff sack

A few months ago I was introduced to the Chawel, an interesting and mildly amusing take on the standard towel. Admittedly, my first impressions turned me off from the product. For some reason I expected a bit more from the Chawel’s design. However, after keeping the Chawel in my car and eventually brining it to Iceland, I can truly support this product and its usefulness.

To begin, a quick introduction to the Chawel. The Chawel is a multifunctional towel invented by a man named Dan Plante, who saw a need for a portable changing room that could allow patrons to easily switch clothes on a beach or in other public areas. Dan executed his idea by designing the swiss army knife of towels, dubbed, the Chawel. The Chawel comes in a few different versions but I am reviewing the Sport Basic, a five function towel which can be used as a classic towel, a blanket, a sleeping bag liner, a neck pillow, and, of course, a changing room.

So let’s break this down into the five separate functions. We’ll start with the towel first.


The Chawel works great as a towel and has plenty of absorbency. I have not tested this, but you could probably dry off four or more people with just one Chawel. read more…