Cristina Gonzales, Owner & Winemaker, Gonzales Wine Company
Founder, owner and winemaker Sean Allen spent 15 years working as a mechanical engineer before pursuing his passion for winemaking. With physics and engineering degrees and years of science-based learning, viticulture and winemaking came natural to Sean in his training at the acclaimed Chemeketa Wine Studies program.
Originally from Alaska, Sean is an avid outdoorsman who enjoys taking full advantage of all that the Pacific Northwest has to offer including hiking, biking and skiing. Like many winemakers, Sean is also a big foodie. In addition, Sean’s best friend and partner in crime is his chocolate lab Dakota.
In 2004, Cristina Gonzales tasted a silky, lush Malbec that forever changed the course of her life. She was volunteering in South America, and during a trip through Mendoza, Cristina encountered her first distinct food and wine experience: an Argentine steak paired with Malbec. The steak was prepared before her eyes, and the wine was unforgettable. This magical dynamic between food, wine, and friends provided the seeds of inspiration for Gonzales Wine Company.
Fueled by her newfound passion for wine, Cristina got a job in a winery tasting room and then in the cellar of White Oak Vineyards in Healdsburg, California. She worked her first harvest in 2006, and went on to work in cellars throughout Australia, Tasmania, Oregon, and California. A decade of hands-on experience later, Cristina began making wines under her own label.
A single mother, Latina, and self-taught entrepreneur, Cristina resides in Portland with her son, Julian, and Bean, her blue heeler.
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