Erin’s passion for wine grew from his passion for food. While awaiting the start of culinary school he was lucky enough to land a job at a prominent wine shop in the Washington DC area. By tasting and working with extremely knowledgeable and generous wine professionals his interest turned into a passion. He threw himself into the business, eventually becoming manager and buyer for a wine shop and adjacent restaurant and wine bar.
After unexpectedly falling in love he then moved to the northeast and explored the distribution side of the wine business while his girlfriend turned wife became a veterinarian.
After graduation from veterinary school the world seemed limitless to the happily married couple and for some reason, the pin was stuck into Berkeley, California. Boxes were packed and the 2 dogs, 2 rabbits, and cat were loaded into the car destined for the west coast.
Berkeley wasn’t the right fit, but it allowed Jordan to explore the holistic side of veterinary medicine and Erin studied winemaking and viticulture in Napa and Sonoma. This was an irreplaceable experience for him and although he was not always in agreement with his fellow classmates or professors, the education and experience was priceless.
During this time Erin realized that to fulfill his dream of making the most interesting, balanced, and complex wine possible in the US, he needed to move to the Willamette Valley. So the boxes were packed again and the menagerie loaded into the car.
Soon after the move Erin met Russ and Mary Raney of Evesham Wood Winery and his suspicions about the potential for exceptional Pinot Noir were confirmed. Erin has been lucky enough to work the past three harvests with the Raney’s at Evesham Wood and they have been extremely generous to allow Haden Fig to be made there.
The owl and the artist
During her work at the Portland Audubon Society as a volunteer veterinarian, Jordan was enamored with the Northern Saw-Whet owl. This owl is a natural predator for vineyard pests and an essential part of a healthy symbiotic vineyard and ecosystem. Because of this, we chose the Saw-Whet owl for our label as a symbol of our commitment to sustainable agriculture.
The Saw-Whet pictured on the label was created by Eli Halpin for Haden Fig. When we first moved to Oregon we were captivated by Eli’s paintings and her use of vibrant colors. We were very excited when she agreed to paint the Saw-Whet owl for our label. More of her work can be seen at www.EliHalpin.com.