Defying Convention: The Story of Our Urban Winery
Hello, it's Kirk here! As you all know quite well, our ethos at Resistance Wine Company has always been to resist the ordinary and embrace the unconventional. This principle has continually guided our decisions, shaping Kimberly and I's winemaking journey in unique and unexpected ways. One such decision was our recent purchase of a prospective building – an unexpected move that single-handedly redefined our initial approach to the winemaking industry.
When Kimberly and I settled in Oregon, we envisaged a virtual winery. The plan was seemingly simple: we'd buy grapes, craft our wines at custom crush facilities and trade via e-commerce. Essentially, the super low capital approach. It seemed like most wineries go for a high-capital approach, buying land, planting grapes, building a winery, then a tasting room. They lose money forever in many cases. We really cared about making great wine AND making money! So we wanted to go a different route. However, like all adventurous journeys, our path deviated slightly off-course.
In the heart of Ashland, there stood an enticing edifice that screamed to me of potential. Picture this scenario: it was right in the middle of the COVID-19 pandemic, consumer habits were drastically shifting, and brick and mortar businesses were facing significant challenges. Yet, this building felt like the perfect spot for an urban winery, something different with a touch of the Resistance rebellion!
Now, buying a property in uncertain times, especially one not originally designed for a winery, can be a daunting prospect. The financial strain was a concern, especially as we sought to maintain our standard of high-quality, compelling wines. But sometimes in life, opportunities align in the most astonishing ways.
Just as I was beginning to question if we could afford it, we found out that half the building was already employed as a commercial bakery (OMG does it smell amazing every morning) and already housed a tenant. It was a twist we'd never anticipated, but it meant the rental income could help defray the costs of owning such a space.
So, we did the unexpected, the bold, the perfectly "on-brand" for us – we bought the building!
This structure has a past as diverse as its future. From its beginnings as a manufacturer of underground storage tanks to being beautifully restored and converted into a glass-blowing studio in the '90s, known as the 'Gathering Glass', it has seen quite an evolution. We're excited to add the latest chapter to its rich history.
And boy, what a journey it has been renovating it into a winemaking studio, not to mention a cozy tasting room, and, now, stylish offices for one of our other businesses. It's become a hive for creativity, innovation, and disruption – an extension of our spirits in the heart of this charming town.
In our usual style, we managed to redefine the road map. Now, this repurposed building stands as our next step in the future of Resistance Wine Company. We aren’t quite ready to show it off yet, so stay tuned as we are hoping to open it soon! We can't wait to share this space with you and hope it becomes a destination as unique and captivating as the wines we pour.
Come visit us, and let's raise a glass to resisting the ordinary, and following your dreams, even if it means snapping up a beautiful building amidst a global pandemic. Because, after all, we are Resistance Wine Company. Cheers!