Woman-Made Wines in Oregon

BY Montana Rae

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Raise a glass to women in wine as we celebrate Women’s History Month with a lineup of female-made wines from around the world. Explore each remarkable bottle in Denver restaurants and learn the stories of the women behind the wines.

The history of wine spans centuries and is deeply rooted in tradition. Historically, it was uncommon for women to take the helm as winemakers. Today, the wine industry is evolving and many highly regarded wineries are led by strong women who touch and connect with every aspect of production from vineyard to winery to the tables of the remarkable restaurants listed below.

In this article series, you’ll find great wines for every budget produced by dynamic women from around the world in this global wine experience. 

Get to know female winemakers from Colorado, Oregon, New Zealand, and Italy, plus one very ambitious lady from Japan who dared to do it differently and became a saké brewmaster, a role seldom held by a woman in Japan.

Their stories and backgrounds vary, but ties to family, sustainability, and perseverance unite them.

You’ll find their wines waiting for you in the cellars of some of our city’s best restaurants. Prepare to experience the elegance and finesse these woman-made wines bring to exceptional Denver dining rooms.

Jessica Mozeico

Et Fille Pinot Noir at Elway’s Cherry Creek

2500 E 1st Ave Unit 101, Denver, CO 80206

The Woman

Next, we head northwest to Oregon’s Willamette Valley where Jessica Mozeico’s journey in wine began when she was just a girl. Growing up, she assisted her father, Howard, with what started as a garage winemaking project in 1984.

Eventually, Jessica left home to attend college where she earned both undergraduate and MBA degrees. After spending a few years working in corporate America, the passion for winemaking shared by father and daughter called both of them back to wine country and in 2003 they co-founded Et Fille Wines, which translates to “and daughter” in French.

Together, they ran the winery until Howard’s death in 2017. By then, Jessica was a mother to a daughter of her own. Wishing to honor her father’s legacy in wine and nurture it for the future generation, Jessica carried on after his passing creating elegant, complex wines as her father had shown her.

Jessica says, “I have the honor and responsibility to carry Et Fille forward in a manner that is consistent with my dad’s vision, values, and palate. I will continue building the legacy of Et Fille for my daughter.” 

Et Fille is a Certified B Corporation®, an accreditation awarded to organizations that use the power of business to build a more inclusive and sustainable economy. Their commitment to sustainable winemaking, diversity, and equity continue with a goal of uniting family and communities through wine.

Et Fille Willamette Valley Pinot Noir. Image courtesy of Et Fille Winery Instagram.
Et Fille Willamette Valley Pinot Noir. Image courtesy of Et Fille Winery Instagram.

The Wine

The next time you’re in Cherry Creek, stop into Elway’s for a glass or bottle of Et Fille 2019 Willamette Valley Pinot Noir. This beautiful wine is made of 100% Pinot Noir sourced from three very special vineyards in the Dundee Hills, Yamhill-Carlton, and Eola-Amity Hills subregions of Willamette Valley. Of the three vineyards, two are L.I.V.E. Certified Sustainable and the third is farmed organically and biodynamically.

With only 599 cases of this wine produced, it’s a very special tasting opportunity indeed. The hue is vibrant and the aromas of red and black fruits pop out of the glass. On the palate, you’ll taste classic Pinot flavors of cherry, plum, and earth followed by a lovely herbaceousness.

Try pairing this with Elway’s Colorado Rack of Lamb with grain mustard and rosemary crust for a hearty, sustainably sourced dining experience.

Learn more about Jessica and Et Fille Winery here

Check out Elway’s Cherry Creek wine list here


ABOUT THE AUTHOR

Montana Rae

Montana Rae is a CMS Certified Sommelier and WSET Level III residing in Denver, Colorado. She offers private wine tastings, classes, and dinners at clients’ homes and businesses around Colorado, as well as product recommendations, tips, recipes, and more through her company, The Wine Ship. Montana is also a commercial real estate broker specializing in sales and leasing of restaurant and retail spaces in Denver. Contact Montana at montana@thewineship.com and follow her on Instagram @montana.rae.sommelier

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