AniChe Cellars is a small family winery located in the beautiful Columbia River Gorge. We make wines with an eye to European tradition with a particularly Washington State sense of terroir and style. Our wines are almost entirely varietal blends, believing that wine varietals are very much like people and dogs, with an egalitarian mixing up of characteristics to create interesting nuances and surprising complexity and beauty (think Halle Berry, mutts and Bordeaux). Our fruit comes from Washington state’s plethora of renowned AVA’s, including our very own Columbia Gorge AVA.
Rachael Horn is the winemaker and owner of AniChe Cellars. Rachael bounced around careers and jobs in public education as a teacher and the hospitality industry for years before embarking on her winery adventure (teaching made her a lavish consumer of wine, restaurants/wine stewarding cultivated her palate). She finally decided what she wanted to be when she grew up in an epiphenomena: the sky opened up, golden light
effused in a stream around her, etc, etc. In short, some poor soul who had been subject to her bountiful enthusiasm over a local winemaker’s vintage asked her “with so much passion for it, why don’t you make wine yourself?” Aha. A few years of self study and home winemaking led to the enrollment into the WSU Enology Cert program, and the birth of AniChe cellars. Rachael is the charming forty-something gal (looks early thirties after a few glasses…) wearing odd clothes and wine stained hands.
(warning* This winemaker is an eno-speak geek. She will rant on an endless yarn about isobutylmethoxlperanzines, or brettanomyces or TDNs, etc. to any unsuspecting visitor. BEWARE. And Forgive her…she was once a teacher and failed writer. Translates to verbosity and nerdy with a touch of social ineptitude )
Todd Mera is an IT guy gone pseudo-winemaker as a result of a desperately underused degree in Biochemistry. He owns AniChe Cellars with Rachael, as a husband and cellar rat. Todd writes the endless checks, picks up heavy barrels, says “yes, dear” as a mantra, and has recently been canonized in the religion of start-up wineries. He is also the CFO (Chief Forklift Operator), early morning taster of wine beakers shoved into his groggy face, and crisis manager of barrel room breakdowns. Asides from this Todd is also an accomplished entrepreneur, from creating start up wineries to creating website services. You can recognize Todd by his long Gandalf-like tresses, Carharts and good humor.
Che Horn is the other namesake of the winery and the genetic progeny of Rachael and Todd. Che is 18 and has no real interest in the winery as of yet, except to earn some cash for odd jobs of heavy lifting and cleaning. During crush, Che shows up and works hard shoulder to shoulder with the rest of us! (secretly cursing wine while pining for the days of cooked meals and a normal life). He currently aspires to make film shorts like this one http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=HMHBwxx8pmU&feature=share
Anais Mera is one of the winery namesakes and genetic progeny of Todd and Rachael. She is also the winery hobbit, useful for getting into tanks for deep cleaning. Ani is currently attending WSU for a Cert in Viticulture and owns a gourmet specialty catering business, Cork and Bottle. Her lovely spreads can often be tasted at events for AniChe Cellars tasting room. Ani is the official press cleaner, as she is the only one who can fit into it. (Did I mention that she is tiny?) In 2011, Ani plans to make a small batch of wine on her own (duh, of course it will be small!) to add to our label. An indispensable asset to the winery, she is hard working cellar rat her mother always wanted her to be. Ani is the short cute thing in Carharts.
Tom Dixon is Ani’s husband and the build-it fix-it guy for the winery. Need a fast makeshift barrel rack? Tom has it done in 5. Need a jig for something? (what is a jig, anyway??) Tom has it made in a jiffy. Next we’ll ask him to cut out a five foot peacock quill feather in 3/4 inch plywood. (Maybe next season…) Tom is also an integral part of the winery projects in his eagerness to work hard and help cheerfully. He is Ani’s partner in Cork and Bottle, and brings a wealth of experience in food prep and service to all of our events. Tom can be recognized by his decidedly French beret and penchant for vintage Woolrich woolens.
Maren Morrison (Once a body double for Kirsten Dunst!) is our Tasting Room personnel and Wine Club Manager. She brings many years in the hospitality industry to our tasting room, offering expertise in service and a dimpled smile. You can be sure to receive a warm welcome and knowledgeable service by Maren, as well as a plate of yummy goodies she pairs with your wine flight!