J.C. Somers Vintner
J.C. Somers is the collaboration between Jay Christopher Somers and his longtime partner and wife Ronda Newell-Somers. The label displays the new moon, which signifies a new phase in their winemaking adventures. After founding and developing the J. Christopher brand starting in 1996, they are returning to their roots producing small quantities of focused, elegant, and terroir-driven wines made from the best sites in the Willamette Valley.
Jay and Ronda a member of The Deep Roots Coalition (DRC), which is an advocacy group for the production of wine sourced exclusively from non-irrigated vineyards. The wineries in this group share a vision regarding viticulture, winemaking and long-term viability of Oregon wine. They feel that vineyards must be dry farmed, and that it is the non-irrigated vines that work hardest to produce fruit that maximizes the true terroir. As is often said, wine is made in the vineyard, and it turns out this is true. Some vineyard sites display exceptional terroir, and the Somers have spent 30 years finding these special places that consistently produce wines of great quality.
The philosophy at J.C, Somers is to produce wines in an Old World style that emphasizes focus, length and balance. As Jay says, “We do not make fruit bombs. We want wines that have a fine balance of fruit, acidity and texture. We want wines that give you more than just a big midpalate blast — wines that are complete.” The key to this, Jay firmly believes, is patient winemaking. It is vital not to rush things but to allow the wines to develop naturally. The wines should evolve at their own pace, with minimum intervention. He is taking inspiration from wines of the Old World and applying it to the terroir of the Willamette Valley.
More About Jay Christopher Somers: Owner and native Oregonian Jay Somers has been making wine in the Willamette Valley for more than 30 years, and established the J. Christopher brand in 1996. Working with great winemakers like his mentor John Paul of Cameron Winery and time spent at Adelsheim and Dry River in New Zealand, Jay’s wines are hand-crafted in small lots and are sourced from some of the best vineyards in the Willamette Valley.
When Jay is not busy making wine he is usually playing guitar and composing new music for his band Portland Cement.
More About Ronda Newell-Somers: Ronda has been with Jay since 1991 and has been an important part of the winemaking team since 1996. Beyond the efforts of marketing and sales, she has been in trenches of harvest and the cellar from the beginning. Most importantly is her moral support and ability to make a great cocktail at the perfect time. She is a huge fan of Nebbiolo, Champagne and of course the wines of the "Holy Land" a.k.a Burgundy. Beyond her love for wine, she is very interested in fashion and like Jay a huge music fan. Most recently she has become a certified Peak Pilates instructor, she will be opening a studio in the near future.
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