- On December 22, 2015
Tonight while you shop for last minute gifts, parties, and just stocking up for the holiday weekend we will have a few wines open for you to taste! Two of the wines from a winery called Paetra, Latin for “rock”, have Minnesota connection along with a Zipps connection. Bill Hooper, the winemaker, had part of his beginning in the wine world right here at Zipps along with a few other local shops. He spent a few years working for The Wine Company, a distributor located in St. Paul, and then picked up his family and moved to Germany (where his wife is from) to pursue a style of winemaking that he became interested through his exposure to different German wines in Minnesota as well as his travels with his wife.
Bill enrolled in university for Oenology in Germany and had this to say about program:
“I was extremely impressed with the German apprenticeship system. It is certainly the best, most thorough in the World and the teachers are second to none. Nearly two-thirds of all German winemakers go through the program at one of several colleges around the country. Students are required to take and pass classes relating to all aspects of winemaking, cellar-techniques, equipment operation, farming, and running a business. They are required to work at wineries during this time (normally three wineries in three years to learn different techniques from different philosophies) and to pass written and practical tests conducted by the Chamber of Agriculture. I am quite fortunate to be one of two American Graduates of this school over the past 115 years. It is really quite remarkable to realize that every German resident (even an American) has the opportunity to go to such schools (in most any trade) and not only receive an education, but to get paid to do it. It was truly an incredible experience.”
Photo from paetrawine.com
At the end of his apprenticeship, after being totally immersed in German winemaking and culture, Bill came to the conclusion that in Germany he would be just another German trained winemaker and so they set out to find the perfect place in the U.S. with the climate that was just right to grow and make German style wines. They landed in Willamette Valley, Oregon and Paetra was born. In an area dominated by Pinot Noir, Bill is making Riesling, the noblest of German grapes using all of the techniques he learned in Germany to make the best wines possible. Learn more about his Journey from Minneapolis to Oregon here on the website and come and taste two of the Rieslings (they are really cool wines!) tonight from 4-7pm.