About the winemaker

Wine Woman Winemaker Latina Gonzales Wine Company-3634.jpg

Cristina Gonzales is the granddaughter of migrant farm workers from Texas, who moved to Wisconsin to pick cherries in search of a better life. She comes from a long lineage of those who work with their hands.

Her passion for wine began while traveling as a backpacker through South America in 2001 and landing in Mendoza, Argentina, the epicenter of South American Malbec. A fateful meal combining a luscious Argentinian steak and the perfect Malbec was the spark that led Cristina down the path of winemaking and eventually to establishing her own wine brand. She entered the wine industry in 2006 and eagerly absorbed as much information as she could, learning from hands-on experience working harvests in California, Oregon, Tasmania and Australia.

After working as a harvest intern at WillaKenzie Estate in 2007, she fell in love with Oregon and decided to move to Portland in 2009, where she started working for A to Z Wineworks/REX HILL. Cristina took on many different roles there as a cellar hand, lab assistant, warehouse manager and finally as bottling line manager until 2013. In 2010, during her tenure at A to Z Wineworks, Cristina decided to try her hand at winemaking for herself and Gonzales Wine Company was born. Her desire to travel and live abroad led her away from Oregon and back to Latin America for 3 years: this time to Chiapas, Mexico, where she gave birth to her son. During this time, she continued to make wine for her own label in Santa Rosa, California where she still makes wine today. In 2016, Cristina and her family decided to move back to the United States and returned to Portland, Oregon, where she resides today and currently produces wine in both California and Oregon.

Cristina in South America, 2002

Cristina in South America, 2002

 

Gonzales Wine Company

Winemaker Cristina with Julian and Bean

Winemaker Cristina with Julian and Bean

Gonzales Wine Company works with heart and the firm belief that everyone should have access to quality wines. Not just Two-Buck Chuck—we’re talking elegant, old-world style wine delicious enough to enjoy alone, yet dynamic enough to pair with food. 

Our wines are made naturally, with no added yeasts and minimal sulfur, in the heart of Santa Rosa. Because the most important work is done in the vineyard, Cristina works closely with the organic, sustainable vineyards of Northern California to raise fruit meeting her vision and specifications. 

To explore our wine offerings, visit our Shop Wine page. If you'd like to connect with Cristina about her wines and / or possibly carrying them, please reach out on our Contact page.