A Concerted Effort

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By M. Kim Lewis

The Olson family includes (from left) Priscilla, 16, Johnny, 21, John, Joy, and Rebekah, 18.
The Olson family includes (from left) Priscilla, 16, Johnny, 21, John, Joy, and Rebekah, 18.

I had already planned to go Dungeness crabbing on the Southern Oregon coast near Coos Bay when I received a request to interview the owners at TeSóAria Vineyard & Winery near Roseburg. No problem. A visit to the Umpqua Valley winery would be the perfect end to an adventure at sea.

After a surprisingly successful time with a cooler full of fresh Dungeness crab and boat in tow, I arrived to meet John and Joy Olson. Their newly built tasting room had a high-ceiling agri-industrial feel. It was set beautifully in their vineyards, not far from the Umpqua River and within view of their home.

John, to my delight, was an approachable winemaker and enthusiastic tasting room diplomat. His wife, Joy, smiled a lot and added color to his multitude of stories. This winery, as is true for most in Southern Oregon, started as a family affair and spread into the community … fast. [ read more ]