An interview with Meghan Fitzgerald of Precept Wine, contributing author for Edible Inland Northwest, by Shawn Smith. 

SS: How did you get into wine? 

MF: My inspiration for the 2 paper cups article titled: “One Tasting Experience Led Me to Study Enology” featured in Wine Enthusiast was my 28th birthday trip to Walla Walla with my sister Caitlyn. It led me to pursue E&V school and my beginnings with the local wine industry. 

SS: Is there someone in the EV world that you admire, including fellow EV alums? 

MF:  Some alums admired are Chris Wells, Jeff Fernald and my primary team at the school.

SS: What’s special to you about working in the wine industry? 

MF: The industry is special in its versatility, selling wine, and producing it. This is work that I like because no two days are the same. It blends academics, science, and showmanship. 

SS: What are some of the challenges you’ve faced in the industry? 

MF: In the beginning, it was my own self-doubt and misunderstanding of the wine community. I also felt the path forward was not clear for me as well. 

SS: What do you think differentiates and excites you about Washington wine?

MF: WAwine is innovative and different as it is a new frontier in sparkling, still, sweet and dry styles with varying terroir. The varying conditions and several types of terroirs lend itself well to producing an array of wine. 

SS: How do you foresee climate change or social issues affecting the local industry in the next few years? 

MF: Most people will get involved virtually through Zoom with wine kits. The industry will gain greater reach between people and furthermore will gain a greater audience. Climate change will certainly change the growing locations of grapes and some will prosper and others will suffer at the hotter latitudes. 

SS: What are some up-and-coming trends in wine that you’re following? 

MF: I love the idea of going off of traditional winemaking techniques. Love the orange wines and pét-nats. Pretty neat that winemaking can be expressed as an art.

SS: What advice can you share with future EV graduates? 

MF: The Industry has a place for you! It’s vast, and versatile for those in the front-of-the-house and back. Don’t settle! Go for the spot of the industry you want to be in! 

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