A unique online marketplace that launched during the height of the pandemic, Wine Gatherings combines an assortment of goods to complement wine as both an experience and an all-embracing link between people, as well as an awakening of wine intellect through a savvy virtual vignette series.
The digital venue was created and founded by South Sound resident and military spouse, Dominque Gordon. Gordon provides quality goods to enhance the relationships between wine and people, while also educating and destigmatizing wine to make it more approachable.
“I really feel that wine is a universal connector and one of my main goals is to get people to feel comfortable and competent,” says Gordon. “Whether that is choosing wine at the grocery store or at a restaurant or having wonderful pairings at their own home.”
Through her vast background and knowledge of wines, Gordon sets the stage with the idea of wine as a key ingredient that ties people’s experiences together.
“Everything is intertwined. From the opening of the bottle to the food pairing, or presentation of a beautiful charcuterie board, or meal,” says Gordon. “Finishing off with a delicious selection of chocolate, all in the creation of a whole experience.”
As a native of the Napa Valley wine region, Gordon has been immersed within the wine industry for most of her life. Growing up as the daughter of an Equipment Vineyard Manager, she would go on to follow her own path within the vast expanse of the Napa wine trade.
In the early days, that began at the Demptos Napa Cooperage, a place where wine barrels are constructed. Here, she learned the processes that go into building and toasting wine barrels, along with responsibilities ranging from administrative to inventory, and international shipping.
As she continued to explore different aspects of the field, she became a member of the elegant Napa Valley Wine Train team, offering an exclusive dining and traveling experience through California Wine Country.
With wine becoming as much a lifestyle, as a vocation, she would further her background by engaging with industry-leading clients at the former Napa Valley Vintage Bank.
This followed with Silver Oak Cellars, where Gordon was the Executive Assistant and Special Projects Manager, also heading-up vineyard tours for VIPs like Carlos Santana. It was here that she took a leading role in the rebuilding of the entire campus, as its Internal Project Manager when a flood and fire had destroyed a large section of the property.
Through the years, she has continued to learn and evolve. She has traveled to over 15 countries, some for the specific purpose of visiting vineyards, wine tastings, wine shops, and wineries. This includes the Haro Wine Festival in Northern Spain and actively participating in the Haro Wine Fight.
Last summer she had a chance to visit some of Eastern Washington’s wine country in the Rattlesnake Hills, and Horse Heaven areas of Prosser — a market in direct competition with the Napa Valley, as Washington’s wine production continues to grow.
It brought back the warm and fuzzy feelings she had growing up in Napa. “I feel it’s more farmer-focused, instead of elaborate corporations and massive tasting rooms,” says Gordon. “It was great being back walking the vineyards, that direct consumer-product relationship, within arm’s reach of the grapevines.”
With wine as the core and center of her heart and mindset, Gordon hopes to expand the knowledge of others by introducing a multifaceted vignette series, with 17 different topics to start.
The short virtual segments include subjects like ‘vine talk,’ a brief presentation on the grapevine itself, varietals, growing characteristics, ripening and harvesting details, along with terminology.
“I really want to get people, not only comfortable, but excited about wine, and expand their knowledge,” says Gordon. “Not just academically, but their palette and tasting and trying different wines, rather than the same big four that you hear about all the time — Chardonnay, Pinot Noir, Cabernet Sauvignon, or Merlot.”
For those with a solid foundation, she would like to follow-up with a larger more in-depth video series of fundamentals that will create an even greater understanding and appreciation of wine.
Recently, she led a virtual formal wine tasting event for a local homeowners’ association. The occasion consisted of several components, including the exploration of different wine pairings that went along with an included charcuterie board, and a bottle of vino, and a brief look at specific Washington wines.
In the future, as she continues to pursue her passion, she would like to work with distributors, and individual wineries for the potential to sell wines, as well as partnering with local restaurants for in-person wine tastings when it’s possible to do so.
“Wine Gatherings is a way to really bring it full circle,” says Gordon. “It’s not just wine. It’s people, it’s food, it’s conversation, all of those things that create the whole experience that influences our knowledge, and perspectives about wine.”
Check out Wine Gatherings for curated product collections by Dominque Gordon and join her on a journey of discovery by expanding your knowledge and experience of wine here. Enjoy a ten percent discount on the first-time purchase for readers with code SOUTHSOUNDTALK2021.
Wine Gatherings will also be featured at the upcoming Pine & Moss Small Business Valentine Edition Event, on February 13, from 9 a.m. to 4 p.m. at 1100 Station Drive, Suite 141 in DuPont.