Podcast – Kathryn Hermann from 00 Wines

Kathryn Herman

I was talking with Kathryn Hermann from 00 Wines in April, and she was trying to get me to interview her husband, Chris, and winemaker Matt Perry. My gut told me it would be a great interview in an instant, but I wanted a story that most people haven’t already heard. So I looked Kathryn in the eye and said, “I want to interview you and tell your story.” I could not read her face, but she said, “Ok.”

The following week I sent her an email getting a date on the calendar, but she and Chris were getting ready to head out for a whirlwind trip to France. When she returned, I touched base again, and the interview was set up for June 10th. So finally, almost three months later, I am releasing the episode for you to enjoy.

Why the three months wait? Well, five words, time management, and batch processing. This year has been exciting getting interviews set up, processed, and out the door, along with the newsletter. I am still figuring things out and haven’t planned Harvest into my interview process. I have a hunch that there will be weeks without a podcast episode to release in the near future.

Grammar police disregard the next paragraph.

Getting back to Kathryn Hermann. I want everyone to know her full story of growing up in Maine, moving to Boulder, Colorado, getting into the tech scene, winning an Oregon Entrepreneur Award, and how she passed up an amazing opportunity to taste blends with Mike Etzel Jr. for 00 way back in the day.

Before listening/watching the episode, you might want to read a long newsletter I did last year for 00 Wines. I dive into Chris’s history and how his dad got into the Oregon Wine scene. If you want to continue a deep dive on 00, here is a Drinking on the Job podcast episode with Chris Hermann and another episode on the Cool Change podcast with Chuck Allen (the first 00 club member).

Before I give you links for YouTube, Apple Podcasts, and Spotify, I feel you also need to know the wines from 00 score significantly off the charts. Over the last several years, I feel like 00 has gone from an underground Oregon Winery one needs to take notice to a global luxury brand. Their current membership has a waitlist, and I am sure James Suckling giving them 99 points for their Chardonnay doesn’t hurt.

Chris and Kathryn are way more than a dynamic duo. Chris has the knowledge to ensure the wine is impeccable. Kathryn has a background in tech startups and how to market a brand for exposure. Together they have executed a vision of helping Oregon Chardonnay do more than get on the map.

Without further delay, please enjoy this 79-minute conversation with Kathryn Hermann from 00 Wines, and any love via a like, comment subscription is always appreciated beyond belief!

Kathryn Hermann Transcription

A.J.: Cheers to another episode of the wine note podcast on your guide, PJ wine Jule on this journey of story, showcasing the people behind the wonderful world of wine, where we dive into conversations ranging from PIR, viticulture to favor music superpowers, and more. Please enjoy this episode of the winos podcast, Catherine.

A.J.: Uh, thank you so much for joining me today on the podcast. I, I really, uh, appreciate it.

Kathryn Hermann from 00 Wines: Wonderful. Thank you so much for having me,

A.J.: AJ. Yeah, most definitely. Oh, you know, I have to tell you, you know, you, uh, you know, you, you stopped by earlier today and dropped off that, that bottle of wine. I opened it up and oh my goodness.

A.J.: That is, that is quite something.

Kathryn Hermann from 00 Wines: Yeah, it really has integrated nicely. And uh, yeah, I guess we can tell the audience, this is a really special and specific wine. Maybe we can wait until the end. We’ll build anticipation and we’ll talk about it. Yeah, most I’m so happy that you enjoyed it because it really has been on a journey since you first tasted it.

Kathryn Hermann from 00 Wines: It, it has

A.J.: been. And, you know, I had to look back in my journal and the first time, uh, you know, I got to kind of be a part of that wine was, you know, it’s October 29th, uh, 2020. And, uh, it has been quite, it has been on quite some journey, so I can’t wait to, uh, hear more about it. Excellent. So I found this, uh, this quote and, uh, I, you know, I thought it was, would be a great spot to start.

A.J.: You have the power to be your own superhero, the little girl that you once worth relying on you to be the woman she dreamed of becoming, uh, do you feel that you have become your own superhero?

Kathryn Hermann from 00 Wines: Oh, gosh. Um, that’s a great question and a very good quote, especially for you to find as a girl, dad. Um, I know we’ve talked a lot in the past about how important it is to, um, yeah.

Kathryn Hermann from 00 Wines: Raise, raise daughters with lots of inspiration and enthusiasm. So do I feel like I’ve become my own superhero? Um, Hmm. Maybe , um, in a farming community, we just rely on each other so much that, um, sometimes I wake up feeling like I have I’m in control and I have, um, the power to change things and, and sometimes working in the world of wine uh you’re at the mercy of what nature gives you.

Kathryn Hermann from 00 Wines: So,

A.J.: uh, yeah, I, yeah, and I, you know, in, in all honesty, I think you’re being, uh, uh, you need to, I think you need, need to toot your horn a little bit more. You’ve been qu quite a, quite a journey. Uh, And hopefully we can, you know, kind of tell everybody about your journey and, uh, you know, it all kind of started up, you know, when you, you know, you grew up in Maine and you had like 20 or 30 cousins, and that was, uh, that was something, but I I’m curious, you seem to be like a fan of the original, super Mario brothers.

A.J.: And, uh, did you play super Mario like with, with your cousins or like how did that, how did that happen?

Kathryn Hermann from 00 Wines: Oh, absolutely. That’s a really good question. Um, so I was born in 1984 in, um, really rural small town. New England, Maine. And, um, my father is a musician and he was really, really big into electronics. So even though we grew up in nature in the woods very far away from any sort of modern culture, um, my father always had.

Kathryn Hermann from 00 Wines: Computers and synthesizers musical equipment, PC magazine, Mac world. If you remember when those were actually printed magazines. Yep. Yep. And, um, so I grew up with a lot of geeky things around, thanks to my dad, including the original Nintendo. And we didn’t have any rules about video games or screens or anything because on the weekends, my dad was always clicking around on his electronics.

Kathryn Hermann from 00 Wines: And so my sister and I would be downstairs in our playroom, um, playing super Mario. And, uh, my sister, Chelsea is two years younger than me. Right. And she’s very, very competitive. So we had the, the dualling, you know, back when you could play video games and there were like six buttons on the controller um, so, uh, playing Mario against each other.

Kathryn Hermann from 00 Wines: And then we got into Sonic the hedge. As children of the, the late eighties and early nineties do so. Yes.

A.J.: Yes. Most definitely. Yeah. I mean, I, I would play, uh, super Mario brothers, you know, all the time by myself and, you know, on, you know, on the cassette player, I’d have guns and roses, appetite for destruction going and just, it was a perfect accompany accompaniment.

A.J.: Uh, I would tell my daughter about that, you know, and she’s like, what? That’s no, that sounds awful. And I’m like, no, it was really good.

Kathryn Hermann from 00 Wines: It was a lot of fun growing up back then, uh, back before we all, all had iPads and iPhones. Um, but for me, it’s, you know, those days were very influential that really shaped me into the person I am because now, um, making wine and living in Willamette valley, we are so tied to nature.

Kathryn Hermann from 00 Wines: Like I said before, however, I really enjoy the creative and the artistic side of communications. Um, so I never feel like I’m living in a world of, you know, digital creation or tied to the land. I feel like I’m living in this middle place where we can really be in touch with nature and spend time in the natural world, but also, um, you know, use all the digital tools and creative, uh, tools available to us to really tell the story of what we’re doing.

Kathryn Hermann from 00 Wines: And a lot of that goes back to living in this world of the natural world without a lot of culture around, but also with all these digital, um, and electronic machines that I love so much.

A.J.: Yeah. Yeah, no, it, it seems, you know, that you were, um, your, your upbringing was, you know, very close knit and, you know, you had a lot of lessons that you had to go through and kind of like some, some rights of passage, a little bit, you know, like firing your, your grandpa’s rifle.

A.J.: Um, What was that for? Like the, the first time? I mean, I know you had to fire the rifle and you had to like drive a car across the still bridge and whatnot, but like yeah. Were you, were you scared to all get out just firing that rifle for the first time? And you’re like, oh no, I got this.

Kathryn Hermann from 00 Wines: Um, I think I was like, I got this.

Kathryn Hermann from 00 Wines: Well, I, I know you’re referencing this really great, um, interview, the Oregon wine history archives, where I talked about these stories growing up in rural Maine. Um, and I know that you’ve been interviewed as well. If you are watching and you have not checked out the Oregon wine history archives, there are hundreds and hundreds of interviews of all of your favorite people who are here in the LA valley.

Kathryn Hermann from 00 Wines: So check that out. Um, but I. You know, my family has some land in a little town called Bethel Maine, and it’s one of those towns that, uh, the poet Robert Frost wrote about, um, Henry Wadsworth, long fellow, the great poet of Portland Maine wrote about towns like this as well. Um, they never changed. And so we have a little camp there and my great-grandfather, his nickname was zip.

Kathryn Hermann from 00 Wines: So it’s called zips place. And we have a Rite of passage in the family. Well, I should say something about the culture of Maine, because it’s very specific. And if you haven’t been there, it’s hard to understand, but it’s in a very, very cold climate. We are the most Northeast of all states in the us, and we’re very, very close to Canada.

Kathryn Hermann from 00 Wines: So most people have not been to Maine and most people who grew up in. don’t leave Maine. So it’s a very insular place. Um, and it’s very, very cold and very harsh. It’s not like the beautiful cold, fluffy, snowy weather of Colorado where you just wanna get out there and ski and snowboard, right? It’s like that harsh, icy crust on the snow, uh, the bone chilling cold.

Kathryn Hermann from 00 Wines: And for many generations, people lived there and they were just in survival mode. Um, so it’s a very, uh, like hard culture and very interested in self sufficiency. So even though we have all the modern conveniences now, I think that still sort of runs through the culture. So when I was growing up, um, speaking of self sufficiency, everyone in my family went to this camp in Bethel, and we went through a Rite of passage where when you turn 13, you learn how to shoot a deer rifle and you learn how to drive the car.

Kathryn Hermann from 00 Wines: And I’m not sure if we’ll still be doing that with the next generation. It seems a little unsafe now that I think about it. but, um, But, uh, we had this really, really old Cadillac car and in my generation it was all girls. So my family said, okay, girls, we’re, we’re gonna do this. Um, and my cousins and my sister are fantastic at driving.

Kathryn Hermann from 00 Wines: And I came to my, my turn to drive across the steel bridge. Um, it’s one lane and I got a little scared. So the great family story that everybody still laughs at is that I swerved a little bit and I scraped the entire side of the car on the bridge. Oh no. Yeah. I’m a better driver now. Uh, but no one will let me, will let me forget that.

Kathryn Hermann from 00 Wines: And, uh, we have a sandpit near our camp and I learned how to fire a deer rifle. Guns are personally not my thing, but I think in terms of, um, a life story, it, my family really taught me how to be a self-sufficient independent young woman and they never treat us, treated us any different than the boys in the family.

Kathryn Hermann from 00 Wines: And I really appreciate that. And I think that is a thread that. Flows into my, um, leadership style today. Yeah.

A.J.: No, and, and I totally agree. And you know, um, your aunt wanted to, to take you to Paris when you were 16 and you know, you’re like, I wanna go, I wanna go. But your parents were like, no, you can, well, you can go, but you have to, uh, you know, you have to pay your own way, you know?

A.J.: So you worked at the ice cream store and whatnot, and I’m kind of curious at that time, what was your favorite flavor of ice cream?

Kathryn Hermann from 00 Wines: Ooh, that’s a good story. So yeah, I worked in the summertime at Ben and Jerry’s ice cream scoop shop. And, uh, I rode my bike one way every day to the ice cream shop. And then my father picked me up and drove me home at night.

Kathryn Hermann from 00 Wines: So, um, I did save all of my, I saved my paycheck all summer long and paid my own way to Paris and my, uh, favorite flavor. And it remains my favorite flavor today is peanut butter cup classic. Oh, oh, okay. That’s awesome, but it can’t, it can’t be the peanut butter cup that is just like peanut butter flavored with the chocolate swirl.

Kathryn Hermann from 00 Wines: It has to have large chunks of actual peanut butter cups. That way you’re eating kind of like a candy bar and ice cream together. Okay.

A.J.: No, that, that makes complete sense. Yeah, no, that, that is, uh, I was just curious. Oh, why do you know, like when you were in Paris with, you know, with your aunt at, at 16, you know, you know, there was, you have, you’ve mentioned like, you know, you didn’t say a word or anything.

A.J.: Were you just, just taking it all in or is just kind of a culture shock or like, do you, do you agree with, you know, all the stories saying that, you know, that you didn’t say anything?

Kathryn Hermann from 00 Wines: Oh yeah. That’s um, that’s a good point. So when we, so my aunt who decided to bring me there, she is the cool. Single aunt.

Kathryn Hermann from 00 Wines: She’s always the one who has been very cultured. She was, um, a costume designer in the Shakespeare, um, troop in Ashland, Oregon for many, many years. And she got involved in the deaf theater and was actually one of the first hearing students to go to gala debt, the deaf university in Washington, DC. Um, and she’s always traveled the world.

Kathryn Hermann from 00 Wines: So she remains an inspiration to me. Um, when I was growing up in this very insular community, she always brought me to art museum. She brought me to Boston. She brought me to New York. And so finally when I turned 16, she said, I, I wanna bring you out of the country. I wanna show you Paris and we’ll have a girl’s trip.

Kathryn Hermann from 00 Wines: It’ll be fantastic. Um, and it, for me, it was such a culture shock because that was, um, but I guess that would’ve been the year 2000. Yeah. So that was really before you could just. Get on the internet and look at a travel blog. I mean, we were on the internet of course, but it was very, very hard to, to find real life information and photos and videos about what I was getting into.

Kathryn Hermann from 00 Wines: So I don’t think anything could have prepared me for what I saw. And, uh, it was just, it was a visual cultural and like sensory overload. I mean, the smells are different. It obviously looks very different. I couldn’t speak French at all. Um, and I, I just wanted to absorb everything. So yeah, for me, I, I really have the mind of a writer.

Kathryn Hermann from 00 Wines: I view everything like a story, so I just wanted to be there and, and soak everything up. And I absolutely. . Yeah,

A.J.: no, it, it is so fun to just observe and just, just take everything in as, as much as possible. I, um, you know, I’m quite the introspective person myself and, uh, just taking it all in is, is always a, a pleasure.

Kathryn Hermann from 00 Wines: Oh, absolutely. Yep. And so I, for me, my treat food is definitely a pock a lot, all the time. I love it. I ate one every day when I was there and at the Carleton bakery in Carleton, Oregon, they, they make fantastic pock a lot. Ooh.

A.J.: All right. I have to remember that one next time. Okay. I will definitely remember that.

A.J.: Oh, so you, you made the comment that, you know, those who, uh, grow up in Maine, you know, stay in Maine mm-hmm , but uh, you know, you followed your sister out to, out to Boulder. so like how, what made her go out and then what, like what made you like wanna follow her and like leave Maine and like leave, leave the bird’s nest?

Kathryn Hermann from 00 Wines: Oh, absolutely. Yeah, that was my next spot. So, um, my cool aunt again, she moved to Denver, um, and my sister moved out there as well, and I always heard fantastic stories about what they were doing and, and their lifestyle. And when I was in college, I spent, um, two years in New York city after I left Maine.

Kathryn Hermann from 00 Wines: And that was a lot of fun, but I was having so much fun living the, uh, writerly life in the west village that I knew that if I wanted to get my degree, which is very important to me that I needed to go back to Maine and just hunker down and, and get it done. And then I would go back out into the world.

Kathryn Hermann from 00 Wines: So, um, at that point I was really into endurance sports and my sister was there and I wasn’t really sure what I wanted to do with the rest of my life. Um, so I just. Packed my backpack after college and came out with my bicycle and crashed at my aunt’s house and decided that I would just let life happen to me, which I guess is a rightly thing to do as well.

Kathryn Hermann from 00 Wines: When you’re thinking about the story of your life. And I was, um, living in Denver with my aunt and I started working for a digital agency, um, in downtown Denver doing marketing for clients. And I really, really enjoyed that. I love the lifestyle. And then, um, after about a year in Denver, I moved to Boulder, Colorado, which is not that far away, but a completely different world.

Kathryn Hermann from 00 Wines: And that’s when I really entered the world of technology startups. And, um, that was, yeah, Boulder was the place where I really, you know, grew into myself and saw my future in front of me. Yeah, no,

A.J.: that, that is great. Um, so being a bicyclist myself, right. Um, You were doing triathlons, but like, did you, when I talked to some triathlons, they’re like, yeah, I’d really like the swimming.

A.J.: I like the running, but I really hate the bicycling. What part do you like all three parts of it or, you know, was there one that, uh, you preferred one over the other?

Kathryn Hermann from 00 Wines: Ooh, that’s a good question. You know, surprisingly, I enjoy the swimming part the best I wish I could say cycling. Sorry, AJ. Um, it’s okay.

Kathryn Hermann from 00 Wines: swimming is my favorite. And, um, when I was in Maine, I grew up, um, across the street from one of the large lakes in the lake region. And so I went swimming every single day and it’s so freeing. I love, I love open water swimming in lakes. So I really hadn’t been swimming for a long, long time when I decided to start training for triathlons.

Kathryn Hermann from 00 Wines: So I got a membership at the local, Y M C a when I was in Maine, before I went to Boulder and I just loved it because. It’s so meditating and I have a brain that doesn’t turn off. So when you’re swimming labs and you’re just looking at the bottom of the pool, um, you can’t hear anything , you can’t see anything you’re just really alone with your thoughts and you’re breathing.

Kathryn Hermann from 00 Wines: And I love it so much. So when I went out to Boulder, of course, it that’s the place in the United States where all the professional triathletes train, uh, because it’s high altitude. And so we had public pools outside that were like Olympic size. Beautiful, gorgeous. Wow. Yeah. So I, I enjoy swimming and now, um, I’m here at my office in McMinville Oregon, in wine country, and a few blocks away.

Kathryn Hermann from 00 Wines: We have the McMinville aquatic center and that’s where you’ll find me a few days a week still swimming laps. That’s

A.J.: great. Yeah. Oh yeah. No, I didn’t know that you still swam, so that’s, that’s great.

Kathryn Hermann from 00 Wines: Yeah, I think it’s good for good for stress relief and. Yeah. Keeps me busy.

A.J.: Yes, no, I totally understand. So going from like a writer’s perspective and then like getting the startup bug, I, I call it mm-hmm like, what, what was it that about startups that really, uh, attracted you?

Kathryn Hermann from 00 Wines: Well, you know, when I was in school and when I went out to Colorado, before I got involved in the startup world, um, I really saw myself as a writer and I really was interested in writing the next great American novel. So I’ve always done some freelance work and I’ve been published in a few places, but I quickly realized coming from a self-sufficient family that, um, it was up to me just like I paid my way to Paris.

Kathryn Hermann from 00 Wines: I am responsible for paying my way in life and you really don’t make a lot of money as a writer. So I had to come up with an alternative career strategy. And when I was in Boulder, I really. Really met so many fascinating people at one of the local coffee shops called Atlas. It’s now closed, um, on the main street in Boulder called Pearl street.

Kathryn Hermann from 00 Wines: I started going there every day, working remotely. And I saw all these young people who are my age sitting there all day long. just like me don’t you people have jobs. Um, and everyone was a CEO or a startup founder, um, working on a tech startup. So that was very intriguing to me. And that was the time in Boulder, where there was a program that just started, it was called tech stars.

Kathryn Hermann from 00 Wines: And now they have chapters all over the world. And I started working for, um, two programmers and they started a business called daily burn.com and it was the very first, um, iPhone iOS tracker for, um, food and exercise. So that seems kind of like an old idea now, but at the time iOS was brand new and it was.

Kathryn Hermann from 00 Wines: Really exciting. So, uh, these two guys and they had two other programmers, they needed somebody to be the customer service person who enjoyed the culture of fitness and, uh, who would work hard for very little money. So of course I thought that was a great idea. And that was my entrance into the world of startups.

Kathryn Hermann from 00 Wines: Um, and the transition from writing to that was, I don’t know, it seems so different, but, but really, I think some of the, the threads that carry me into the wine industry now, or if you are a writer, you’re always looking at the world through a specific lens of, um, curiosity. And it’s like that with startups too.

Kathryn Hermann from 00 Wines: I mean, when you’re writing you, oftentimes you don’t know what is going to come out on the next page. You just sort of go with it. Um, the same, the same thing happens when you start a company.

A.J.: yes, most, most definitely. Um, and I think at about this time, there was a, a viral video kind of going around for a new show called Portia.

A.J.: Um, I have to ask, did that like video, you know, or that, that series or whatever that show did that, like intrigue you and what, what brought you to Portland? Or like what, what actually brought you to Portland?

Kathryn Hermann from 00 Wines: Yeah. Portland, yeah. Was definitely a part of the story. Uh, very cliche, but so true. So, um, the company that I was working for daily burn was acquired by a company called IAC in New York.

Kathryn Hermann from 00 Wines: And it’s owned by Barry Diller and it’s a big, um, technology, media conglomerate, and they own, um, like Ticketmaster, Vimeo, college humor. Now they own Tinder match, et cetera. So it was like a big TV studio, but for digital. and they said, okay, we’ve been acquired. Everyone’s been working remotely, come to New York.

Kathryn Hermann from 00 Wines: And it was summertime in Boulder. And I looked around and I said, I don’t think so. I have a great lifestyle. I can ride my bike to work. Um, right. I work in the coffee shops. I get to hang out all weekend, have a good time in Manhattan boys. Um, and then after a few months, I, I really realized that I was missing out on a huge career opportunity because as I briefly touched on, I went to school in New York for a few years, but living there as a student and living there as a professional is totally different.

Kathryn Hermann from 00 Wines: So I felt like I had some unfinished business after I left there the first time. So I decided to go back as a professional and I was there for a few years, but I knew that I was not going to be. New Yorker. Um, I lived on the upper west side and I live, I worked down in Chelsea, but I was riding my bike along the Hudson river every weekend and, and training.

Kathryn Hermann from 00 Wines: And I actually, um, you know, took the train out into the Hudson river valley quite often to go to all of the farms out there when I needed a dose of nature. So yeah, I was in my little fourth floor walk up, uh, that was about the size of a closet, um, and Portlandia launched and I started watching it and it was hilarious.

Kathryn Hermann from 00 Wines: It still is hilarious because to be honest, if you go back and watch it after living here, Yep. These characters are based on real people. And I actually know who they are. um, and I knew that I wanted something more permanent in my life, but I didn’t wanna go back to new England. That wasn’t my style. I didn’t wanna go back to Colorado either because I found that culture to be a little bit homogenous, especially after spending time in New York.

Kathryn Hermann from 00 Wines: Um, so I thought let’s go to the Pacific Northwest. I was young enough where, you know, if I didn’t feel the vibe, I wouldn’t have to lay down roots, but I did a checklist and, and Oregon really had, and has everything that I wanted in my life. Um, culture, nature, people from all over the world. Um, living here, moving here, um, the wine country, of course, of course the food scene, the art scene.

Kathryn Hermann from 00 Wines: And I just thought the Oregon vibe is something that. That, uh, I can jive with. So I packed everything up that I had in my little apartment and I drove across the country and I drove to, I remember Venice beach and then took highway one highway. It goes from 1 0 1 to one, or I don’t know, um, the highway, the coastal highway that goes from Venice beach all the way up.

Kathryn Hermann from 00 Wines: And, uh, it was amazing. I remember hitting the Oregon border specifically because, um, everyone started driving really slowly. And then everyone in the left hand lane was really slow as well. And then people were passing on their right hand side when they got frustrated and people still do that. um, but I just remember, you know, going to a storage place, um, in the afternoon, unloading my stuff on the east side, in the Southeast of Portland, and then driving over one of the bridges to the west side, I had rented a, um, place on Airbnb.

Kathryn Hermann from 00 Wines: and it was just so gorgeous and I immediately felt like this is my home more than any other place I’ve lived.

A.J.: Yeah, no, it, it is a great spot. I, you know, I moved up here from Tennessee in 2001 and I, no, there’s no way I, I would ever go back there’s yeah. You know, the rain and like right now, you know, the we’re still in spring when it should be summer.

A.J.: Yes. It’s a little frustrating, but uh, holy cow, I love it up here.

Kathryn Hermann from 00 Wines: So when did you first feel like you lived at home when you came here?

A.J.: Uh, I think pretty much immediately. I mean, it was, I remember, um, it was labor day, 2001 mm-hmm , you know, and then the, the rain’s kind of set in, you know, around October or whatnot, and I’m like, holy cow, it’s raining, it’s raining.

A.J.: It’s rained like 25 days in a row. Holy cow. Um, you know, and you just. You just live with it. I mean, you just have to kind of go with it and live with it and you know, the summers, I mean, that’s, that’s, that’s what I love so much about Oregon is just the summers. They’re beautiful. They’re gorgeous. And yeah, so we pay a price, but I’ll gladly pay the price for the beautiful summers that we have up here.

Kathryn Hermann from 00 Wines: Oh, absolutely. It’s gorgeous. Yes. You know, and I also believe in the, the teir of people, I think about the teir of grapes and, and finished wine all the time. But, um, there are so many people from so many places who have relocated and who are currently relocating to Oregon and the Willamette valley. And just like we like our wine, um, a diverse and complex, um, community is what, what makes us special.

Kathryn Hermann from 00 Wines: So one of the things that was hard for me, especially coming right from New York, um, is it took me a long time to drop my attitude. Because what if you’re listening to this and you’re from the east coast or New York, you have to have an attitude and you have to have a little bit of a sharp elbows because you, if you wanna just get things done, you have to be a little bit abrupt because there’s so many people in such a small amount of space and everyone is just trying to get things done.

Kathryn Hermann from 00 Wines: So it took me a while to chill out and I think I’m still working on that.

A.J.: Well, it, it’s hard to lose that. Um, yeah, but I, I, you know, it seems like you kind of, you know, eventually did find your groove. You, uh, uh, started getting into coding and, you know, in like 2014 you wrote a, a Ruby on rails, social app for vegans and vegetarian of Portland.

A.J.: So, uh, people can interact with events, companies and

Kathryn Hermann from 00 Wines: products. how did you find that? That’s really funny.

A.J.: I did. Yeah. Yeah. And then, uh, also in 2014, you’re at the Irving street kitchen. And that’s where you, uh, first, uh, met

Kathryn Hermann from 00 Wines: Chris. Yeah, absolutely. So I moved directly to the Pearl district in Portland, which is, um, you know, I, I wanted to live a walkable lifestyle and that is a neighborhood that is very close to downtown and, um, has everything you need within a few square blocks.

Kathryn Hermann from 00 Wines: So I was, um, yeah, I was living there and I was a lady about town. I started, I moved from sort of the marketing ad tech side of the tech world, and I learned how to code and I started building my own products and, um, yeah, Irving street kitchen was a restaurant in the Pearl district that was very integral to like the late nineties, early two thousands food scene.

Kathryn Hermann from 00 Wines: Um, R IP. It’s not there anymore. I know, but I, yeah, I met Chris there and I was having a lady’s night. I. Sorry to say AJ, but I think we were there complaining about guys and how I didn’t wanna, I didn’t want, have anything to do with guys for a little while. And of course that’s the, that’s the night that, that I met my significant other and yeah, it was, it’s really fantastic.

Kathryn Hermann from 00 Wines: And Chris and I share a lot of the same, you know, attitudes and lust for life and we love great food and wine and yeah, we hit it off immediately.

A.J.: No, that that is awesome. And you know, I’ll never forget, uh, you know, the story of, you know, Chris saying, Hey, you know, I have, uh, uh, Mikey Etzel and we’re gonna, you know, taste some, some wines.

A.J.: Do you wanna come back and like taste? And you’re like, no, I know you just had no clue. And that’s just, I, I always love that that’s, you know, but you know, that was the first date. Of course, you’re not gonna go back and like go taste wine with two strange guys. Why that only makes complete sense.

Kathryn Hermann from 00 Wines: Exactly.

Kathryn Hermann from 00 Wines: Yeah. So Chris and his father were, um, his father, Richard Herman. They were sort of toying with the idea of starting a little family wine project when I met them. And Mikey Etzel was working on the first few barrels of Pinot noir. And, um, they were actually working on tasting all the, the individual, the seven individual barrels to make the very first VGR very good red blend for the 2014 vintage.

Kathryn Hermann from 00 Wines: So we have that in library and sometimes we like to open a bottle and it’s a really funny story because Chris did invite me to that blending session and I should have said yes, but I did say no because you know, right from a lady, I wanna protect my time. Um, so now when we open it, he always refers to it as his creation.

Kathryn Hermann from 00 Wines: And he makes fun of me because I wasn’t allowed in the blending where I didn’t allow myself to go to the blending. But now, um, I’m very adamant that both Chris and I, uh, participate in every single blending session from now on.

A.J.: Yeah, no, that, that is awesome. Oh, in 2016 you went up to Seattle for a startup weekend.

A.J.: What, uh, I’m just, I couldn’t find what projects or anything that you worked on. What, what were you working on for that startup?

Kathryn Hermann from 00 Wines: Well, um, when I arrived in Portland, I was very interested in the startup community. Um, just like I am here in Willamette valley and the wine community. And I find that there are a lot of like-minded people who are very creative.

Kathryn Hermann from 00 Wines: So there were a number of startup events that I was interested in working on. Um, I think for that one, I was a judge for one of the, the local startup weekends, which was very fun because, um, I don’t, I don’t think they do them anymore. It was sort of like a time and place, but people would get together for the weekend and come up with a startup idea.

Kathryn Hermann from 00 Wines: And then by the end of the weekend, you would have to design and pitch your product.

A.J.: Yeah, no, I very much remember startup weekends. I’m like, oh, I wanna do that. Ugh, I can’t, but I wanna do it. Ugh. So yeah, no, I, a little bit of envy over here, so I’m glad you got to participate in one.

Kathryn Hermann from 00 Wines: Yeah, I mean, I think there.

Kathryn Hermann from 00 Wines: You know, I, I hope that people are still doing them because, you know, just like what you’re doing with, um, your app, uh, wine notes and your podcast and all of the, the media work that you’re doing to promote the wines of the alum valley. I think that, um, you can fully express yourself in projects like this, and it takes innovative people who say, I haven’t done this before, but I’m just gonna go ahead and, and do it to bring something into the world.

Kathryn Hermann from 00 Wines: So anyone who’s an entrepreneur who, who starts something I, I commend and startup weekend was a little bit crazy. People would have the craziest ideas and sometimes sort of roll your eyes and say, okay, like you wanna make electronic, uh, crystals that change color with your mood. Okay. And then the judges would say, how exactly are you gonna, are you gonna bring this to market?

Kathryn Hermann from 00 Wines: It was sort of like the community based version of shark tank. E

A.J.: exactly. Yeah. Most definitely. Yeah. Uh, as we kind of roll into 2017, that was a huge year for you. Uh, and one of the things I found interesting was, uh, I think also around that time, you know, mark Zuckerberg was, you know, pretty much, yes. I wear the same outfit every single day.

A.J.: You know, Steve jobs, I wear the same outfit every single day. And, uh, you know, you kind of had that same mentality and I’m curious, do you, do you feel the same way of like, you know, wearing the same outfit every single day to cut down on that, uh, design fatigue? Or are you like, no, I want to be more creative or I’ve grown beyond that, or like, I’m just I’m share your thoughts.

A.J.: I’m super

Kathryn Hermann from 00 Wines: curious. Oh yeah. So, um, around that time I started, um, an app. Well, I was working for a, a development company called dev now in Portland, and we worked on a variety of client apps for. Um, for Nike, for example, and Columbia, et cetera. And at that time I decided to start, um, an app called scout savvy, which would help, you know, women and, um, and people from diverse backgrounds find jobs for them based on the values that they were interested in in 2017.

Kathryn Hermann from 00 Wines: So I was very like, I, you know, I’m a millennial and so I’m like very immersed in the time. So at that time, Facebook was very, very exciting. Twitter was very exciting. This is before Facebook owned Instagram, this is before TikTok existed. Um, so it was a very dynamic fun. Um, culture to be involved in, especially if you’re technically inclined.

Kathryn Hermann from 00 Wines: So there were a lot of sort of ancillary values that came with this and everyone was worshiping Steve jobs. I think, you know, when the first iPad came out and when every new iPhone would come out, it was like a big thing. When Steve jobs was still alive, you would go to the apple store. And let me know if you did this, AJ.

Kathryn Hermann from 00 Wines: I bet. Oh yeah, I totally did it stand in line, stand in line for the next generation. Oh yeah. I remember when I was in Boulder, I even, I knew someone who worked at the apple store there. I tried to bribe him bribe with cupcakes, but he wouldn’t like cut the line. So, um, no, yeah, it’s very much a cultural thing.

Kathryn Hermann from 00 Wines: Did you participate in any of that excite.

A.J.: oh, totally. I mean, when the iPad came out, um, I was, you know, in line at Bridgeport, in lake Oswego with my stepson, it was raining. It, I didn’t care. We were both out in the rain waiting and just got that first iPad. And it was, you know, I remember waiting hours and hours and hours in line for the new iPhone and in some respects, yeah.

A.J.: From a process standpoint, it is, uh, much easier to just pre-order one and get it the day of deliver to your door. But, you know, there’s just something magical about waiting in line and getting that next, that next device. I, I kind of miss

Kathryn Hermann from 00 Wines: it. Oh yeah. Yeah. And there’s a community thing about it too, that I really liked.

Kathryn Hermann from 00 Wines: Um, but yeah, it was very much of a time. And I think that I’ve, I’ve outgrown a lot of that because of everything that we’ve seen with, um, the scandals at Facebook, uh, Steve jobs has. Sort of passed away. And so that the cult of Steve jobs is gone. And then there was the whole, um, Theo Elizabeth Holmes scandal, where she was completely rip, like ripping off of being the, the next young female Steve jobs.

Kathryn Hermann from 00 Wines: Right. So, uh, I think I’ve gotten over some of that, but there are, are lessons that I totally learned from that period in my life. Um, a lot of lessons about entrepreneurship, how to build a company, how not to, how to responsibly integrate technology and into what I’m doing. And, you know, I, sometimes I go through themes.

Kathryn Hermann from 00 Wines: I was thinking about this the other day, I went through a theme where I was wearing black quite often. Um, kind of like Picasso went through his blue period right now I’m in the yellow period. So I’m going yellow now. Nice. Uh, part of it is to match the, uh, yellow wax capsules that we have on the double zero wine Chardonnay.

Kathryn Hermann from 00 Wines: So, um, we’ve been in lockdown and the pandemic’s been crazy. We haven’t really traveled for a few years, but now we’re starting to do events. And so my goal is to wear yellow at every event. No,

A.J.: that is, that is awesome. Oh, right before your launch party or, uh, you had your launch party for scout savvy in may, and then you also got a, uh, a nice little award and you kind of reflected back on that event and you wrote before the program began, I booked it for the bathroom while everyone called, uh, what’s called to take their seats and the convention center ballroom.

A.J.: I didn’t have to go. I just wanted to stand in the stall, facing the closed door and have a few moments by myself. Don’t ask it’s an introvert thing. Have you gotten over the introverted thing or, you know, do you still find yourself at times, like when you’re pouring for James suckling where you just need, you know, just a few moments of like,

Kathryn Hermann from 00 Wines: Hmm, I definitely have not gotten over the introvert thing.

Kathryn Hermann from 00 Wines: um, yeah. So the award ceremony that you’re referring to is the, um, technology association of Oregon, um, has an award ceremony every year. It’s called, I think it’s called the Oregon tech awards. And, um, when I built this app scout savvy, I really am proud of it. It was a really fantastic product. Um, and I remember we had the winery at that time, but it was still a little thing.

Kathryn Hermann from 00 Wines: We didn’t know that it was gonna turn into this. You know, big business. And I was at a dinner party in Portland one night, and one of our friends turned to us and said, okay, you’ve got this winery thing, Chris, Catherine, you’ve got this, um, app thing you’re doing. And Chris, you’re still working full time as an attorney.

Kathryn Hermann from 00 Wines: What are, what are you guys doing here? What’s going to happen? Right. And we just said, you know, we are very excited about everything we’re working on and we made a deal together that whatever would, whichever company would sort of, um, become the exciting rocket ship. Then we would totally both as a couple orient that way.

Kathryn Hermann from 00 Wines: So, um, at the time scout savvy was really exciting. I got an award for pre-revenue company, which sounds really silly for people who are not in the tech world, because it’s like, if you don’t have any revenue, are you really a company? But, um, at that time in the, in the tech startup world, it was really all about users and growth.

Kathryn Hermann from 00 Wines: So now I actually still have that award, um, In my office because it kind of makes me laugh as I’m processing orders. Now we actually do have revenue at the winery so, um, but that was an exciting moment because I knew that entrepreneurship was my path. Um, I still do enjoy writing is a part of what I do, but I really enjoy the, the thrill of creating something and bringing it into the world.

Kathryn Hermann from 00 Wines: So you’re asking about introversion and am I over it? No, I think my personality is very introspective and internal, but I’ve really put myself out there, especially after that moment, because I feel like if you put in, um, so much creative effort, especially with a team to bring something into the world, it’s like a duty you must then.

Kathryn Hermann from 00 Wines: Introduce people to it. Right. So I don’t, I don’t view it as something that’s difficult. I just view it as something I enjoy the creation part. Um, right. I think more than I do the, the presentation part, but now when I get out and I, I do tastings and I travel and we’re meeting with reviewers, I really do enjoy it because to me, it’s sort of like the end game of the creative process that I enjoy the most.

Kathryn Hermann from 00 Wines: And I love it when I get, you know, Instagram photos of people, um, drinking our wine emails, saying, oh, I, I had a special night last night, I opened up one of your bottles and here’s what I thought about it. So I really, really enjoy that. But I also do take a, a moment, um, before every reviewer meeting for.

A.J.: well, yeah, I, I can only imagine. I mean, having James suckling come over and like, you know, you know, at your house there in Carlton and like taste your wines. I mean, that had to, I would’ve been like, okay, I can’t mess up kind of thing and just a little bit beside myself so I can, I, I get it.

Kathryn Hermann from 00 Wines: Yeah. I think, um, whenever you are working to create something, there’s always a, a judgment of something when you put it out in the world, even if you’re not getting scored against your peers by a wine critic.

Kathryn Hermann from 00 Wines: And yeah, one of, one of the personal lessons I’ve learned recently is that it’s important to just do it authentically and do it because you love it. And then what you produce people will either like, or not like. , you know, you’ll find the right audience for what you’re doing. Um, so that’s what we try to do at, at doubles zero wines is to really create something as a team that we’re specifically and especially really proud of.

Kathryn Hermann from 00 Wines: And it’s, it’s great to get some recognition.

A.J.: Yeah. Yeah. Well, most definitely, you know, and you know, talking about 2017 being big, I mean, 2018 was probably even a, a bigger stepping stone because that’s, you know, from what I can tell that’s really, when you went, you know, uh, down the rabbit hole for double zero wines, you got married to Chris at the Carleton winemaker studio.

A.J.: You hired a win Peterson NRI as a winemaker, and then Thanksgiving 2018, you fly out to, uh, New York with the case of, uh, wine and of double zeros wine. And you’re just kind of, you know, going all over, promoting it and, you know, getting people to, to taste it. Um, What was that like, I mean, being back in New York, uh, and just trying to figure out, well, not figure out, but, um, you know, now you’re, you know, a hundred percent on, on double zero at this point.

A.J.: What, what was that weekend like? And I’m just, yeah.

Kathryn Hermann from 00 Wines: Oh, absolutely. Um, for me personally, I think that was a really pivotal weekend. And, you know, just, just prior to that, we had started to get a little bit of attention. The sixteens had come out. People were really, really loving the 2016 double zero Chardonnays.

Kathryn Hermann from 00 Wines: And I left my job. I was working after scout savvy. I was sort of Aqua hired by another, um, you know, job matching app in Portland that was using, um, AI technology. It was pretty interesting, but I, um, Was either going to get fired or I had to quit because, because I was leaving my desk so often to take orders from the lady’s bathroom.

Kathryn Hermann from 00 Wines: um, I was answering the phone like, hi, this is double zero wine. Just praying that somebody didn’t come in and wash their hands or something. Um, so for us as a family business, we, you know, we, Chris and I put everything that we have into what we’re doing. So, um, I went out with one of my girlfriends to New York for Thanksgiving weekend and I brought a suitcase full of double zero.

Kathryn Hermann from 00 Wines: And there’s something that happens inside of you when you’ve worked so hard. And, you know, as an entrepreneur that it’s up to you to make this work. So there are no sales people we had no distribution in New York at the time. And so how are we going to get this in front of people in the, in really. The greatest wine market in the entire world for sophisticated wine drinkers, it’s New York because they’ve, they primarily drink European wine.

Kathryn Hermann from 00 Wines: Um, so yeah, I just loaded up a suitcase. I stayed at the w in the union square. Um, both of us stayed in the same room and just every day I would wheel it out and hit the wine shops and hit different restaurants. And yeah, I mean, I would think that as a shy person, that that would be difficult, but no, I mean, when, when it really all depends on you and you’re really proud of what you’re doing, um, you really want to yeah.

Kathryn Hermann from 00 Wines: Showcase what you have and it’s, I don’t think it’s bravery, but it’s more like a, a conviction of the heart. So I think that, you know, I rolled into some very, very exclusive wine shops in Manhattan. and I, I said, hi, I’m from Oregon. Do you wanna piece my wine? Right. I look like I was from Oregon. And what I didn’t know is that the, the Thanksgiving day weekend is the biggest weekend in all of New York for sales being from the east coast.

Kathryn Hermann from 00 Wines: I, I understood the attitude. I mean, some people were like, listen, why are you here? I’m so busy. Like, just leave it here. And you’re like, leave me alone. It’s like, thank you for even saying hi to me. Um, yes. Yeah. And I remember there was also a burgundy, um, documentary launch that we, that I was there for too, that my girlfriend and I went to and I was talking to a lot of the people in the room and there was this wonderful gentleman.

Kathryn Hermann from 00 Wines: Who’s one of our clients today. And he was so, so humble. I said, oh yeah, I I’m interested in trying your Chardonnay. I was talking to him about it. And he said, I said, oh, well I have some samples. Can I drop one off at your office tomorrow? And he said, oh yeah, definitely. That would be fantastic. So I went to a FedEx store.

Kathryn Hermann from 00 Wines: I got this little like Christmas bag, right. With like tissue paper. And I put it in there. I mean, it’s definitely not the double zero sophisticated packaging that you’re used to now. and I was like, okay, it’s um, where’s your office. Okay. It’s in the fifties. Okay. I know where that is. I’ll I’ll go there tomorrow.

Kathryn Hermann from 00 Wines: So I show up, there’s this giant man in the lobby of this building, I’m five, seven. I was wearing heels too. So pretty tall. This man was like seven feet tall. Holy cow. I know he got between me and the elevator door. And he was like, what are you doing here? By the way, this building was not just a little office building.

Kathryn Hermann from 00 Wines: It was like a 50 floor office tower. Oh my goodness. And I, I said, I’m from Oregon. Um, I have a bottle of wine as a gift for, you know, Mr. Soandso and he was like, oh yeah. Oh yeah, that guy likes wine. You can go up. Um, so I went up and he works for a, a big like technology venture capital firm. Um, lovely, lovely young gentleman, very, very excited about double zero wines now.

Kathryn Hermann from 00 Wines: So, um, I just think in general, it’s really important to put yourself out there. And that’s one thing that Chris and I continue to do, even though a lot more people know about our wines now, and we’re shipping them all over the world. I never ever stop having that spirit of giving and that spirit of excitement and sharing what we do.

Kathryn Hermann from 00 Wines: And, um, that’s really written into the heart of everything. That double zero is about. We really are dedicated to showcasing the Willamette valley to people all around the world to show them the potential of what it is, and also what it can. .

A.J.: Yeah. Yeah, no. So if we just take just a second, just to reflect on everything that you’ve done so far in your life, right?

A.J.: Yeah. Let me come back to the original question. Do you feel like you’ve become your own superhero?

Kathryn Hermann from 00 Wines: Um, I guess so. I mean, after telling that story, I guess so, because, uh, I think, I think coming from the, the culture of new England that I described and then moving into this period of just knowing that, you know, no, no, one’s here to rescue you.

Kathryn Hermann from 00 Wines: No, one’s here to sell the wine for you. Um, no, one’s here to, to pack and ship it for you. We have a fulfillment house now, so now there are people to pack and ship. Um, but during the pandemic we did a lot of that ourselves, so, right. I think so. I mean, that’s what I appreciate about the journey that I’ve been on because.

Kathryn Hermann from 00 Wines: Right now I’m 38 and a half. Uh, there’s so much, there’s so much, uh, more to go. And I think that the people that I respect the most in the history of the wine business, they have also been their own heroes, for example, um, Madam Bo andjay of Bo andjay definitely, uh, the VO of Clicko. Um, she was a real person.

Kathryn Hermann from 00 Wines: A lot of people don’t know that. And, uh, there’s a really, really amazing book about her called the widow that everybody should read it’s historical, um, non-fiction and right. Sort of it’s written by a, a historian who teaches at Colby college in Maine. And she does a lot of, uh, creative work to try to think about and understand what a woman like her must have been thinking, um, taking over a great champagne house and growing it into.

Kathryn Hermann from 00 Wines: yeah, a global powerhouse and now her historical story represents the entire region. So I don’t know. What do you think it means to be your own superhero?

A.J.: Well, I think, you know, ultimately, yeah, I think when you’re, um, when you’re young, you know, you, you wanna be like, oh, I wanna be a policeman or I wanna be a fireman or, you know, it’s, you, you take this journey and you just want, you know, you know, that seven year old or eight year old or 10 year old to be like, wow, never in a million years.

A.J.: Did I think you’d be where you’re at now? Right? It’s it, it is that to me. I mean, you are, you’ve done something just totally unimaginable that, um, the, the 10 year old just couldn’t possibly believe could have.

Kathryn Hermann from 00 Wines: Yeah. The, the 10 year old would really enjoy that. The story so far, for sure. It’s full of adventure.

Kathryn Hermann from 00 Wines: And of course, I mean, no one likes the hero’s journey that is, uh, straight up into the right. I mean, if it’s not filled with, uh, uncertainty, disappointments times where you almost don’t make it times when you wanna give up, um, it doesn’t make the, the high highs as satisfying.

A.J.: Right. But you know, it, you know, being in the tech world, you know, that you wanna, you wanna fail.

A.J.: I mean, you definitely wanna fail and you wanna fail fast and you wanna learn from those failures so you can build upon it and do better. So I mean, that’s, you know, not giving up is always the, the big point of all of it in my opinion.

Kathryn Hermann from 00 Wines: Oh, absolutely. And I think that that really ties into. what we’re doing in wine as well, because for me, the adjustment from startups and technology into wine was very difficult because all of these lessons that I learned in the startup world, I wanted to take the template of how do you run a tech company and how do you do startup weekend?

Kathryn Hermann from 00 Wines: And just like put it on the wine business, right. That doesn’t work

A.J.: it

Kathryn Hermann from 00 Wines: doesn’t work. when I first started, uh, building a team or I first started talking to people who are at an executive level in, um, the wine business, I would say like, how do you do project management? How do you do, like, do you do agile, scrum?

Kathryn Hermann from 00 Wines: How do you plan? You know, what are, how do you do your budgeting? I mean, , it was crazy. It was, it was a very, very difficult for me to understand and to really internalize the fact that everything that I knew how to do that worked in this in other industry does not work and why. Right. And the biggest thing is that, um, When you work in tech, it’s all based here.

Kathryn Hermann from 00 Wines: So it’s abstract thinking. And if you have an idea for your app, you can just pour yourself a glass of wine and, and code up a new feature at night and then ship it. And then it goes live the next day. Um, and we get one shot a year in wine. And so for me, learning how to work with a seasonality and to know that there are certain times in the year where you have to relax.

Kathryn Hermann from 00 Wines: There are certain times of the year when you go on the road, how you prepare for harvest, um, it’s a completely different lifestyle. So that’s why in my office, I have a keep calm and drink champagne poster. Uh, to remind myself that it’s okay to, to relax because in the world of technology, oftentimes, and we’re taught this, um, speed is of the essence, not just the speed of the processors on the machines you’re working on, but the speed of product development.

Kathryn Hermann from 00 Wines: Because often when you’re innovating, there are people who are coming up behind you who maybe have a similar idea who get to market faster. So yeah, everything in my career has been like better, faster, stronger, and that doesn’t, that doesn’t work and wine. You have to let go a little bit.

A.J.: You do, but you know, double zero itself, you know, is still innovating.

A.J.: I mean, um, I believe last year you started, you know, you got some con concrete fermentors and, you know, um, you mentioned earlier that the, uh, the 20, 21 vintage, you know, that wind did an absolutely amazing job and what, um, What was the process for those concrete fermentors? Like why, uh, I know that, you know, currently, I mean, you, you use M four S but like why, why the concrete fermentors?

Kathryn Hermann from 00 Wines: Yeah, that’s a great question. So, um, we make primarily Chardonnay and about 25% of our production is Pinot noir. And our Pinot has always been fermented in, um, terracotta andfor that we import from Tuscany. And I really, really like the freshness and the texture, um, that, that imparts, but we’re always trying to push the envelope.

Kathryn Hermann from 00 Wines: So even though, uh, I said that the wine business is different, you know, some of the things that Chris and I really do are we try to continue to push the envelope every single year. So in burgundy, um, a lot of the wines that we know and love are fermented in concrete. So we decided to call up, um, Manu, who is, is the owner of a company called iTech wines in California.

Kathryn Hermann from 00 Wines: We buy our, um, And for, from him. And we said, you know, we really, we want some, uh, concrete and we wanna talk to you about it. And what I didn’t realize is that, uh, you can get so many shapes of concrete. You can get pyramid shapes, you can get like semi pyramid, you can get tulip, you can get, you can get eggs.

Kathryn Hermann from 00 Wines: Right. And a lot of people in Willamette valley are now using concrete. So a lot of the winemakers will get together and, and talk about the shapes of their concrete and what they like about them and what, what they don’t. So it’s like anything it’s like, um, cars, it’s like, uh, musical instruments when everyone gets together and talk talks about their guitar.

Kathryn Hermann from 00 Wines: Um, so Chris and I, uh, as the proprietors of double zero, we are involved in all of the decision making for what we do and what we want. So, yeah, we were inspired by. The great wine, the great red wines at burgundy and concrete fermentors. And we decided to experiment with that in 2021. Um, and the Richard Herman covet, uh, Pinot noir was we did an experiment to ferment some of it in concrete and some of it Infor like we usually do, and those wines are so vastly different.

Kathryn Hermann from 00 Wines: So, um, we’re excited to see if we’ll be blending them together, if we’ll separate them out and do two separate wines. Um, we do all of the blending, um, the following August. So this August we’ll be blending the, uh, 2021. So we’ll see what happens.

A.J.: Yeah, no, if nothing else you should at least like keep, you know, uh, half a dozen, you know, in the concrete and half a dozen in four, just for yourself and see, uh, how they compare and contrast over the years.

Kathryn Hermann from 00 Wines: Yeah, absolutely. So, although, um, we are like a traditional family based wine business. We really try to push the envelope every year. And that’s been an exciting development for us. Yes.

A.J.: Yes. Um, so kind of going back to the, the wine that you dropped off this morning. Yeah. Um, so if I remember correctly, you know, it was, uh, October, 2020.

A.J.: I, you know, I came by to, I think pick up some, some wine and you know, you and Chris were very generous to, then we come in the backyard and, you know, taste some experimental wine that, um, was a, a joint, um, project or a joint. Just, yeah, I’ll say a joint project between you and ahe. Uh, what did that end up, you know, becoming and, uh, what was it used for and all that good

Kathryn Hermann from 00 Wines: fun stuff.

Kathryn Hermann from 00 Wines: That was a fun day. That was fun day . Um, so. Every year we participate in this really amazing event called the Willamette valley barrel auction, and it raises money for, um, the Willamette valley wines association, which is a very important professional organization that helps all, um, Willamette valley wines get out into the world through promotions, events, et cetera.

Kathryn Hermann from 00 Wines: So they have an individual Pinot, no lot that we’ve participated in, but there’s also a very fun project they do every year. Um, they allow a few wineries to collaborate together on a Chardonnay lot. And, um, we were excited because Gina hen is very good friends with win Peterson, NRI who, um, made our wines that year and they wanted to do a collaboration lot together.

Kathryn Hermann from 00 Wines: So we said, definitely that sounds like a great idea. You know, you two, um, Make it happen. And we selected a really fun barrel from the Eola Amity Hills to blend with, um, one of their vineyards from the Shahala mountains. And so you were there on the day that when brought over some samples with, I think, four different, um, was it four, I think you have the notes, uh, three or four different types of, um, finding agents.

A.J.: Yeah, I could, I could, I could pull up the notes real quick, but yeah, it doesn’t matter the number

Kathryn Hermann from 00 Wines: types of matter, but yeah. Yeah. So, um, and Chris and I thought it would be fun for you to be one of the early, uh, tasters, because we kind of knew what we were excited about, but we wanted, uh, an impartial palette to come and, uh, help us out.

Kathryn Hermann from 00 Wines: And you and you were there and you’ve, uh, have a history of tasting, a lot of breadth and depth of Willamette valley wines. So that was fun. So I, I dropped off today, uh, that finished. And I’m really excited about how it’s come together. Um, we, a fun story is that, uh, w is now focusing on her family project, rich CEST and RR 100%.

Kathryn Hermann from 00 Wines: And we are now working with an amazing winemaker named Matt Perry, who coincidentally we didn’t know at the time, um, was the white winemaker under Gina at, um, at Alzheimer’s. So in that bottle, it’s kind of like a, you know, serendipity coming together integrated. Right. Um, Matt made the wine with Gina, um, win, made that wine with Chris and I, and, uh, yeah, so that wine to me represents sort of like the changing of the guard.

Kathryn Hermann from 00 Wines: Yeah,

A.J.: no, it, it is, it, it, um, when I opened it up, I was very pleased with it. And I had to say that day when I was in the backyard with you and Chris, you know, we were talking about, you know, the whole being introverted and like being, you know, a little, just a little petrified and scared. I was like, Okay.

Kathryn Hermann from 00 Wines: I don’t know what

A.J.: I wasn’t expecting this, but no, I thoroughly appreciate it that day.

A.J.: Thank you so much.

Kathryn Hermann from 00 Wines: Yeah. I think, uh, part of the fun of the wine business and experimenting with wine and experiencing wine is really to like live with the wine, which means you don’t always wanna wait until, you know, the wine gets a good score and then people wanna buy it and then you store it and then you enjoy it at its moment of perfection.

Kathryn Hermann from 00 Wines: Um, just like a person. Uh, the wine always has a journey that is filled with ups and downs and just like life, the wine doesn’t develop in a straight line. So, uh, when we first started in the wine business, one of our mentors told us never, ever, ever let people taste unfinished wine because you know, this person kind of had an ego and they said, you know, Other people, non wine makers.

Kathryn Hermann from 00 Wines: They don’t know if they taste a wine. That’s not like perfectly finished. They won’t be able to see what it’s about to become. And Chris and I are very anti that. I mean, the way that I learned about wine and train my palate is to taste wine. Um, a variety of wines from producers, people, um, vintages, great wine, bad wine, amazing wine and wine in development.

Kathryn Hermann from 00 Wines: And that’s the only way I really feel like you can train your pal in, in a way that will help you recognize the development of wine as it goes. So I, I thought that was a fun day and yeah. Um, yeah, I, I learned about wine by having these experiences and, and not really knowing what I should be tasting , but I think that’s a very important thing to.

A.J.: Yeah, no, I, I completely agree. Um, you just recently got back from, you know, several weeks of traveling and, you know, you were in Paris, um, you know, for some of those stops, I’m curious. Did you revisit any of the places that you, uh, visited your first time in Paris when you were 16 on this trip?

Kathryn Hermann from 00 Wines: Ooh. Um, did we, we didn’t do any museums this time.

Kathryn Hermann from 00 Wines: We didn’t go back to the exact places. Oh, we did. We did a stroll down the sh and, um, it’s very commercial and corporate. Now, there were more like smaller boutiques when I was there when I was 16, but, um, the spending money that I did bring, I spent it all on one sweater on the Sean. It was like, it was like a, a hoodie cream colored sweater.

Kathryn Hermann from 00 Wines: And, um, my very cool aunt still makes fun of me for that because she was like, I tried to stop you, but you really wanted it. So I said fine um, but we were there because we were invited to be a part of, through the Oregon wine board, a special tasting of Oregon and California wines, uh, at the residence of the American ambassador in France.

Kathryn Hermann from 00 Wines: And that was a really transformative day for me actually, because, you know, we were staying down the street and, um, we were staying in a hotel that was just a few blocks away from the original address and actually the currently the headquarters of Chanel, um, in Paris, the right Gabrielle. Um, so it was pretty amazing as like a female entrepreneur to be walking by the address of where she originally started and to think, you know, The before Karl Lagerfeld and before Chanel was a thing, there was a woman who was making clothes and hats for people and selling them.

Kathryn Hermann from 00 Wines: Um, so, uh, I don’t know. I reflected a lot actually about on that trip. And I did think like, wow, my 16 year old self would be like, you weren’t doing good. right. Exactly. And, uh, and so we walked down the night before on the Ruth St. Honoree, which is where, um, the residence is, and that is the road that is the road.

Kathryn Hermann from 00 Wines: We’re all the high end fashion shops are. So, because I knew we were doing like an official, um, official event, I kind of brought conservative clothing. It was all beige. I had like a beige skirt, a white collared shirt and a beige jacket because, you know, I wanted to be like professional. Right, right, right.

Kathryn Hermann from 00 Wines: But the night before I was, we were walking down the road and, and looking at all the stores, I had kind of like a funky outfit. I had like this, um, sort of leopard print skirt and this black satin top and black high heels and bright red lipstick actually Chanel . Um, and I thought, I actually did think about my 16 year old self.

Kathryn Hermann from 00 Wines: And then I thought about Gabrielle Chanel and I said, self past self, future self present self. Do I want my Parisian debut of my luxury product to happen while I’m dressed in a beige outfit? and the answer was, no, we do not do beige right. So I wore my, I wore my wildest outfit that was still, you know, appropriate, inappropriate.

Kathryn Hermann from 00 Wines: Right. Um, but I did wear my bright red Chanel lipstick to give myself. Confidence for that day. And I would say that, that that’s a really important chapter in the story of me and the story of double zero because, um, yeah, I think it is very important for Chris and I with double zero to share the story of Willamette valley on a global stage.

Kathryn Hermann from 00 Wines: Um, but I think it’s also good to recognize where we all come from and where we’re all going, because woven within the wines of Willamette valley and the wines of every region is, is the story of the people behind them, which is why I really appreciate what you’re doing, AJ, because if you just line up bottles and you’re just tasting the wines, I mean, they don’t really come alive in, in general.

Kathryn Hermann from 00 Wines: Um, I’m not talking about specific wines, I’m talking about all wines, but if you’ve been to the region, if you’ve met the people, if you know the intention, if you know the historical significance of what you’re tasting, um, if you’ve seen the maps, et cetera, the wine just means something so much more and something so different.

Kathryn Hermann from 00 Wines: So that’s why I, I really appreciate that you’re telling the story behind all of the wines that people can taste and enjoy from this region. Yeah,

A.J.: no, I, I thoroughly enjoyed it and one of the reasons I, I have done that is because, you know, in tech, you know, and it’s all about scrum, it’s all about agile and it’s all about just getting the product shipped and out the door.

A.J.: Right. Um, and so the human is lost and I’m just like, no, we can’t lose, you know, the human aspect and, um, doing what I’m doing. I have nobody that I have to answer to except for myself. So I just get to have as much fun as I can as, as much as I want, which is.

Kathryn Hermann from 00 Wines: Yeah, no, I think it’s fantastic. And you totally embody the, the spirit of the entrepreneur as well.

Kathryn Hermann from 00 Wines: And you, whether you acknowledge it or not, you’re part of the wine business. um, so you’re, you’re here with us now because, uh, communicating the story of the wines of any region is, is vastly important, not just to the economic vitality of the community, but also, um, people are coming here. They’re looking at the Willamette valley.

Kathryn Hermann from 00 Wines: They wanna learn about us and who we are and what we stand for. Um, and it’s a place where you can come and it’s sort of like our town. You can see your favorite Willamette valley celebrities sort of out doing their thing. Tony Soder the other day was I saw I’m going into third street books on McMinville and, um, you know, if you go to community plate breakfast in the morning and downtown McMinville, you’ll see winemakers and vineyard managers and people’s little kids running around.

Kathryn Hermann from 00 Wines: And, uh, yeah, telling the story of the people here, I think is really important. . Yeah, no,

A.J.: I, I, I hope to, to do my best. Yeah. Um, so this, this next question is gonna be a little bit, you know, kind kind of difficult, but, um, you know, inside the double zero foundation, you know, there’s a lot of, there’s a lot of legacy, you know, you have, you know, even with your labels, with the FYA and the Richard and the Herman, sorry, the FYA Richard and Katherine Herman coves, right.

A.J.: Family is built into it. Um, and you know, we talked about, you know, 10 year old self looking at, you know, yourself now and, you know, he was like, no, there’s no way I could even possibly imagine. So where do you see double zero in, in 30 years? And I mean, I know that’s a difficult question, but like with that legacy part of it in, in mind and whatnot, I mean, what, what do you see double zero being in 30 years,

Kathryn Hermann from 00 Wines: Hmm.

Kathryn Hermann from 00 Wines: You know, we have thought a lot about this, uh, because the story of family is so woven into what we’re doing. And Chris really grew up here in the Willamette valley and his parents immigrated from Europe and, uh, they were professors at Oregon state university and Oregon. Gave them everything. And they gave so much to the state of Oregon.

Kathryn Hermann from 00 Wines: And we can talk about that another time for sure, because their family has really woven into the history here, especially of the Willamette valley. And Chris has been behind the scenes working on the business side, um, for many decades involved in a lot of things that, um, people will never know about. And that’s really, that’s really cool to know that he’s had a hand in that.

Kathryn Hermann from 00 Wines: So I really take what I’m doing with double zero very, very seriously, because the investment to start, this came from Chris’s father’s savings, uh, from the university. And so every dollar that we spend right now, I know exactly, um, where it’s coming from. And so we’re dedicated to remaining a, a family business.

Kathryn Hermann from 00 Wines: And so. people ask us sometimes. Why don’t you have your own winery? Why don’t you have your own tasting room? Why don’t you have your own vineyards? And for us, we really are excited about just creating the most special, incredible experience in the bottle. And we’re really lucky to work with incredible farmers and an incredible wine making team to help this vision, um, come alive.

Kathryn Hermann from 00 Wines: So. I’m really inspired by the families of burgundy and champagne and the fact that, you know, people don’t retire or maybe they’ll retire when their, they, their kid is like, you need to get out of here, dad and mom. Right, right. Um, but you still see the old people out on the sorting line. You still see people milling around, you know, we were in champagne at Julian and Sarah UAS place.

Kathryn Hermann from 00 Wines: Uh, we champagne Paul Lenoi. We worked with them on the double zero champagne. And his father was just sort of, you know, be bopping around, you know, in a toolbox, like organizing some screws and fixing machines. And he’s like, oh, that’s my dad. . So, um, for double zero, we are dedicated to remaining a family based business forever.

Kathryn Hermann from 00 Wines: Right. I’m knocking on some wood here. Um, yes. Yes, because I. I’m really influenced by, um, the old European heritage of Chris’s family. And his father taught me a lot about these old values in the family history. And they have a long history of entrepreneurs in the family in Europe as well. So in 30 years, I hope that we are still doing what we’re doing.

Kathryn Hermann from 00 Wines: Um, maybe we’ll have a vineyard, maybe we’ll have our own winery then just so that we can have our own equipment to, uh, control. And I would like to design a Burgundian style barrel room instead of stacking the barrels, just like one barrel on these like long, you know, long gravel seller. Right. So, um, my goal is to just personally, the way my story ends, this is the way I want it to end is to be one of those really, really old ladies, like, um, Madam be Le in burgundy in my late eighties, early nineties, still out there, stomping around, uh, vineyards and checking on barrels and, uh, Bossing people around and telling them what to do.

Kathryn Hermann from 00 Wines: um, so there’s a lot happening in the Willamette valley. There are a lot of transactions that are happening. I personally think that that’s exciting because like I said before, um, we need a diverse and complex economy here. People need jobs, people need to be paid. We need transportation, we need restaurants, we need hotels.

Kathryn Hermann from 00 Wines: We need people to be a part of that. And we it’s the inflection point, the Willamette valley does need to grow and that takes resources. Um, but I really want to remain a family based business that we’re running and people forget, um, a family based business that is thriving, that started in California with an attorney and his young hardworking wife, Jackson family wines.

Kathryn Hermann from 00 Wines: right, right. So, um, so. I don’t know if we’ll ever be that big, but I, I know , I’m excited about, um, continuing our family heritage and we’re really just starting here at double zero. So we’ve got many, many decades to make that happen. And Chris has three wonderful daughters and, uh, wonderful grandsons. So, um, we’ll, we’ll definitely be putting them to work soon.

A.J.: That sounds great. I can’t wait to, to see what, how it all turns out.

Kathryn Hermann from 00 Wines: Same with me, but we’ll see. We’ll, we’ll be here together, AJ, and as each chapter is written, we’ll, we’ll be reading the book together. Right? I

A.J.: love it. Yes. Most definitely. Uh, shall I wrap things up with some rapid fire questions? Sure.

A.J.: Okay. So you’re taking a road trip all by yourself to say like, Texas, do you navigate there with a physical map or do you use apple maps?

Kathryn Hermann from 00 Wines: Definitely apple maps and I’ll definitely get lost. Um, but, um, I will just blame it on, uh, the latest version of iOS and how stupid it is. There you go.

A.J.: uh, what is your favorite indulgent food?

Kathryn Hermann from 00 Wines: My favorite indulgent food is, um, I think it’s main lobster with butter, a classic boiled main lobster. I do not like fancy lobster. I don’t like lobster bisque, lobster, Mac and cheese. I don’t like the French style lobster with, um, I’m an entrepreneur still working, so I get my notifications are on . Um, that’s okay.

Kathryn Hermann from 00 Wines: Yeah. So boiled main lobster with butter, just straight outta the ocean cooked in boiled seaweed. .

A.J.: Mm, that sounds pretty good. Uh, if you could choose a superpower, what would it be?

Kathryn Hermann from 00 Wines: Ooh, superpower.

A.J.: Yeah.

Kathryn Hermann from 00 Wines: Mm. I think my superpower, my first inclination is to say like seeing to the future, because I wanna know what’s going to happen.

Kathryn Hermann from 00 Wines: I’m the kind of person where I read the first page of a book and I read the last page of a book before I start reading the book. It’s a bad habit. Um, so that’s my inclination, but I do not want to do that. So I would say my superpower would be to, um, like travel instantaneously. Like I hate flying, but I love traveling.

Kathryn Hermnan from 00 Wines: Right. So if I could just like close my eyes and be in Australia or France in a minute without having to like, do the travel thing, that’s what I would wanna do. Instant

A.J.: teleportation. I love it. Yes. Yes. Uh, favorite superhero.

Kathryn Hermann from 00 Wines: Um, I would say Ironman. I like Ironman. Oh, okay. I like that. Uh, he’s an inventor.

Kathryn Hermann from 00 Wines: He’s an entrepreneur and he can do multiple things. He can fly. He’s got an exoskeleton. Um, yeah. Yeah, but the entrepreneurial superhero. Very nice.

A.J.: Uh, last book you read, it could be digital. It could be audio. It could be physical.

Kathryn Hermann from 00 Wines: Um, the last book I read was, yeah, when we were flying last time I read, um, sometimes a great notion by Ken Kesy and okay.

Kathryn Hermann from 00 Wines: That is a book about, uh, Oregonians. and oh, okay. That’s all I’ll say. Chris said, sometimes I said, I don’t really get this, the Oregon farmer thing. It’s a, it’s a totally different way of thinking about the world. And he said, if you really wanna understand, like the rural Oregon mindset, you have to read sometimes a great notion by Ken Kesey.

Kathryn Hermann from 00 Wines: It’s about a logging family. Oh, okay.

A.J.: All right. I’ll have to check that out. I haven’t never heard of it.

Kathryn Hermann from 00 Wines: Yeah. Yeah. It was, it was very, very popular, especially in Oregon when it came out because it was, it was about Oregonians here, but as a transplant to Oregon, you should read it.

A.J.: Okay. Yeah, no, I definitely will.

A.J.: My, uh, I’m trying to think of my transplant book. It was, uh, it was like a fly fishing book. Mm-hmm and I can’t remember, uh, the river, why or something of that nature? I can’t remember. But anyway, yeah, that was an interesting book. Um, but yeah, that’s all the questions that I have. Is there anything else that, uh, I didn’t talk about that you’d like to, to bring up?

Kathryn Hermann from 00 Wines: Uh, no, you really covered it and you uncovered my past life as a tech entrepreneur. I don’t, I don’t really get a chance to talk about that too often, but, um, yeah. I just wanna reiterate AJ that, um, it’s really great to be a part of your work. I’m really excited about what you’re doing and the Willamette valley is so vibrant.

Kathryn Hermann from 00 Wines: There’s so many fun things happening here right now, a lot of growth in development, but I really think it’s the right kind of growth in development and yeah, double zero. We’re all about exploring the potential of P R and Chardonnay. And there’s so much more, um, to this story. So thank you so much for having me and for really digging deep into these stories and sharing them with the world.

Kathryn Hermann from 00 Wines: I really appreciate it. And I know all of your fans do too. Yeah.

A.J.: No, thank you so much. I, uh, can’t thank you enough. Thank you.

Kathryn Hermann from 00 Wines: All right. Thanks, AJ. All right. Thank you.

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