Emery grew up on a working family ranch near the Black Hills in South Dakota. When he was 19, he moved to California and began working in wineries, starting at Deerfield Ranch Winery in its infancy and helping establish its presence in Sonoma. His time there reinforced his decision to pursue a degree in viticulture and enology from UC-Davis. Now, Emery is applying his hands-on winemaking experience, his academic expertise and his passion for the outdoors and agriculture into the pursuit of making excellent wine. It’s a life-long dream come true!
Risdall Ranch Winery was established in 2016, when winemaker Emery Risdall and his father, Bob, became the new owners of Shafer Vineyard Cellars, a Forest Grove winery with almost four decades of local heritage.
Visitors to the winery are greeted by tasting room manager Ryan, whose start in viticulture began on his family’s hobby vineyard in South Dakota. As part of the winery’s small crew, Ryan is involved with the winemaking process, assisting Emery and Mac with tank maintenance, harvest, filtering, bottling and more. He loves welcoming visitors – and their dogs! – to the winery and introducing them to the amazing wines of the Willamette Valley.
As cellar master, Mac is responsible for hand crafting fantastic wines from the time the vines start producing fruit all the way to a finished bottle. He oversees day-to-day wine operations, barrel maintenance and general repairs, manages and trains cellar hands, and works beside Emery to produce wines that embody his style of winemaking.