Rachel Rose graduated with her B.S in Molecular, Cellular, and Developmental Biology from the University of California, Santa Cruz. Fresh out of college and working in a Biotech research lab, she never imagined herself elbow deep in rolling wine ferments within just a few years; however, wine finds a way. For her it was through food. Cooking was her hobby through college and her first couple years of professional life, and as she gained a job with stable income, she was able to start pairing her meals with wine. Each wine she tried opened her eyes to new regions and new varietals, and she picked up a job in Bonny Doon’s original tasting room on weekends to grow this newfound interest. Meeting with a winemaker, she realized that not only were geography and climate huge factors in wine, but biology and chemistry as well. Wine quickly became a fiery passion, but unlike most passions, her education actually applied to this one. Already feeling exceedingly restless in the lab setting, she debated what and where to study before taking off for Australia to learn viticulture for a year.
One year became three years, by the end of which she had her M.S. in Oenology and a postgraduate diploma in viticulture. The University provided a full winery so Rachel could work with a stunning array of grapes in a hands-on, experiential fashion, taking a new-world approach to microbiology and soil chemistry. She knew either Burgundy or “the New Burgundy,” AKA Oregon, were in her future, and as a non-French speaking American woman, the latter seemed to make the most sense.