Schmidt, Rich




1 hour 59 minutes 23 seconds


November 24, 2015

Interview Summary

Originally having nothing to do with viticulture or enology, Dick and Nancy Ponzi were just working class citizens of Southern California. Their path to wine began to unfold one day when Dick decided to revive his family tradition of home winemaking. Their interest grew and they moved to Oregon where they established their vineyard in 1970, and produced their first vintage in 1974.

In this interview, Dick Ponzi goes deeper into his origins in the wine industry and expounds upon the history of the early wine industry organizations: the Oregon Winegrowers Association and the Winegrowers Council of Oregon. Ponzi shares his recollection of the early winegrower’s dynamics, and speaks about the struggles and success the organizations faced when trying to pass legislation and market Oregon wine.

This interview was conducted by Rich Schmidt on November 24, 2015.


Some oral history interviews are conducted on site and may contain background noise from nature, winery, or tasting room operations.