Prospice is the creation of two friends with a shared vision for wines and winemaking. Each changed course from a prior professional career, drawn to winemaking by the impulse to craft an artisanal product.
At Prospice our focus is on making balanced and elegant wines that celebrate the source fruit and the vineyard sites. We seek to roll back the clock on the modern trend toward riper, more extracted wines, preferring a lighter touch of oak and balanced extraction and alcohol. We embrace modern scientific research into fermentation and aging, and the use of chemical analyses to understand and guide the production of the best wines we can possibly make from that fruit, but minimize the use of overly manipulative additives or techniques. We use predominantly neutral oak barrels for aging, but employ a small number of new oak barrels — always of a carefully selected style and cooperage to complement the wine to be aged.
Throughout the process, the science, the analyses, the techniques, and the barrels are all ultimately in the service of the most subjective but most important tool we have: our palate. Ultimately, a wine is a small work of art in a bottle, and we seek to make each Prospice wine unique, expressive, and beautiful.
ABOUT THE NAME
Our name “Prospice,” from the Latin for “look to the future,” represents both our belief in the inherently optimistic and forward-looking nature of wine and winemaking and our respect for their deeply rooted traditions. The clean, modern lines of the Prospice name in our logo sit in counterpoint to the lower rendering of the same name in ancient Etruscan characters (read from right to left), signifying this dichotomy of future and past.
Winemaking is full of moments of anticipation and expectation. A grower who has found the perfect new vineyard site can close her eyes and see the rows of trellised vines that will eventually span the landscape. Every year as spring arrives, grower and winemaker alike begin to roam the vineyard, carefully tracking the progress of budbreak, bloom, fruit set, veraison, ripening — ever envisioning the harvest that lies ahead. As freshly-harvested fruit reaches the winery, the winemaker tastes and begins to envision the future of this incipient wine. At every stage of ferment and aging, and as the wine goes into bottle, the winemaker recites an insistent and repeated mantra — “I can’t wait to see what this wine becomes…” — whether in a year, two years, or twenty.
While winemaking is full of this future-oriented vision, there is also an unshakeable reverence for the ancient origins of the craft. The overwhelming majority of fine wine in modern times will spend at least some time in an oak barrel that would be entirely recognizable to a winemaker in Roman times. Other ancient materials and techniques (such as concrete fermenters and clay amphorae) are experiencing a huge resurgence in modern wineries. Where the geology supports it, many wineries still age wines in caves hewn from solid rock. In spite of multiple alternatives that are arguably superior in every way, winemakers and consumers alike still cling stubbornly to the use of cork to seal wine bottles.
Prospice — the name and the winery — is a celebration of the past, of all the years of experience that have brought the winemaking craft to where it is today, and a means to carry that craft into an exciting future. We hope you will join us for the adventure.
ABOUT THE TEAM
Jay Krutulis studied Biology in college and Neuroscience in graduate school before embarking on nearly 20 years of studying and practicing corporate law, including work at the law firm of Alston & Bird in Washington, DC, and Amazon.com in Seattle. He fell in love with wine during the first stop, and with Washington wine thanks to his proximity to the Woodinville area while working for Amazon. When he and his wife Christy decided to move to Walla Walla, there was no resisting the call of the wine industry, and it has proven to be a natural confluence of the science studies of his youth and the business endeavors of his legal career. After graduating from the Enology & Viticulture Program at Walla Walla Community College, Jay worked on the winemaking team at Tranche Estate and Corliss Estates as the Cellarmaster for Tranche.
Matt Reilly began an architecture career with a job in Spokane, where he had the opportunity to participate in harvest activities at Barrister Winery, sparking his desire to dive into the Washington wine industry. A cross-country move for his wife Sarah’s employment put that idea briefly on hold, but after a mere 9 months on the east coast they found themselves back in Washington state, and Matt entered the WWCC program. After graduating, Matt has worked at Mark Ryan Winery and as the Cellarmaster at Gramercy Cellars.