Amie Baudoin Owner, Morgan Ridge Vineyards.
Established since 2004, Morgan Ridge Vineyards acquired its name from owner operator, Arnie Baudoin (formerly Morgan). Her family has owned the land, located in Gold Hill, for over two hundred years and was used predominantly for agricultural purposes. Amie met her husband, Tommy Baudoin and decided because of their passion for food and Tommy originally from Louisiana and Cajun influence they opened a restaurant, which they ran successfully for over 10 years.
After visiting several wineries and their shared interest in fine wine they decided to use the land & plant 7 acres of grapevines. Amie and Tommy discovered that the site is unique to the area as it has a South Eastern exposure. They especially enjoy the viniferous varietals, so after much deliberation they decided on planting 5 viniferous and 2 hybrid varieties, each one having unique char-acteristics. Amie and Tommy live on the vineyard so are able to give undivided attention to the grapes throughout the growing season; they both enjoy being out working in the vines and love the tranquility of the land. Before investing in a winery Amie and tommy wanted to ensure that they could produce superior quality fruit, hence all the hard work in the vineyard had paid off. In Feb-ruary 2010 they broke ground on the winery. Just recently Amie & Tommy was recognized and awarded 2012 Grape Growers Excellence Award, given by the N.C. Grape Growers Association. With the winery now open this is not the end goal for Tommy & Amie. They are continuously aspiring towards the future and have recently been approved for their on premise malt beverage permit.
Ken Gulaian Co-Owner, Round Peak Vineyards
Ken Gulaian and his wife Kari Heerdt took over as the owners of Round Peak Vineyards in December 2008, shortly after returning to North Carolina from a two year assignment in the bay area of California, where they spent a lot of time enjoying wine in Napa, Sonoma, and the Dry Creek Valley, and particularly enjoyed the small family owned wineries. Ken & Kari have spent two exciting years learning about the North Carolina wine industry, getting to know many of the people, learning the challenges, and looking for ways to further increase the great opportunity that already exist for producing and promoting North Carolina wines. Ken has an engineering degree and has a 20 year background in Industrial equipment design, service, marketing and sales. He most recently was a general manager for a $40 million services busi-ness for Ingersoll Rand in Davidson, NC. With a range of experience in sales, marketing, and management he would welcome the opportunity to help the North Carolina Winegrower's Association in whatever capacity is needed.
Amy Helton Co-Owner, Hanover Park Vineyard
Amy has been involved with grapes and wine since 1996 after a honeymoon to the South of France. Amy and her husband Michael own Hanover Park Vineyard in Yadkinville, NC where they have been producing wine since 1999. A former art teacher, Amy now dedicates all of her time to the wine business. Producing Cabernet Sauvignon, Cabernet Franc, Chambourcin, Mourevdre, Chardonnay and Viognier for starters, Amy and Michael project to make up to 3,000 cases of wine per year from Hanover Park.
Hailey Klepcyk Tasting Room Manager, Piccione Vineyards
In 2010 I began working as a wholesale wine distributor with responsibilities in learning, marketing, and selling over 5,000 different labels from around the world. In 2013 I entered the NC wine industry by working for the newly opened Medaloni Cellars. There I was responsible for tasting room and event planning, but also started some hands on work in the winery directly which ignited a new passion. In 2015 I left with the opportunity to help open the tasting room at Piccione Vineyards. I took on the role of Tasting Room Manager but have been involved with every aspect from the vineyard and harvesting to the winery and blending trials. I feel that having the full experience, and not just limited to the tasting room, has given me more of an appreciation and understanding of the NC wine industry and what we as professionals are hoping to accomplish and grow in the future. It's an exciting industry that is growing by leaps and bounds and I am grateful to have entered it during such a crucial time in its history.