Paul’s Story

Wine should be very pure and natural. The only thing synthetic about our wine is the closure, so you never have to worry about getting a “corked” wine. We drink more of our wine than anyone else, we want it to be healthful and nutritious. We guarantee our wine.

BUT…it has to be distinctive wine. Wine with full, rich flavor. Wine that makes food and friends better. Wine that brings dismay when you find the bottom. Wine that makes music in the glass, sings on the tongue to tell where it grew. Wine you can afford to drink. Wine made by Paradisos del Sol.

Paradisos is the Spanish derivative of pairidaēza, Persian پردیس (pardis) for a “walled enclosure,” from pairi “around” + diz “form, shape.” It originally comes from Ancient Greek π (paradeisos “Persian garden”). It is a word that goes back to 400 B.C. and refers to beautiful, irrigated gardens walled off from the desert. When I walk through a vineyard, I feel I am in a paradise.

We are a small family-owned winery, only using grapes from our organic pesticide-free Vineyard del Sol here at our winery.

Paradisos del Sol is an expression of my soul. The winery is not named for me (even though I am plenty arrogant!), because it is more than just my sweat in a bottle of Paradisos Red. I have help tending the vines, lots of different sweat irrigates our paradise. My wife Barbara Sherman does all the paperwork, plenty of sweat there! She also helps runs the tasting room with me. Even as early as 4, our son Kevin (now 27 and old enough to run our tasting room!) helped by pulling weeds, picking grapes, and putting bottles on the bottling line. Visit his Jellybean & Wine Charm Store when you come see us (also seasonal cherries and melons). Kevin has now graduated (with honors) from Western Washington University and is looking for a gig as an actor. Anyone need an actor? Or dramaturge? Or anything in the acting scene? He is really good (says his proud parents). We might be a tiny bit biased.

We are believers in letting the grapes become wine. We are Winegrowers not Winemakers. Our job is to eat grapes and imagine what wine they wish to be—then provide the best conditions for the transformation into great wine. Sometimes we use barrels (old, neutral barrels, never new), sometimes tanks. Most often a barrel is the cocoon where the juice transforms into a dry table wine. Sometimes the wines yearn to be sweet and luscious and a temperature-controlled tank is the cocoon. (But then Angelica is sweet, luscious, and barrel-fermented [it’s just complex]).

paul and barbara near water

Based at our farm in Zillah, Paradisos is a complete estate winery. Grapes are crushed and wines are bottled with the help of friends.

As one of Washington’s most experienced enologists, my first venture into wine was with blackberries in 1968. I have made my living via fermented grapes since 1983 and I have collected pay from over 10 Northwest wineries (sometimes working for wine!).

I love the way wine can express its influence on its development. How its roots grow, and the way the sun strikes the leaves. The prevailing wind, the slope of the hill, the work of the viñador. What the French call terroir and we call mesoclimate.

Great wine is grown not made. As a terroirest, I let the wine be what it is, not adjusting pH and acidity to some textbook standard.

I have been an organic gardener since shortly after birth. I was at Badger Mountain Vineyard when it became Washington’s first certified organic vineyard, was at Worden’s Winery to produce the first organic wine in the state. Now we are working to bring you the best wine our organic pesticide-free grapes can become. We guarantee our wine, period.

To help keep the planet green, we try to use only clear glass, recyclable everywhere. Our packaging is 100% recyclable, please do!

For over thirty years I have had a vision of a traditional wine estate growing wine and food for my and other families. My vision is of a home at Paradisos del Sol for the elevation of grapes to the elixir of the gods—WINE!

My pleasure in gatherings of kith and kin, for food and wine, drives my desire to share this experience. What better way than to provide the wine for your next gathering!