From their childhood escapades with lemonade stands and wood-working shop sales, brothers Eric Christopher and Ryan Michael Harms have long held the spark of entrepreneurial spirit, always scheming their next collaborative business idea. Fast forward more than three decades of brotherly brainstorming, and the pair has created a true family business.
The wine business is a somewhat unlikely landing point for the Harms brothers, who were born and raised in the Midwest, where well drilling or dairy farming might have been more obvious family ventures. But, for reasons that can only be deemed fate, both brothers landed on the west coast in the wine business – Ryan in Oregon and Eric in California. After more long-distance phone brainstorming sessions than either can remember, small inklings for how they might one day work together gave way to one big idea for what is now an expression of their collective experiences in one label – Christopher Michael Wines.
Each contributing their own unique skill sets (Ryan is a winemaker by trade and Eric a financial analyst in the wine biz), they also bring equal parts passion and work-ethic and the kind of never-ending drive that only those with entrepreneur in their blood can claim. In business together since 2009, they are committed to making wines that are true to each varietal they work with. Not afraid of vineyards in the far reaches of any growing region, the Harms brothers are focusing their efforts on finding expressive fruit that produces vibrant and fresh wines. Without worrying about geographic boundaries, Ryan and Eric look to work with growers that farm sustainably and seek out the best expressions of their grapes. Be it Oregon Pinot Noir or Washington Cabernet, what matters to the brothers behind Christopher Michael Wines is finding fruit that will make a delicious wine, regardless of varietal or origin.