Describing himself as a kind of Hewlett Packard of wine, Vincent Fritzche, owner of Vincent Wine Company, did indeed start his business like the eponymous tech startup – in his garage. “It was just a side project, but it has grown into a full-fledged winery where we produce and bottle Pinot Noir, Chardonnay and other wines from grapes grown around Oregon’s Willamette Valley.”

While COVID-19 doesn’t affect grapes, it does affect interactions such as wine tastings and other events built around fine wine. “It’s been really hard because sales to our distributors have gone down and our sales to restaurants have plummeted,” he says. “Direct sales have been a bit of a bright spot, but it is still hard to know what happens next.”

What does come next for Fritzche, however, is his partnership with Columbia Bank’s Pass It On Project. Wanting to help a group he cares for very much; Vincent Wine Company is providing resources to a local organization and Columbia Bank is paying the bill. “We are passing it on to an organization called Hacienda CBD, which serves the Latino community in NE Portland,” says Fritzche. “With Columbia Bank’s support I’m going to help an organization that does so much for the Latino community and this is important because so much farm and vineyard work is done by Latinos who often go unnoticed for their contributions to our economy.”