Was there a specific wine, moment or place that unlocked your passion?
Jodi & Josh Roznowski: New Year’s Eve 2012… Josh spent this night at his favorite wine bar in Omaha, Nebraska and it was there that he made the decision that one day he was going to have a career in wine. He discovered a love for wine while he was stationed at different wine regions (Central Coast, CA and Germany) during his career in the Air Force. Jodi has always enjoyed the relationship part of wine… making new friends and creating memories. When Josh said this was his dream, she knew she wanted to help make it a reality.
What did you study in school and what were you doing before you started in the wine industry?
J&JR: Josh was a Meteorologist in the Air Force for 20 years. When he retired in 2016, he and Jodi moved to Walla Walla and he enrolled in the Enology & Viticulture program at Walla Walla Community College. Jodi was a Food Microbiologist prior to joining Josh on this adventure and started working for another local winery soon after.
How has being in the wine industry changed you?
J&JR: We work a lot harder (just kidding… kinda). Josh has had to learn to adjust his internal plan according to what happens in the vineyard/winery. The military is very regimented and wine isn’t, so he has learned to adapt to those changes. Jodi has had to learn how to manage Josh’s temper tantrums but when the day is over, they know this is what they are meant to do together. For both of us… being in the industry has changed how we experience other wineries. We get it… wine is fun but it’s hard and it makes us appreciate our time at other wineries even more.
What’s your favorite part of being in the wine industry?
J&JR: Josh has two favorites. He loves pouring wine for folks in the tasting room and seeing their faces light up…when they truly enjoy their experience and the wine and he knows that they will take it home and remember us fondly. His other favorite is the day we put the wine in the bottle because he knows it is safe and that it’s going to make someone happy. Jodi loves the community… she was not expecting a community who fully supports and recognizes the efforts of other people and wineries around them. Walla Walla is an incredible place filled with people who just want everyone to succeed and will do everything they can to make that happen.
Looking back, was there something in your past that led you to wine?
J&JR: It was Josh’s experiences in the Air Force that led him to wine. He traveled the world and many of his memories include wine and friends. This was the conduit that led him to want to help others make memories that they could look back on fondly. For Jodi, it was simply Josh. He taught her what she knows about wine and that made her want to learn more. Plus, they wanted something they could do together… that was theirs to share with others. That’s the dream.
Read more about Josh, Jodi and Smoky Rose Cellars and buy their wine, visit:
Right now, Smoky Rose Cellars is offering free shipping on 3 or more bottles!
Be sure to connect with Smoky Rose Cellars on social media too!