Philippe Coderey comes from a very long line of vine growers and farmers in southern France and Switzerland. His last name finds its roots in the old French verb ‘codurer’ - which meant to cultivate vineyards. His ancestors were named after their vocation during the 11th century. He grew up on the family vineyard in Provence, France and was fortunate to be exposed to traditional viticulture techniques through elders of the family.
He worked with his father from a young age and by the time he turned 15, he was familiar with all traditional vineyard operations from plantation to pruning and through harvest. He attended a viticulture/oenology boarding school in Provence from 1977 to 1981. He finished his oenology education at the University of Burgundy in Dijon.
In 1983 he moved to the Lavaux region of Switzerland, where he worked for a year on a local estate vineyard. He was then recruited by a local family business that provided vineyards and wineries with their equipment plus pesticides, synthetic fertilizers, and herbicides. After four years there, he started to develop health issues caused by the absorption of chemicals through his skin. This chemical exposure left Philippe with no choice but to quit his job. He then joined Camphill Village in Pennsylvania, United States where they offered a three-year biodynamic training class organized by the Biodynamic Association of North America. He graduated from the program and decided to live and work there for another number of years, perfecting his knowledge about biodynamic farming.
In 1999, he returned to France and was hired by the prestigious M. Chapoutier in the Rhône Valley as a vineyard manager and winemaker. Working for M. Chapoutier gave him the opportunity to work on some of the most renowned vineyards in appellations such as: Hermitage, Crozes-Hermitage, Cornas, Saint Joseph, Saint-Péray, Côte-Rôtie, Chateu-neuf du Pape, Banyuls and Collioures.
In 2005 he was recruited by Randall Graham of Bonny Doon winery in Santa Cruz, California to develop a biodynamic viticulture program. While there, he implemented his biodynamic and traditional farming system upon a dozen vineyards all over the state. Since 2012 Philippe has consulted independently, working with several vineyards throughout California (Napa, Sonoma and the central coast). In 2017, he began collaborating with the Chamber of Agriculture in France where he now gives viticulture classes and workshops to local estate viticulturists and wine producers in Northern Rhone and Burgundy. In 2018 he started working as a consultant for several vineyards throughout France located in Burgundy, Provence and Beaujolais.
Natalie discovered fine wine while working at a local wine bar during her undergraduate studies at the University of Oregon. After graduation, with a thirst for wanderlust and adventure, she arrived in Toro, Spain just in time to work the 2009 harvest at Bodega Elias Mora. Thereafter, she completed a master’s degree in Enology and Viticulture from the University of Valladolid in Ribera del Duero.
Upon returning from Spain, Natalie moved to Healdsburg, California in the heart of Sonoma wine country. After a viticulture internship at Winsor Oaks, she landed at Mill Creek Winery and during a four-year tenure worked up to vineyard manager and assistant winemaker. Subsequently, she transitioned to Westwood Winery in the same capacity, striking a balance between vineyard and cellar. In the off-season of 2013, she worked harvest in Victoria, Australia at Delatite Winery - a fully biodynamic vineyard and winery estate.
Fulfilling a long and sought after dream, in 2015 she travelled to Bordeaux, France for vintage at Chateau Fontenil, where Dany and Michel Rolland celebrated their 30th harvest at the winery. In her global winemaking experience, Natalie has been privileged to learn from and work with renowned winemakers David Ramey, Aaron Pott and Dany Rolland.
While at Mill Creek and Westwood, Natalie specialized in implementing organic and biodynamic viticulture practices. She approached Philippe Coderey in June 2012 and asked to apprentice in order to learn more about biodynamics. Given her authentic zeal for the subject, Coderey agreed to the mentorship. At Westwood Winery, together they converted Annadel Gap Vineyard (Sonoma Valley AVA) from conventional to biodynamic in just 3 seasons. Currently Natalie works as viticulturist and associate winemaker at Salvestrin Winery in St. Helena, Napa Valley, where they are transitioning the noted Dr. Crane Vineyard to organic (and hopefully biodynamic, given enough time).