Wine Theory Select Photography Photos by Leah W. Meulemans

When three passions collide extraordinary things happen. My love for photography began as a child riding in the back seat of my parents car and framing the landscape in my mind as we drove. My love for travel also began as a child ~ my father traveled often for business and my mother and I would frequently visit. In high school I was able to travel around the US and Europe with my school, and a semester in Budapest in college cemented my love of travel. My husband also shares the love of travel. An anniversary trip to Portugal is where we fell in love with wine and first realized there is so much more to wine than we ever imagined. Since then, almost all of our travel has been dedicated to visiting wine regions around the world including France, Spain, Portugal, Germany, England, Morocco, and of course the US. And it just so happens that wine regions are a beautiful paradise for photographers. It was the summer of 2018, however, that solidified these passions. Spending five weeks working and learning at a small Champagne House allowed me the opportunity to reflect and develop exactly how this all comes together ~ Wine Theory Select Photography.

The People

At first, we were intimidated by traveling to some of the world's most famous wine regions. However, we quickly learned that most of the people creating the wine see themselves as farmers and are very excited and proud to share their wine with visitors. There is always what we call "the awkward moment" when we first arrive. They aren't quite sure how much we know about wine or if we are just tourists looking for a way to get a good buzz, and we aren't sure if they are happy to meet with us, or if we are disrupting their work. After a while, all of this dissipates as we begin asking questions and they begin to realize that we truly are interested in learning about what they do. We often joke that their English is much improved after only a couple of questions!

The Wineries

In another life I either was or will be a winemaker. I feel more at home in a winery than in most other places. I love the smell, the science, the art, and the creation that occurs in these cool, fascinating places.

The Places

Wine regions are nestled in some of the world's most beautiful places. Vineyards have a way of calming and soothing those who visit. Some believe it's the connection with nature that soothes them, others appreciate the linear organization of the rows, while others anticipate and imagine the final product. For me, it's all of these things. One of our favorite things to do when we travel to a wine region is to enjoy a bottle of wine in the vineyard from which it came. A day in the vineyards always calms and inspires me.

Torres El Lloar Winery, Priorat, Spain
Torres El Lloar Winery, Priorat, Spain
Cellar Pasanau Vinyard - La Morera de Montsant, Priorat, Spain
Priorat, Spain
Recaredo VIneyards, Sant Sadurni d'Anoia, Penedes, Spain
Recaredo VIneyards, Sant Sadurni d'Anoia, Penedes, Spain
Domaine Cauhape - Juracon, France
Burgundy, France
Burgundy, France
Domaine Patrice Rion, Burgundy, France
Quinta do Panascal /Fonseca Vineyards - Douro Valley, Portugal
Quinta do Portal - Douro Valley, Portugal
The Stories

Each wine, winemaker, vineyard, and winery has it's own unique story. These stories are meant to be shared and are often full of knowledge and insight. This particular photo was taken while visiting one of California's top sparkling wine producers only months before his retirement. He asked if we had a little more time before we left, there was something he wanted to show us. He led us to this pond, a place he visits every morning, and said his final wine would come from the grapes in the vineyard just on the other side of the pond. He will call it "Reflection." Cheers, Leah


Examples of previous projects

Champagne Dosnon

Emmitt-Scorsone Wines

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