Corey Nyman’s day job as a hospitality consultant in his family business, the Nyman Group, gives him a unique perspective over other winemakers. “Not being in the wine business is almost a benefit,” he says. “I launched a brand completely backward. I knew where my vision was—I just needed to prove to myself and everyone else that I could do it.”
A passionate oenophile, Nyman always knew he wanted to have his own label. “No. 1 was to prove to myself that I could do it, and I did really well.” He knocks on some wood. “I was the one who created the idea, created the brand, found the investor. I worked on this for years; it was the chance to start small. But,” he adds, “I am not the winemaker. Fortunately I have someone who is good enough, has amazing talent and makes the wine for me.”
Nyman started small, taking his 2009 Willamette Valley, Ore., pinot noir, under the label of Labor Wines, from inception to release in just 14 months. His upcoming 2010 vintage, though, increased from 280 cases to 336 and will feature the debut of his pinot blanc. By the time he gets to 1,000 cases, he’ll live part time in Oregon, with the long-term goal to run a 4,000-case winery.
Nyman started with Las Vegas as his target market, securing spots at wine temples such as Marché Bacchus, Vesper Bar and N9NE Steakhouse. He’s excited about the upcoming pinot blanc, and “I’ve got one vintage under my belt,” he says. “And I have so much more that I have to do. Since I live here, I wanted to make sure I could take care of some of the restaurants that have taken care of me over the years, and really sell wine to some people in town who are friends and who I wanted to support.”
Nyman’s wine is a reflection of his love of the Willamette Valley, where throughout his career he has returned many times, creating long-lasting work and personal relationships. “This is my ode to Oregon,” he says, “this is my gift back. It is all about collaboration, and they have worked with me, given so much great advice, great recommendations, and I would be nowhere without their support.”