Some folks eat and drink just to live; they put a little in the tank and don’t think twice about who made it, what was added to it, or where it came from. Some of us, on the other hand, dedicate a handsome portion of each day thinking up their next meal, searching for ingredients, and delving ever deeper into the rich history and culture of the wine and food world. That’s Dan Beekley, and that’s exactly why he jives so well with us here at Devil’s Food — he likes to know the people behind every plate, glass, and bottle.
I first met Dan almost 15 years ago when I was working the cheese counter inside his wine shop. Soon my wife was working on the wine side, and our families have been close ever since. When Devil’s Food was looking for affordable (and excellent) European wines to feature alongside our outstanding Oregon offerings, I couldn’t imagine going to anyone other than Dan.
As owner and managing partner of CorksCru Wine Merchants and their wholesale arm, Vinify Wines, Dan spends the majority of his time on the ground in Europe. There’s an ocean of delicious wine out there, ready to drink. How can one possibly decide what to buy?
For Dan, the quality of the beverage itself isn’t enough. He spends time getting to know the people who make your wine – how they cultivate their grapes, what makes them passionate about their project, and their plans for the future. He selects wines from small, family-run wineries that take pride in the beautiful beverages they make. (A common thread is that the winemakers are often women.) They are real people, with real families and lives — just like you.
Originally from Pennsylvania, Dan has spent his entire professional life in the wine industry. He favors fruit-forward, clean, well-made wines with a great story to go along with them. A bit like a perennial 10-year-old boy, Dan truly comes to life when he tells us stories of the people he meets on the wine route. His face is animated and his arms start waving. It’s clear that he loves what he does.
Dan loves out-of-the-way wineries, and is always thrilled to be the first US importer to bring in wines from a particular region. He also believes that wine is, first and foremost, a beverage, and should be more enjoyable than ponderous.
Just as only the best ingredients are fit to be Devil’s Food, the same goes for the wines we offer. Available by consumption from our sophisticated bar program, we rotate through dozens of Dan’s found treasures from France, Italy, Spain, and Portugal. These are not your typical soulless catering wines; these are hand-selected small production wines made with integrity, and they will undoubtedly be a huge hit at your party. And if you still thirst for more, I suggest you sign up for one of CorksCru’s club offerings… You won’t be disappointed!