‘Peace, Bread, Land and Wine’: A Meal With Brooks Winery

Brooks Winery is one of those producers that wine writers crave. There’s a strong family element combined with a tenacious streak of terroir pride. There’s a cool appellation and biodynamic growing. Brooks has the views and killer hospitality.

We want to visit there, and maybe, (probably) we want to be like them. 

It could be said that well-respected Brooks is a proxy for all that’s right in Oregon wine, the Willamette Valley in particular and Eola-Amity Hills, in super-particular.

You’ll see what they stand for in their commitments (below) but I’m also impressed with their robust calendar of events and Brooks University. Talk about a community builder.

Brooks has stated ‘commitments’: peace, bread, land and wine.

Peace. It’s a commitment to Jimi’s* presence in this world. Treat others with dignity and kindness. Be a good friend. Travel the world. Learn lessons from other cultures, and bring them home. Foster community. Be good to the land and the harvest it bears.  Have fun and truly live life.

Bread. We are committed to providing the best culinary experiences in the Willamette Valley. Our organic garden supplies our kitchen with herbs, vegetables, and cut flowers. Our eggs come from our friendly chickens who are fed organically. Anything we can’t get on the grounds is sourced locally.

Land. Brooks Winery is proud to be a Certified B Corporation. Being a B Corp means we are a part of a group of companies using the power of business to solve social and economic problems. Effective  January 1, 2019, 1% of all gross revenues at Brooks will directly benefit a qualified not for profit approved by 1% for the Planet. We are the first winery to participate in the Willamette Valley and one of the first worldwide!  + Demeter Certified Biodynamic.


2017 Estate Riesling

2016 Old Vine Pommard Pinot Noir

…and a meal to pair

No-knead homemade bread and my son’s from-scratch bread recipe in a fraction of the time. Note: as of press time by bread is still a ball of dough. Join the Twitter chat tomorrow to see how it turned out. First ever mother-son colab on L’Occasion, just in time for Mother’s Day.

Garden herbs, red kale and red peppers wrapped in fresh prosciutto

Sauteed tilapia with spring greens and asparagus

Photo Credit: Jill Barth
Jimi Brooks

*Jimi Brooks founded Brooks Winery, a well-respected (and, by all accounts, very fun) figurehead of the biodynamic movement in Oregon and a convincing voice for planting Riesling out that way. In 2004, at the age of 38, Jimi Brooks died unexpectedly from an aortic aneurysm. He left behind an 8-year-old son, Pascal.

I didn’t know Jimi, but his legacy is often recalled fondly when wine people get together. What sticks is the support network that nurtured his winery: his friends and neighbors, his sister Janie Brooks Heuck, winemaker Chris Williams.

The “about us” portion of the Brooks website lists the wineries that helped with harvest in 2004, carried on by friendly hands in the days after Jimi Brooks passed away. Pascal Brooks is an adult now, a student at UC Santa Cruz.

Wine Pairing Weekend

This month our Wine Pairing Weekend Group is focused on Willamette Valley Biodynamic wines.

Join our Twitter chat at 10am central on May 5, 2019 — follow #winepw as we discuss the behind-the-scenes of our recipe pairings and wine tasting. You’ll have the full attention of these talented people. And look at all the cool wineries featured!

David of Cooking Chat has prepared “Salmon, Farro and Mushrooms with Winderlea Pinot Noir”

Camilla of Culinary Adventures with Camila is celebrating with “Simple Pleasures, A Birthday Cheeseboard, & Keeler Estate Vineyards’ 2017 Terracotta Amphorae Riesling”

Here on L’Occasion we’ve got “‘Peace, Bread, Land and Wine’: A Meal With Brooks Winery”

Jennifer of Vino Travels will share “Biodynamic Wines of the Willamette Valley with King Estate”

Lori of Dracaena Wines will present “Continuing the Biodynamic Legacy #WinePW

Jane from Always Ravenous pairs “Wild Alaskan Salmon with Herbed Ricotta and Oregon Pinot Noir”

Pinny of Chinese Food and Wine Pairings combines “Biodynamic Grüner Veltliner and Pinot Noir from Johan Vineyards Plus Surf ‘n’ Turf Dinner”

Linda of My Full Wine Glass shares “Ode to Oregon: Johan’s Biodynamic Expression of Place (#WinePW)”

Gwendolyn Alley from Wine Predator will present “Our land is our life and our life is our wine” — Cooper Mountain Pinot Paired with Duck #WinePW

Deana from Asian Test Kitchen has whipped up “Oregon Orange Wine Sparkles with Indian Curry”

Wendy Klik A Day in the Life on the Farm discovers “Dammit!! These are some great wines from Willamette.

Lauren Walsh of The Swirling Dervish will tempt us with “Pork Loin, Mushrooms, and Fiddlehead Ferns Meet Biodynamic Pinot Noir from Bergström Wines (#WinePW)”

Martin of Enofylz Wine Blog brings us “A Taste of Cooper Mountain Vineyards at the Table #WinePW

Jeff of Food Wine Click is pairing “Biodynamic Willamette Valley with Brick House and Harissa Chicken”

Our host, Jade of Tasting Pour, will share “Thai Green Curry Rockfish and Montinore Estate Gewurztraminer #WinePW”

Please note that many of the wines featured here are samples, provided by the wineries. On L’Occasion, all opinions are independent and we are never paid to write about a wine.

33 thoughts on “‘Peace, Bread, Land and Wine’: A Meal With Brooks Winery

  1. I am sure the bread turned out lovely with all that love floating in the air and landing upon it. A perfect meal for pairing with a wine that holds love in high esteen.


  2. Great pairing between the Brooks Riesling and Pinot and home-made bread, prosciutto and tilapia. Love the title of your post too, “Peace, Bread, Land and Wine”. Sounds like it can be used as a book name – like “Eat Pray Love” by Elizabeth Gilbert. Could be a good title for your next book 🙂


  3. Peace. Bread. Land. Wine. The first three are words originally from the communist manifesto (and used on our runaway red pinot noir bottling) and my brother added “wine”. We have been using these words that he gave to us back in 1999 as our purpose. This is a lovely lovely write up and i am going to make sure we make the pairings for our team. We need to get you up to Brooks. I will DM you. Cheers and look forward to the whole experience this morning!


    1. Thanks for the endless generosity. It’s been cool to get to know Brooks a bit better and dig into your incredible wines. We totally MUST stay in touch. Thank you!


  4. If you want to visit please plan to stay with us. Once were aren’t living in 2 houses (and renovating 2 houses) we are happy to host #winepw friends. So glad you enjoyed the story and the bread looks divine.


  5. Wine is all about the stories, and Brooks sure has a compelling one. I imagine a visit to the vineyards could inspire all of us to be better humans and stewards of the planet. And I love the bread-baking exercise with your son: you’re creating memories that he’ll keep with him his whole life.


  6. Peace, Bread, Love, & Wine – love the Brooks Winery commitments. Truly lessons we can all follow. I think I need to make some bread this week with my daughters! Cheers.


  7. What a wonderful story of collaboration! I also love the mission statement. The bread baking also strike a cord with me since I’ve started doing that with my dad from time to time in recent years.


  8. We visited Brooks a couple of years ago. As is so happened we ate before we arrived. Upon arrival I wish we hadn’t because they we whipping up some wine and food pairings that day. But certainly there was wine, and they were spectacular! Thanks for sharing Jill!


  9. This warms my food-loving heart, Jill! I love baking with my kids and you have me longing to do it this weekend…even though my husband is trying to cut down on bread on carbs. Ugh. The 40s is a challenging decade to admit how your body processes food differently. Thanks for the inspiration though. Cheers!


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