Hither, Thither, and Whither
The Cast of Characters:
KYLE MACLACHLAN, Proprietor, vintner, actor.
DANIEL WAMPFLER, Winemaker, vigneron, gadgeteer.
…In Which a Gentleman Came of Age in Yakima
’Twas an idyll indeed
Growing up in rural Yakima, Washington, Kyle MacLachlan’s days were filled with picking apples, canning peaches, and fishing the Yakima and Naches Rivers. His father kept up a lush sprawling garden while his mother encouraged Kyle to pursue his budding interest in acting. As a college theater student at the University of Washington, Kyle reveled in his holiday commutes between college and home, cruising his ’67 Mustang past snow-peaked mountains and across high golden plateaus. He loved the landscape of his Washington home, and he longed to create something lasting and meaningful that would honor this special place.
And Befriended a Beast
(The bear, the man, the myth)
Kyle’s first Shakespearean role after college was as Romeo on the main stage at the Ashland Shakespeare Festival; he went on to play many more in between star turns in films like Dune (1984) and Blue Velvet (1986). Our mascot, Bear, is Kyle’s homage to the Bard of Avon, whose most absurd stage direction calls for a bear to appear, for reasons unexplained, in the tragicomedy A Winter’s Tale. Bear, to us, embodies the similarities between the time-honored crafts of acting and winemaking. Both call for careful study, intensive work behind the scenes, and a little bit of magic. Bear is also—if we’re being honest—Kyle’s best imaginary friend.
I am gone for ever.”
Exit, pursued by a bear.
Act III, Scene iii
William Shakespeare —
And Sallied Forth and Then Sallied Back
To make an Enticing elixir
Kyle’s career flourished, both in movies and in television series such as Twin Peaks, Desperate Housewives, Sex & The City, and Portlandia. But the more Kyle traveled to perform, the more he missed his family and the natural beauty of the Pacific Northwest. So he began making trips home to visit his dad, Kent. The two got in the habit of touring Eastern Washington’s backroads together, visiting farmsteads, antique stores, and winery tasting rooms. A fateful father-and-son visit to Dunham Cellars in Walla Walla led to the début, in 2005, of Kyle’s secondary creative pursuit, a very fine wine called Pursued by Bear.
In League with a Fine Personage
A Winemaker by the name of Daniel Wampfler
Daniel Wampfler studied brewing, distillation, food science, horticulture, and viticulture at Michigan State, then added a masters degree in enology for good measure. He has made wine for Ste Michelle Wine Estates and Dunham Cellars, where he met Kyle. Dan has guided oenological operations at Pursued by Bear since 2008. Today, when he isn’t hatching plans for the next vintage of Pursued by Bear, he shares winemaking duties at Abeja with his wife, Amy Alvarez-Wampfler. The Wampflers enjoy playing dominoes and drinking wine with their many friends, including Kyle and Bear.
And Aided by Illustrious Artists
Who Capture Bear Resplendently.
The London, England-based artist Caroline Church was the first to bring Bear to life. Her intricate scratchboard engravings—which look like they belong on the pages of a comedie, tragedie, or historie, adorn our original Pursued by Bear bottling as well as Baby Bear, Bear Cub, and Blushing Bear. For Twin Bear, our second Cabernet Sauvignon, we turned to the more impressionistic style of New York watercolorist Anne Watkins. Walla Walla sculptor Brad Rude brought Bear to life in bronze—please visit our tasting room to admire Bear in his full, furry, fanged glory.