Created on two ideals, a wine was born. Produce a stellar Cabernet Sauvignon from Sonoma County and connect with each person who tastes it.
It's been said that there are two ingredients in the making of wine, grapes and the winemaker. While Six Degrees surely has the first, the wine would be nothing without the second. However, calling Ryan Waugh simply a winemaker would not do justice to all the work he does. Better to call him a brand ambassador.
At just 39 with 15 vintages behind him Ryan is one of the youngest winemakers working in Napa and Sonoma. Born and raised in the Willamette Valley of Oregon, he graduated from Santa Clara University with a degree in Biology and minors in Marketing and Environmental Studies. While at Santa Clara, a friend's father shared a special bottle of Cabernet Sauvignon, which sparked an intense passion for wine and inspired the idea to start his own winery.
That inspiration led him to find a wine job, any wine job close to school. He found it at Savannah Chanelle winery in the Santa Cruz mountains where he began working with Michael McNeill. Under Michael's guidance, Ryan learned that making great wine starts outdoors in the vineyard, and by doing the work there, with minimal interaction once the wine gets to barrel, he could create wines that were true representations of their varietals, exhibiting unique flavors and great structural depth.
In 2001 he founded Waugh Cellars, which now produces 3000 cases of award winning wine annually: a Russian River Chardonnay, a Napa Valley Cabernet Sauvignon and Waugh Cellars' best selling Dry Creek Zinfandel. Smaller quantities of Pinot Noir, Riesling and Petite Sirah are also produced, sold exclusively through the Friends of Waugh Cellars - an allocation based wine club.
Ryan spends most of his time when not in the vineyard, on the road, hosting wine dinners and tastings at some of the finest restaurants in the country. It is here that he spends time with customers old and new and shares with them his experiences in winemaking and connects them through the unique joys of wine drinking.
It is this direct connection to our customers that led to the development and creation of Six Degrees.