Sasha Davies and Michael Claypool are the team behind Clay Pigeon Winery.
Sasha has spent the past decade working with cheese as a wholesaler, retailer, book author and educator. She has worked with the best and brightest at Artisanal, Murray’s Cheese, and Marlow & Sons, and Beecher’s Handmade Cheese in New York City and also here in Portland at Steve’s Cheese (now Cheese Bar).
Along the way Sasha coerced Michael into spending a summer touring America visiting and interviewing artisan cheesemakers via a project they coined Cheese by Hand. This lead to Sasha serving on the Board of the American Cheese Society. Through her work on the board she helped to launch the country’s first certification exam for cheese professionals in August of 2012.
Michael began working in the wine industry over eight years ago. He studied at the Wine and Spirit Education Trust in NYC while working at Astor Wines. He was fortunate to get the opportunity to assist the wine director at the esteemed Blue Hill at Stone Barns, learning to pair wines from a list of over 2000 bottles with dishes turned out by two of the country’s top chefs- Dan Barber and Michael Anthony.
After working for a year in the cellar and on the dining room floor, Michael went to Sonoma, California to work crush at the small but mighty Papapietro Perry Winery. There he learned about making Pinot Noir and Zinfandel and discovered that making wine was the profession he wanted to pursue.
In 2009 Michael made his first vintage- one barrel of Pinot Noir- and expanded modestly each year until founding Clay Pigeon Winery in 2011. His liver has never forgiven him.