The new sparkling winery is the culmination of hard work by founders Jim and Jan Bernau and the support of wine enthusiasts who have invested in the project
DUNDEE, Oregon — Thursday, September 15: Sparkling winery Domaine Willamette welcomed over 500 guests today for a pre-opening celebration that included public officials, wine industry representatives and the craftspeople who helped design and build the new facility.
Domaine Willamette is dedicated to producing sustainably grown sparkling wines that showcase the Willamette Valley’s ability to grow and produce sustainable sparkling wines equal to the great Champagnes.
The new sparkling winery is the culmination of years of hard work by founders Jim and Jan Bernau.
“Today’s celebration is a gesture of our appreciation to Oregon’s public officials. These hard-working individuals support and help grow Oregon’s wine industry,” said Jim Bernau. “It’s also an opportunity to welcome winemakers, winegrowers and those in related industries as part of our collaborative wine industry.”
Domaine Willamette’s creation was possible due to the support of wine enthusiasts who have invested in the project by purchasing shares of preferred stock (NASDAQ: WVVIP). Two dozen of these investors volunteered at Thursday’s event, buoyed by the excitement around Domaine Willamette’s opening on September 19.
“Today was an opportunity to see a dream come true,” said John Shepherd, a volunteer and stockholder since 2007 who purchased more stock in 2017 when the idea of Domaine Willamette was first introduced to investors.
The company is currently in a stock offering period that gives wine enthusiasts an opportunity to become owners in the Oregon winery.
Guests enjoyed wine and food pairings along with music and tours of the winery and gardens. In addition to tastings of Domaine Willamette’s sparkling wines, guests sipped on the pinot noir, cabernet sauvignon, syrah and red blend wines available from Willamette Valley Vineyards’ portfolio of wines.
Aspects of sustainable and biodynamic farming are represented in the winery’s tasting rooms, gardens and artwork. Of note today are the white granite sculptures placed throughout the property and created by master carver Mauricio Saldaña of Guinett Masonry in Vancouver, Washington.
At Tuesday’s event, Saldaña and representatives from Guinett presented the Bernaus with two magnums hand carved from granite as an acknowledgment of the winery’s opening.
Those attending included members of the wine industry. Oregon boasts a collaborative community of winemakers and growers. That collaborative approach is a key aspect of Jim Bernau’s work as he established Willamette Valley Vineyards thanks in part to partnerships with fellow Oregon winemakers such as Bill Fuller of Tualatin Estate Vineyard, established in 1973, and Dick and Betty O’Brien of Elton Vineyard, established in 1983.
Jim joins with his winegrower colleagues in serving as stewards of the country, employees and our community while growing world-class wines and the Oregon story with wine enthusiasts worldwide.
When the winery opens to the public on September 19, wine enthusiasts will be able to make reservations for tours, tastings and food and wine pairings. Wine purchases will also be available in the property’s tasting rooms and in a wine shop expected to open in October.
About Domaine Willamette
Domaine Willamette is Oregon’s first winery exclusively dedicated to producing world-class method traditional sparkling wines in its underground aging cellar at the biodynamically-farmed Bernau Estate Vineyard. Located in the Dundee Hills, the winery offers Oregon-inspired hospitality with wine and food pairings, stunning views, educational tours and beautiful gardens to explore. Wines are paired with Willamette Cuisine – dishes grounded in the high-quality agricultural products of the Pacific Northwest.
About Willamette Valley Vineyards
Founded in 1983 by Oregon native Jim Bernau with the dream of creating world-class Pinot Noir, Willamette Valley Vineyards has grown from a bold idea into one of the region’s leading wineries, earning the title “One of America’s Great Pinot Noir Producers” from Wine Enthusiast Magazine. All of the vineyards have been certified sustainable through LIVE (Low Impact Viticulture and Enology) and Salmon-Safe programs. The Estate Tasting Room features a cozy setting with elegant fireplaces, an expansive patio and an impressive 65-foot lookout tower showing incredible views of the vines and Mary’s Peak. Willamette Valley Vineyards’ mission in growing cool-climate varieties is to create elegant, classic Oregon wines.