Byron Dooley, Owner & Winemaker
Seven of Hearts Winery, McMinnville, OR
Byron and Dana Dooley transitioned from high tech in 2001 to follow their passions in wine and chocolate. He studied enology and viticulture at Napa Valley College, interned for a respected Pinot noir producer in Sonoma, planted a small vineyard on Howell Mountain in Napa, and produced wine from that vineyard. After Byron earned his winemaking degree, he and Dana were drawn to Oregon’s Willamette Valley for its beauty, climate, and remarkable Pinot Noir. In 2004, they purchased and planted the 12-acre Luminous Hills Vineyard in the Yamhill-Carlton AVA, a property once owned by Steve Jobs, co-founder Apple Computers.
While Dana focuses on her chocolates business, Byron works with many growers and sources Pinot Noir from distinctive vineyards within the sub-AVAs of the Willamette Valley, producing single vineyard Pinot Noirs, Chardonnay, Pinot Gris and Riesling with site focus as well as blends that capture the broader expression of each vintage in the Willamette Valley. Byron also makes wines from the Columbia Valley (both Oregon and Washington) from sources that are ideal for warm the weather varietals he also loves, including Bordeaux and Rhone style blends, and many others. The winemaking philosophy and approach for each wine to reflect the place and vintage where it was grown, modeled after traditional old-world wines. Only natural methods are used in Seven of Hearts wine, such as native yeast fermentation, whole cluster fermentation where appropriate, minimal intervention and no additives.
Best Private Wine Tours with Seven of Hearts Winery
Join Byron and Dana on a vinicultural exploration of New Zealand, visiting the county’s most renowned wineries including Cloudy Bay, Herzog and Craggy Range. Experience the highlights of “The Land of the Long White Cloud” from bottom to top, visiting Queenstown, Blenheim, Wellington, Napier, Rotorua, Auckland and Waiheke Island.