The Bells Up Story:
“If you’re this successful in a career that makes you sick, stressed and miserable… how much more successful would you be doing something you love?”
That’s the question Sara asked Dave nine years ago, following his mental and physical breakdown from more than a decade as a successful corporate tax attorney. This, while watching Sara’s professional mentor battle pancreatic cancer at age 40.
The answer, for us, was that life is too short to spend unhappy. So we turned the basement hobby that brought Dave joy — winemaking — into Bells Up Winery.
Dave left the legal field, dedicating himself full-time to learning the business of making wine as a professional at Henke Winery while we lived in Cincinnati, Ohio.
After Dave won two different amateur national winemaking competitions with two different wines, we decided to relocate to Newberg, Oregon. In 2013, we established Bells Up Winery and our winemaking dreams took root.
Today — micro-boutique, un-domaine and always open by appointment — Bells Up composes handcrafted, classically-styled Oregon Pinot Noir with grapes sourced primarily from micro-growers located on the northern side of the Willamette Valley.
The name “Bells Up” refers to a dramatic moment in classical music where the composer instructs French horn players to lift the bells of their instruments up and project sound with maximum intensity. Dave, a French horn player who performed throughout high school and college, says the winery is his “Bells Up” moment.