David O’Reilly

Age: 47

Place of birth: Belfast.

Where you live: Newberg, OR.

Name of Company you work for: Owen Roe Winery

City you work in: Newberg.

Profession: Winemaker, Winery Owner

Why I chose this career: Growing grapes and making wine from them satisfies my love of farming with the creativity of crafting flavor from the soil.

Status: Married

Family: Wife: Angelica, children: Dominic, Brigid, Moira, Marie-Therese, Eamonn, Roisin, Cormac, Joseph Leo.

The proudest moment of my career: Enjoying an entire meal raised by us and having it served with our wine. The evening of hilarity was spent with my parents, several siblings, and my wife and children.

Biography:  The seventh of twelve children, David O’Reilly grew up in Belfast with memorable visits to his relatives in rural County Cavan. Life there was made all the more tranquil for him by the distance from sectarian strife and the introduction of fresh farm products.

He quickly discovered the beauty of small scale subsistence farming where after a long day in the fields, the extended family gathered for meals that were wholly obtained from local environs.

Forced out of their home during the Troubles, the brood made its home in North America, settling in the central coast of British Columbia. He realized a different beauty with stunning mountains, amazing fishing, and again, subsistence living.

After studying classics at Thomas Aquinas College in the Central Coast of California he and his young wife Angelica searched for a way to satisfy their mutual desire to raise from the soil to the table a marketable product.

They chanced upon some vineyards in California and a match was made. Not only did they start Owen Roe winery, they also have been raising their family of eight children. Over the past fourteen years David has focused on winemaking with fruit from the Yakima Valley.

For O’Reilly, the wines from this region present the new world with an outstanding opportunity to harmonize old world characteristics. The barren and rocky soils of the region force the concentration of flavor in fruit, which is also enhanced by long hours of consistent sunshine. Cool evening temperatures preserve levels of high acidity and low pH. From sites in this region he is able to harvest fruit that best translates naturally into Owen Roe’s signature style, wines with deep fragrance and lush flavors balanced by elegant structure.

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