S2, Episode 2: Bells Up Winery & Whiskey Hill Winery
December 9, 2018
Welcome back to Wine Crush! In this episode, we sat with two local winemakers, Dave and Chris. The first has its roots in something all of us here at PRP love: Music. And the second truly demonstrates how with the art of wine comes family, friendships, and good times.
Established in 2013, Bells Up Winery in Newberg, Oregon was started by award-winning winemaker David Specter and his wife, Sara Pearson Specter. The inaugural vintages were released in Spring 2015, which coincided with the opening of the estate winery and tasting room facility—a renovated pole barn on the property.
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.
Whiskey Hill – Chris Helbling
To go all the way back to the beginning, Gary and Carolyn Postlewait met in high school on the neighboring family farm across the road. After marrying, they continued to farm all over the valley including crops of berries, broccoli, corn, wheat, cucumbers, grass seed and more. They dedicated long hours to their crops, but more importantly to their family. 20 years ago they moved to their current location and made the property the beauty it is today. The farm is currently home to two Filbert Orchards, three blocks of Pinot Noir and a herd of red and white face Hereford’s.
While Chris was sitting around and trying to keep our children from destroying the restaurant, he mused, “How hard could it be to make wine?” They quickly realized we needed something to press with. So, Gary’s father, Fred Postlewait, lent them a press he built by hand about 40 years prior. The same press is still on display in their Tasting Room today.