Matthew LaVelle, Winemaker
I'm originally from Palatine, Illinois, a suburb on the Northwest side of Chicago. My family stayed in the Chicagoland area until I was nine years old, when we moved to Grapevine, Texas in the Dallas/Ft. Worth Metroplex. I spent the next 17 years in Texas working various jobs and going to school. I graduated from The Art Institute of Dallas in 2002 with an AAS in Multimedia/Web Development. I worked in various creative web development jobs from 2002 through 2006. In 2003, I moved to Oregon and I now live in Eugene.
I started working full time with my Dad on August 1, 2006 as our Operations Manager. I spent various periods of time working in all the different areas of the business. The 2008 harvest was my first year as our winemaker and it's been a great learning experience working with Gary Carpenter, our consulting winemaker. The 2010 growing season was my first season managing our 16 acre estate vineyard. In 2012 we started our ownership transition and I am currently a full partner in the business.
On July 11, 2009 I married Ashley Fountain, an art teacher originally from Walterville, Oregon. We have two kids and we now live in Eugene. In the Spring of 2009 my now father-in-law Tom Fountain and I built a deck at the top of our vineyard as a family project. We were married on the deck, and it is now used in conjunction with our summer vineyard tours and for private events. Maggie, my daughter, draws on the barrels with colored chalk, and she performed her first punchdown during the 2010 harvest. She's quite the little winemaker. Adam, at only two years of age, has helped my draw raffle winners for various prizes, and at this point in his career is focused on the business and sales side of the business.