Winemaker: Wayne Bailey
Wayne Bailey’s winemaking journey started 28 years ago when he worked as a consultant in the food and beverage industry with a focus on wine for over 15 years. He then received an opportunity to consult for wine brands in France and he knew it was something he had to do. Wayne discovered that winemakers in Burgundy identified themselves as “farmers first,” which he related to immensely since he grew up on a farm in Iowa. His three-month journey turned into two years, creating meaningful relationships with winemakers, appreciating their organic farming methods as he worked side by side those vignerons learning “hands on” and to find his love of Pinot Noir and Chardonnay. Ever since, Wayne has taken the most holistic approach to the wines he crafts and aims to portray that in every Bailey Family wine made.
Founded in 2019, Bailey Family Wines aspires to create the most elegant wines from the Willamette Valley from the fruit grown in each vintage.
We focus our attention on growing the highest quality grapes possible and parent the fruit through the fermentation process. By limiting yields and restraining barrel treatment, we are able to produce fine wines that give a pure expression of our beautiful vineyards and their terroir.
Wine is a wonderful gift from nature (an agricultural product), and its qualities vary according to the year and all of the different elements in a vine’s growing environment. The French term that describes this concept is ‘terroir.’ Terroir is the combination of the soil, rainfall, drainage, exposure, and climate specific to a given site and the vigneron’s intervention.
It is Wayne’s job to draw out the potential of the grapes and to let the story of this place–the terroir of the vineyard and the year of the vintage–be told with clarity in the wine.
As his experience has grown from making wines in the Willamette Valley, the wines have grown in stride. With everything from bright fruit characteristics, new clones, variations in fermentation, and various barrel coopers Wayne has more options to enhance the wines to new heights.
The result is a wine portfolio that reflects both the “terroir” and characteristics that typify each varietal to their optimum expression. These wines show both great fruit characteristics coming from the vineyard and great expressions of the wine, via selecting the best barrels from the top fermentation batches from the most pristine sections of the vineyards for each varietal.
These wines display the perfect balance of fruit and earth tones, acid and tannins; front, mid, and finish palate, demonstrating a totally integrated wine from beginning to end, accessible at a youthful age and old world ageability.