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Bells Up Winery
After more than a decade of success as a corporate tax attorney in Cincinnati, Ohio, Dave Specter was emotionally and physically spent. His wife Sara convinced him to leave the profession and they turned the hobby that brought him joy—winemaking—into his new career. The pair had fallen in love with Newberg and the Willamette Valley while on vacation in 2008.
He left his legal career in 2009 to work as an unpaid cellar rat to award-winning winemaker Joe Henke of Henke Winery in Cincinnati. Joe mentored Dave for three years, during which time Dave enrolled in the Washington State University online enology course, earning a certificate. In 2011, Dave won two amateur national winemaking competitions with two different wines in two months; a year later the Specters relocated to Newberg. They established Bells Up in 2013. The first wines were released Memorial Day 2015, coinciding with the opening of the estate winery/tasting room.