About Iterum Wines

A welcome to Iterum

from Founder, Proprietor and Winemaker, Joe Dobbes

Iterum Wines represents my full circle winemaking story and celebrates the crescendo of my career.

In 2017 I found myself ready for a reset. I stepped back from my original wine project, Dobbes Family Estate and Wine by Joe. I took two years off from winemaking, tasted through my peers’ wines and revisited my own wine portfolio dating back to the start of my career.

After more than three decades in the industry, it became clear to me that it was time to go full circle, and to get small again. In 2018 my wife Patricia and I purchased our dream property, which we named Orchard House Vineyard. The organically farmed 21 acre estate, located on the west slope of the Eola-Amity Hills, is now home to my new project, Iterum Wines. 

Iterum is Latin for again, afresh, once more.

The purpose behind Iterum is to get back to my roots. I am just where I want to be. I’m back in the vineyard kicking the dirt, farming, creating, experimenting, and I am rejuvenated. I’ve emerged with a hyper focused vision and am making the most exciting wines of my life. 

The Iterum portfolio includes Estate Pinot Noir, Chardonnay, Sauvignon Blanc and Methode Traditionelle Sparkling Wine. Also included in the portfolio are a handful of ‘Old Friends’, bottlings produced from truly exceptional vineyards, varietals, and rare clones which I’ve worked with over the past 37 vintages, and are essential to my story.

I am excited to share my work with old friends and new ones to come.

Farming Philosophy: The Land

“Some of the most expensive real estate in the world is vineyard property. Vineyard farming is simply real estate development, but in the most beautiful means. As a farmer and winemaker the ideal scenario is to acquire, control and nurture the best vineyard sites possible. Only then can you hope and aspire to produce special and distinctive high quality wines which stand out from the crowd ” – Joe Dobbes

Before Joe’s direction took a clear trajectory toward winemaking, his focus in school was environmental biology, the impetus that fuels farming decisions across Iterum’s Estate, Orchard House Vineyard. 

The entire estate from the old growth oaks, vegetable gardens and the vines, are farmed organically. Organic farming is a worthwhile commitment and undertaking which is often tested by our cool climate vintage variations, and our ever-evolving global climate weather circumstances.

Iterum’s objective is to preserve nature’s intent, to allow the land to speak and simultaneously protect the ecosystem for a sustainable future. What does this look like day to day? No herbicides, no pesticides, preservation of indegenus and native plant species, no irrigation, minimal tilling, and promotion of beneficial insects.

Winemaking Philosophy: The Hand

“As a winemaker I continually push the boundaries to produce distinctive, exciting and unique wines which reflect the vintage, and simultaneously exploit the highlights of the vineyard site and its terroir” – Joe Dobbes

Iterum’s winemaking philosophy stems from what Joe calls, “land over the hand”. Joe’s winemaking starts in the vineyard spending time getting to know the personality of the vintage and the crop at hand. This leads to a deep connection to the land each year and an understanding of how he will shape the finished wine. Joe’s goal is to showcase a sense of specific place and vintage variation in every wine he makes.

Stylistically one should expect Iterum Wines to be true to varietal character and to possess beautiful balance. They are highly fruited, with explosive aromatics, intense flavors, and have a full textured mouthfeel finishing with a fresh and bright acidity. A full textured mouthfeel, however, does not translate to the winemaking goal and belief that “bigger is better”. The Iterum Wines exhibit a beautiful, natural, and simultaneous tension, or tautness due to the interplay of the acidity with the wine’s overall extract and flavors. This interplay enhances and elevates the degree of excitement and uniqueness of the Iterum Wines.

Joe Dobbes of Iterum Wines

Joe Dobbes
Proprietor, Winemaker & Vineyard Manager

Joe Dobbes is a long-time Oregon native and business owner. He started his first business at the age of 12 growing and selling Marionberries to Smuckers. With a knack for farming, a love for cooking and a degree in biology, winemaking proved to be his career path early in life.

Joe got his start in the Old World in the mid-80’s as an apprentice at Weingut Erbhof Tesch in West Germany. This first winemaking experience abroad led to an excitement to return home and sink his teeth into the Willamette Valley wine world which was at its precipice of gaining international acclaim. At the first ever International Pinot Noir Celebration in McMinnville, Oregon, Joe was offered the opportunity of a lifetime in Burgundy, France. He worked the 1988 vintage in Burgundy under the tutelage of two luminaries, Christophe Roumier of Domaine G. Roumier and Dominique Lafon of Domaine des Comptes Lafon.

Working with these luminaries, literally opened the cellar doors to numerous iconic wine producers throughout France. Fully aware of the remarkable opportunity he found himself in, Joe immersed himself into the Burgundian winemaking culture and teachings passed on through centuries. Some of which he practices in the vineyard and winery today.

Back home, Joe grew his experience working with Oregon’s own icons like Elk Cove, Ken Wright and others before spending 6 vintages as Head Winemaker for Willamette Valley Vineyards from 1996 to 2001, which he refers to as graduate school. In 2002 with his life savings in one pocket, Joe started his own multi-faceted winemaking company, Wine by Joe and Dobbes Family Estate in Dundee, Oregon. Wine by Joe grew to be one of the largest wine brands in Oregon and was named the “Number 1 Hot Brand” in the United states in 2011 by Wines Business Monthly. 

After 15 years at the helm of his company and wearing many hats, Joe stepped aside in 2017 essentially semi-retiring to form Dundee Mobile Bottlers. In 2018 he realized his dream by purchasing a 21-acre vineyard property and estate home on the west bench of the Eola-Amity Hills of Oregon’s famous Willamette Valley where he and his wife Patricia reside. 

After many years of overseeing the making of large quantities of wine he has come full circle and returned to his winemaking roots at the Orchard House Estate.

Co-Owner of Iterum Wines, Patricia Dobbes

Patricia Dobbes
Co-Proprietor & Joe’s Right Hand

Co-founder of Iterum Wines and wife of Joe, is Patricia Dobbes. If you’ve met Patricia, you know she comes with a beautiful Colombian accent, and a spicy personality! Patricia was born on the Caribbean coast of Colombia in Sincelejo. She received her degree in law from the University Externado of Colombia in Bogotá. In 1999 the political situation in her country compelled her to make the difficult decision to move to the United States. Here she found support from her family, friends and the government. In 2010, after 11 years of residency, Patricia was granted American citizenship.

She became enthralled with the Willamette Valley wine industry soon after immigrating to Florida and later, Oregon’s Umpqua Valley. In 2002 Patricia came to Salem, Oregon to visit her sister where she met her husband Joe Dobbes. He introduced her to the world of Pinot Noir. As Patricia would say in her language, “El Amor por el Pinot Noir”.

Since meeting Joe, Patricia has been in the wine industry. At Joe and Patricia’s original project, Dobbes Family Estate, Patricia worked in the Tasting Room as the Hospitality Ambassador. Today, Patricia wears many hats at Iterum, from hospitality, accounting, sorting fruit, vineyard pruning and barrel topping. When visiting the estate today, you’ll often find her hiking through the vineyard. She says that her soul and heart are infused in this land here at the Orchard House Estate