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A brief history

The Martínez Bujanda family started making wine in 1889 in the tiny Rioja village of Oyón. This venture became Bodegas Valdemar, a highly respected winery in Spain. Jesús and Ana Martínez Bujanda, the fifth generation of this winemaking family, established Valdemar Estates, the first internationally owned winery in Washington state. The 24,555-square-foot, state-of-the-art winery, tasting room, and restaurant opened on April 27, 2019. The family members have always known that great wine is created in the vineyard. In Spain, they use fruit only from estate vineyards. While the family establishes vineyards in Washington state, they source fruit only from the most renowned vineyards. The family has forged its legacy, one vintage at a time, by never compromising quality.
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Established in 2018

3808 Rolling Hills Lane
United States, Washington


Meet The Team

  • Marie-Eve Gilla

    Born in Burgundy and raised near Paris, Marie-Eve Gilla fell in love with the pastoral lifestyle while working summers on the farm. She earned her Double Masters in Enology and Viticulture at the University of Dijon, gaining practical training in the wineries and vineyards of Burgundy.

    Arriving in the United States in 1991, she worked at various wineries including Argyle, Covey Run, and Hogue. Intending to stay for just a few months, she realized the incredible potential of the Northwest wine industry. In 1999, she married her compatriot Gilles Nicault, now Director of Winemaking at Long Shadows. They moved to Walla Walla in 2001, where Marie-Eve became Forgeron Cellars’ founding winemaker. In 2018, she joined Valdemar Estates.

    Believing firmly that great wines are made in the vineyard, Marie-Eve sources grapes from established vineyards in the Red Mountain and Walla Walla A.V.A to craft her wines. Working in a boutique winery allows her to focus on quality by keeping each vineyard lot separate. This gives each wine the ability to express its full potential. In the cellar, Marie-Eve primarily uses French oak, with moderate toast levels for both fermentation and aging. She has successfully adapted her Burgundian winemaking influences to the riper fruit found in Eastern Washington.

    For example, while making Chardonnay, she periodically stirs the lees to increase mouth feel for a mineral, yet full-bodied and well-balanced, wine. She uses a minimal intervention approach to craft age-worthy reds of great complexity that showcase the beautiful fruit flavors of Washington state.

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  • Devyani Gupta

    Devyani grew up in Portland, Oregon, with two parents who were fantastic cooks and avid wine appreciators. Her interest in wine began at the dinner table, when her father would share wines from around the world and challenge her to identify the characteristics found in the glass.

    Devyani moved to Walla Walla to attend Whitman College and discovered her calling for wine while working for Amavi Cellars. After graduating with honors and degrees in psychology and Spanish, she moved to Seattle to become a research project coordinator for the UW READi Lab, where she studied childhood autism. Although Devyani was conducting meaningful research, she realized that wine had become her true passion, and she knew the cellar was her home.

    In 2016, Devyani eagerly moved back to Walla Walla and enrolled in the local Enology & Viticulture program. As a student, she worked for L’Ecole no. 41, Seven Hills Vineyard, and Figgins Family Wine Estates to immerse herself in all aspects of the wine industry. Upon completing her degree, she became the Viticulture Technician for North Slope Management and Harvest Enologist for FIGGINS.

    Devyani loves the warmth of the Walla Walla community, and has found her home here. As our Assistant Winemaker, Devyani oversees cellar operations and lab analyses. When not in the cellar, you can find her barbecuing for friends, hiking, kayaking, and walking vineyards.

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