Meet the Crew
The crew at Triangle Wine Country are locals who know Portland and the Willamette Valley very well. If you’re visiting the Portland area, or you’ve just relocated here and you need a few recommendations, we are happy to help! This is our home and we look forward to sharing it with you, as well as the Willamette Valley from the perspective of an experienced wine professional. Let’s get “personal about wine”.
Michele & John Margherita
Dan K. Johnson
Michele & John Margherita, Owners/Tour Guides
Our wine journey started many years ago when John and I moved from our home state of New Jersey to the San Francisco Bay Area after our wedding in June 1986. We spent many weekends exploring Napa and Sonoma wineries and fine-tuning our wine palates. Bold blended reds and dry sparkling wines became our favorites. Robert Mondavi was an early influence with an excellent tour and tasting experience and a great combo of reds and whites (birthplace of Fume Blanc) plus concerts on the winery lawn. Our love of wine, movies, and cars drew us to Coppola’s Inglenook vineyard in Rutherford, CA, and the movie memorabilia and auto museum. We visited many wineries in between including Louis Martini, Hess, Schramsberg, Gloria Ferrer, St Supery, Buena Vista, Raymond, Silver Oak. In 1999 we departed the Bay Area for New Jersey to raise our children amongst extended family, but missed access to a serious wine culture. No regrets but our plan was always to return to the West Coast. When our daughter ended up in Oregon for college and stayed, we decided to make Portland our west coast destination. We were drawn by the slower pace, less glitzy vibe and cooler (read less fire hazard) climate. Now we are busy exploring the amazing Willamette Valley and marveling at the variety of wines (not just Pinot Noir), friendly people and constantly changing show-stopping scenery around every bend in the road!
I spent the 2021 pandemic year studying and receiving my Certified Specialist of Wine (CSW) certification (from the Society of Wine Educators), coupled with my chemistry background to assist in understanding the science of making wine, I am ready to guide you around the wines and wineries of the Willamette Valley. Begin or continue your Oregon wine journey with me!
Dan K. Johnson, Tour Guide
As a young boy, my grandparents had vineyards in California. At 21, I moved to Atlanta to “harvest my fruit”. My first career was in the fitness industry by teaching group exercise classes and successfully competing in many fitness competitions. At 30, I moved back to the Pacific Northwest and pursued my love of accounting and finances as my next career. However, my passion for wine never stopped and I completed my first wine course in 2002. After completing my MBA in 2006 I went on to complete my Level Two course with the Wine & Spirit Education Trust (WSET), passing with Merit and later my Level Three Advanced course. I began Triangle Wine Country in 2014 to share my passion for wine with other people. In May of 2020, I began to work full-time with the Small Business Administration (SBA) to assist other businesses struggling through the pandemic and now I provide wine tours part-time.