Michael Shaps + Michael Heny
In 1990 Michael Shaps moved to France where he enrolled in the Lycée Viticole de Beaune in Burgundy to study enology and viticulture. Here he was privileged to study under the guidance of Burgundy's noted professors and winemakers, working two vintages at the esteemed Maison Chartron et Trebuchet in Puligny Montrachet.
In 1995 Michael moved to Virginia to work at Jefferson Vineyards as head winemaker and general manager, where he quickly accumulated numerous awards and acquired a reputation as one of Virginia’s up-and-coming winemakers. After six vintages Michael ventured out on his own and began producing wine under the now highly regarded “Michael Shaps” label.
In 2004 he partnered with his old mentor and head winemaker at Maison Chartron et Trebuchet and together they opened a winery and rental house in Meursault, France, one of Burgundy’s most renowned winemaking villages.
Maison Shaps is a garage-ist style winery, focusing on small vineyard lots from some of Burgundy’s most famous vineyard sites. These artisanal-style wines are imported to the United States and sold along the East Coast.
Michael opened Virginia Wineworks in 2007. This multi-faceted operation is both the home of the Michael Shaps brand and Virginia’s first custom crush winemaking operation. In 2014 Michael expanded Wineworks into an operation that approaches 30,000 cases of annual wine production.
Known in the industry for his innovation and winemaking expertise, Michael has won numerous awards, spoken at wine conferences in California and throughout the East Coast, and consulted at dozens of reputable wineries in the mid-Atlantic region. Both an innovator and entrepreneur by nature, Michael continues to be a leader in the Virginia wine scene.
Michael Heny studied Mechanical Engineering and Comparative Literature at the University of Virginia. After graduating in 1990, he worked his first harvest at Montdomaine, now the site of Michael Shaps Wineworks. In 1997, Michael joined the winemaking team at Horton Vineyards where he spent many years dedicated to showcasing Virginia wines, and in the spring of 2019 he joined the team at Michael Shaps Wineworks.
When not crafting wine, he enjoys exploring the mountains, woods and streams of Central Virginia and beyond with his wife and two children.
Our Cellar/Vineyard Manager
Even as a child Dawn Stein could always be found outside playing in the dirt. Childhood summers spent learning farming with her great-grandparents while playing in the field and splashing in the creek amongst the bucolic setting of Ferrum, Virginia, paved a winding road to a venerated career cultivating and celebrating the soil she so loved. As the Cellar/Vineyard Manager at Doukénie Winery, Stein leads a team to cultivate Doukénie’s 360 acres and supports the Bazaco family and winemaker Michael Shaps in improving and sustaining viticulture capability for Doukénie’s fourteen different varietals and three hybrids with a specialty in French noble vinifera.
A graduate of the Viticulture Enology Science Technology Alliance, Stein was born in Washington, DC, and raised between Frederick County, Maryland, and southwestern Virginia. Mid-Atlantic terroir is in her heart and bones. A career in viniculture, however, was a surprise detour. “My mantra has always been; you never really get lost; you only find adventures,” said Stein. After many years working in other fields, Stein embraced her mantra and embarked on a new career in wine working at Big Cork Vineyards in Rohrersville, Maryland.
As with her summers farming in the Virginia soil, Stein still has her hands in the dirt. At Doukénie Winery, she applies passions for viniculture and spending time outdoors to ensure the Virginia vines are strong and healthy. With 360 acres, a polar climate with summer temperatures that swing into the blistering 100+ degrees in the summer and below freezing winters, and heavy rain seasons, managing the expansive vineyards at Doukénie Winery is a formidable task. Doukénie has vines as old as 35 years and produces a range of wines that includes classic single varietals and Bordeaux style blends, a traditional method Blanc de Blanc sparkling, white hybrid blends, a blush and a Syrah Rosé, and a late harvest dessert wine. Each one of Doukénie’s delicate varietals requires specific care and attention to thrive. Stein also works closely with winemaker Michael Shaps to continually improve the flavor intensity and fruit quality of Doukénie’s Virginia-grown grapes and maintain the Virginia winery’s history of achieving gold medals at national, state and local competitions.