The Family Behind Donelan Family Wines

Meet the Donelans — a family full of ambition, character and consideration. Each member brings unique qualities to the history of the Donelan name and the wines themselves. Founded in 2009, Donelan Family Wines is a boutique urban winery in Santa Rosa, CA, with a deep dedication to making simply great wine. The wines they produce, however–and the father-son trio behind each bottle–are far from simple.

Founder – Joe Donelan


Joe Donelan has lead a career as one of Northern California’s premier wine producers. His journey of wine discovery began at Topper’s Restaurant on Nantucket Island in the 1980s where he was led by an inspired sommelier. From sophisticated wine drinker to master oenophile, he set out to Northern California to help co-found Pax Wine Cellars and pursue his passion for wine.

Joe believes wine is a living being and should be treated as such, making his wines individualistic and dynamic. Donelan Family Wines is personal to Joe, and so are the relationships he makes with his customers. He calls each new member of the winery and hand-writes thank you notes for every order. The Donelan family has a special connection to the wine they produce and want their members to feel that connection, too. Joe’s devoted passion is to change the world with his wines and share them with everyone who wants to discover them.

The Dynamic Duo – Tripp & Cushing Donelan


Tripp Donelan, director of sales, shares the same passion as his father for educating people on the passion behind every glass of Donelan wine. The customer service and quality that goes into each sale is evident thanks to Tripp and the lessons he has learned from his father.

“Know what your customers eat for breakfast, lunch and dinner,” Tripp says is his favorite Joe-ism.

Also a lesson handed down? Never give up. “He never gives up and is an incredible salesperson.”

In between constant travels, Tripp is continuously thinking about the future of the business and maintaining strong, loyal relationships with every customer who is part of the family journey.

Founder of an LA-based production company, Cushing Donelan realized that joining the family business full-time would fulfill his passion for engaging with people and traveling. As the winery’s director of marketing, he is doing just that.

Cushing’s ultimate desire is for each customer to feel connected to each elegant bottle of Donelan wine. His father’s ability to connect with people is admirable.

“My father is an incredible storyteller that can make anyone feel included and excited.”

As a fine arts major with keen attention to detail and his ability to express the wine with words (like his father), Cushing’s creativity has revolutionized the Donelan brand.

Cushing’s favorite Joe-ism? “The 3 Ps are the key to success: passion, persistence and patience.”

Visit Us

Located in the heart of Sonoma County, a unique and educational wine tasting experience awaits you. Not only will you taste extraordinary wines, but you will learn from extraordinary people. At Donelan Family Wines, every team member is considered family, and each person who walks through the door is treated as such. If you are looking to try wines that go above and beyond, join us on our journey! Reserve your tasting today.

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