Oregon Wine

The history of Oregon wine-making dates back to the mid 1800s. Horticulturalist Henderson Luelling is credited with planting the first grapes in 1847 in Willamette Valley. His son-in-law, William Meek, won a medal in the 1859 California State Fair for wines made from the Isabella grape (an American hybrid). By the 1880s, vineyards began to take shape throughout the Willamette and Umpqua valleys, with Vitis vinifera stocks imported from Europe for the first time. 

But as with California, the Oregon wine industry was all but wiped out during the Prohibition from 1919 to 1933. In the era following the Repeal, the government allowed fruit-based wines (mostly from berries and Concord grapes) with licenses to “Farmer’s Wineries.”  A handful of vintners worked with vinifera-based wines, but with only a modicum of success. 
 
By the early 1960s, California oenologists at UC Davis became interested in Oregon terroir, even though studies had determined the climate to Read more »

Mentor for Oregon Wines

Craig Donofrio

Craig Donofrio is an Advanced Sommelier in the Court of Master Sommeliers and has worked and consulted for some of the nation's top restaurants. He is chief food/wine photographer at Grapevine Studios (www.grapevinestudios.blogspot.com).

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Popular wines made in Oregon under $20

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Varietals Produced in Oregon View all

  • Syrah

    The irony here is that Syrah’s origins could give Carmen Sandiego a run for her international wallet. Syrah’s deepest...

  • Pinot Noir

    “With so voluptuous a perfume, so sweet an edge, they make the blood run hot,” Joel Fleischman, wine columnist at Van...

  • Cabernet Sauvignon

    “King of the Red Wine Grapes.” The colonizer of the vineyards, pushing native wine grapes into its shadows. The Caber...

  • Chardonnay

    British wine writer and critic, Jancis Robinson, once noted that throughout the 80’s and 90’s in the United States, C...

Subregions of Oregon

  • Columbia Gorge

    The Columbia Gorge AVA is an American Viticultural Area which includes land surrounding the Col...

  • Willamette Valley

      The Willlamette Valley region in Oregon has a wine-making history that dates back to th...

  • Willamette Valley AVA

      The Willlamette Valley region in Oregon has a wine-making history that dates back to the 1...

Popular Wineries in Oregon View all

  • Evening Land Vineyards/ONCE Wines

    Once a year our winemaker collaborates with America's best sommeliers to blend the exclusive wi...

  • Carabella Vineyard

    All Carabella wines are sourced from our 58 acre site in Oregon's Chehalem Mountains. We produce ...

  • Cloudline Cellars

    Cloudline Cellars represents a first for Dreyfus, Ashby—our own wine. Given our love for Pino...

  • Purple Hands Wine

    Purple Hands is owned and operated by Oregon winemaker and oenophile, Cody Wright. Cody grew up i...

  • EIEIO

    At EIEIO & Company we make the best possible wine we can without compromise. To date, this is a ...

  • Sockeye Winery

    In 2003, Andrew Browne launched Precept Wine Brands. He re-joined his partner Dan Baty from Corus...

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Oregon on Snooth

  • Strangeland Oregon Pinot Noir 2010

    Snoothrank:

    Not very impressed by this Pinot. Thin Read More

    Wine review by runningbear


  • Strangeland Vineyards & Winery Pinot Noir NV

    Snoothrank:

    Thin. Not a big fan of this Pinot Read More

    Wine review by runningbear


  • L Ecole #41 Columbia Valley Syrah 2010

    Snoothrank:

    The wine is a beautiful deep ruby color with bit of opacity. The nose is a pleasant combination of ripe berries, smoke and some lovely spice notes, just as you'd expect from a nice quality Syrah. The taste is so pleasant, with a blast of fresh black cherry, blackberry and raspberry up front that subsides into some nice flavors of mocha, dark c... Read More

    Wine review by jtryka


  • Ryan Patrick Vineyards Rock Island Red 2012

    Snoothrank:

    The wine is a lovely deep ruby color in the glass with nice clarity. The nose presents aromas of rich black fruit, blackberries, plum and black cherry with a bit of oak intermixed. The taste isn't nearly as fruit forward as the nose would suggest, with lovely flavors of dark cherry and cassis that give way to some notes of cocoa and baking spi... Read More

    Wine review by jtryka


  • Mark, thanks, it's been 35 years with the same company for me, looking at ... Had one from Russian River, Oregon, Burgundy and Paso.  The Latour was a bit out classed, the Elk Cove was my favorite but the Merry Edwards and the Adelaida were not far behind. The CA pinots were more dark fruit, ripe black cherry and plum whereas the OR was a bit ... Read More

    Forum post in the topic Whatcha drinking tonight?


  • Vino, I remember hearing about Remy on Snooth and being intrigued by it. If I ... do Italian varitities using Oregon and Washington grape Read More

    Forum post in the topic Whatcha drinking tonight?


  • Sandra celebrated her '100 days until retirement' last night in style. ... sampling a Chardonnay and an Oregon white blend (34% Gewurztraminer, 27% Riesling, 26% Pinot Gris, 10% Pinot Blanc and 3% Muscat) called Jezebel.  Feeling no pain at this point, we still had about 60 minutes until the movie started so we stopped in at a wine shop (Swirl... Read More

    Forum post in the topic Weekend Wines


  • RBA, on our last trip to Paso we found a lot more GSM/Rhone blends. Previously ... weeks ago while we were in Oregon visiting our son.Very floral nose with some more on the palate along with dried apricot, orange marmalade and just a hint of clove. The acidity is nice but not mouth puckering and the finish is fairly long, similar to a dessert win Read More

    Forum post in the topic Weekday Wines


  • Torii Mor Riesling Willamette Valley 2014

    Snoothrank:

    Intriguing nose is light with floral aromas of ripe apple and spice framed with dried honey. Quite dry in the mouth, and as dry and pleasantly tart as it is it's almost a surprising entry for the Riesling grape. Look out for lemon and citrus here, clean and fresh on the palate with a bit of varietal character lurking around the edges. Read More

    Wine review by Snooth Editorial


  • Remy Wines Sangiovese Kiona Vineyard 2012

    Snoothrank:

    Nice enough sangiovese from Remy of McMinnville, Oregon. Fairly fruit forward and a bit tart on the tongue. Loads of bright red cherry, a hint of lime and mouth watering acidity. There isn't a lot of body here and the tannins are fairly light weight but this is a fun mid-week drinker, might be a bit on the pricey side. Read More

    Wine review by vin0vin0


  • I have been reading in Wine Speculator about all the vineyards around Portland. Our son lives there, however when we go to visit, we never get to see any. Next time we will.

    Comment by 1013283cience7 1013283 cience7


  • I will be in Oregon for a family reunion at the end of July, which wineries are too good to miss. We will be planning a tasting day for 8 people. Susy

    Comment by 610070Susy Stone 610070 Susy Stone


  • Sloppy spelling. It is Hood River, McMinnville, and Willamette. Those are just three mis-spelled places with regard to Oregon. How many other sloppy spellings are there on the site?

    Comment by 814949zbarnett 814949 zbarnett


  • I drank a wonderful Reisling from Oregon, the name was Next. The restaurant is no longer in business and I do not know the vineyard that produced it. Any help out there?

    Comment by 121273Pat Smoot 121273 Pat Smoot


  • I enjoyed one of the most wonderful Cameron Wines. It was a 2008 Abbey Ridge. Such a beautiful glass of sunshine

    Comment by 137527Glendamcd 137527 Glendamcd


  • Left Coast Cellars produces true, authethentic Pinot Noir with power & delicate style.Try the Cali's Cuvee" 2005. I'd also like to reccomend the Left Coast Cellars Chardonnay complemented with just the right amount of subtle oak.It's balance and complexity rivaled some solidfrench (domaines as well as village wines)burgundies I tasted just days ...

    Comment by 509794wineinsiderone 509794 wineinsiderone


  • Big fan of Willamette Valley Vineyards. The terroir and techniques produce amazing Pinot Noir!

    Comment by 182332The Corkscrew Diary 182332 The Corkscrew Diary


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