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

  • Pinot Noir

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

  • Syrah

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

  • Chardonnay

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

  • Cabernet Sauvignon

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

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

  • A to Z Wineworks

    A to Z Wineworks was started in 2002 by four friends, Oregon wine industry veterans, Deb Hatch...

  • Bishop Creek Cellars

    We believe that the art of winemaking starts with quality fruit. Planted in 1988, our grapes come...

  • Milbrandt Vineyards

    Farming is in our blood. Our parents, grandparents, aunts and uncles all made their living workin...

  • Chateau Bianca

    Chateau Bianca Winery is a family owned and operated winery established in the mid-1980’s. The an...

  • Coelho Winery

    Coelho Winery is a small family-owned winery located in Amity, Oregon. Our vineyard was planted ...

  • Wine by Joe

    Yes, there really is a Joe! Joe Dobbes is the man behind your bottle of Wine By Joe. As the sole ...

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Oregon on Snooth

  • Dear Judy,He had an abnormal love for that bottle.  I too have been very ... as OT said, buy him a nice Oregon Pinot.  If he's unappreciative, he's a jer Read More

    Forum post in the topic Looking to Redeem Myself

  • Terrance - here are some others you might want to try.Milbrandt, Chateau St. ... $20Joel Gott produces one in Oregon and there are other producers, like WillaKenzie that are relatively easy to find. You could try Seven Hills if you can find it.People have mentioned some from CA - J Vineyards puts it in oak for a while so theirs is a bit differ... Read More

    Forum post in the topic Pinot grigio

  • Interesting that there are so few Italians being nominated.An unfortunate ... ... California and three from Oregon.  I can't speak from experience, but I have heard some very positive reports about Pinot Gris from Oregon.BTW, welcome Brenda.  We are pleased to have you along.  Your recomendation sent me off to Google.  Sounds like a good on Read More

    Forum post in the topic Pinot grigio

  • I thought the Au Bon Climat would show much better, but it was squarely in the ... wine tasted was the A to Z Oregon Pinot which showed clean and fresh, but with little depth and personality. The '12 Billard-Gonnet from Burgundy was very much the same, it showed a bit weedy, fresh, but uninteresting. next, the domaine Bart turned some heads as... Read More

    Forum post in the topic Wine and crime, part...

  • Firesteed Pinot Noir 2013


    Had at chef Joseph Read More

    Wine review by gmb468

  • I wish I had some of that Stoller Pinot Noir from Dundee Hills in Oregon.  We were wine club members of Domain Serene in the Dundee Hills appellation before giving them up due to the high cost.  The Pinot was most excellent though.Tonight while relaxing watching the Imitation Game via Net Flix, I opened a 2010 Silver Oak (Napa Valley) that I had... Read More

    Forum post in the topic Whatcha drinking tonight?

  • Columbia Winery Composition Red Blend NV


    A bit of green fruit on the nose including ripe red apple and grape aromas with plenty of more classic cherry and cinnamon aromas as well. Clean and tart in the mouth, with raspberry and ripe cherry flavors, a hint of brown sugar and reasonably strong tannins in the glass with some blueberry notes on the finish. Very approachable and easy drinki... Read More

    Wine review by Snooth Editorial

  • Stoller Pinot Noir Reserve 2011


    Very tasty Dundee Oregon pinot. Day 2 this is still vibrant with ripe red and black cherries, cranberry, pomegranate, nice but not over the top acidity, subtle tannins and a medium finish. Read More

    Wine review by vin0vin0

  • Left Coast Cellars Pinot Noir Cali's Cuvee 2013


    Quite hot on the nose, but with a lovely floral note of crushed violet and nice red fruit. The heat suggests this may be a bit young today, but the heady fruit is still quite exquisite and inviting in the glass. In the mouth it's full and rich, with ripe red bunches of raspberry, strawberry and dark cherry. The soft tannins concentrate on the fr... Read More

    Wine review by Snooth Editorial

  • Montinore Estate Pinot Noir 2013


    This is a fantastic Bottle of Pinot Noir. It had substantial but light plum, cherry, mocha, caramel overtones that dance on the tongue making it seem wistful and carefree as it dances in your mouth. There is a lot going on in this organically produced wine, its a screaming value at its price, I like it better than some $40 bottles I've had, I'd ... Read More

    Wine review by DTR789WSD

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