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

Julia Crowley

Award-winning Wine Writer & Publisher/Creative Content Producer of TheRealWineJulia.com. Snooth Contributor & Professional Wine Judge. Completely charmed by Oregon's earthy, elegant Pinot Noirs.

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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...

  • 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

  • Chateau Bianca

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

  • Purple Hands Wine

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

  • Waterbrook Winery

    Waterbrook Winery in the heart of Walla Walla, Washington is known for producing highly acclaimed...

  • Alexana Winery

    Alexana Wines was born of Dr. Madaiah Revana’s love of the great wines of Burgundy. In the spring...

  • Bishop Creek Cellars

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

  • Carabella Vineyard

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

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Oregon on Snooth

  • Hogue Cellars Genesis Meritage 2010

    Snoothrank:

    No written review

    Wine review by kfminervino


  • Columbia Crest Merlot Columbia Valley Grand Estates 2012

    Snoothrank:

    No written review

    Wine review by doublefantasy


  • Willamette Valley Vineyards Pinot Noir Whole Cluster Willamette Valley 2013

    Snoothrank:

    I ventured this year into Pinot Noirs which I generally dislike with one strong exception. Pinot Noirs with a more bold taste. This one fits the category that I enjoy, it's not subtle, it actually has some crazy tastes going on. This one is a beautiful bomb. Most reviews speak of fruit salad in a bowl............I agree, this is fruit salad in a... Read More

    Wine review by jamessulis


  • Anybody whose "best ever" wine is Cakebread, gets my immediate ... ... from California, New York, Oregon or Washington, have a bit of detectable residual sugar that puts them in the semi-dry range.  However, you can find complety dry versions, also.  European versions, mostly from Germany and Alsace, can have any level of sugar.  Ask for guida... Read More

    Forum post in the topic Hello Snooth!


  • Treveri Brut Blanc de Blanc

    Snoothrank:

    No written review

    Wine review by ejb7777


  • I called Domaine Serene (Willamette Valley, Oregon) and canceled our wine club membership today.  They had sent the invoice for the spring shipment of six bottles, and just about 100 dollars was attributed to shipping / handling ($72) and tax ($25).  One hundred bucks to ship six bottles; the total bill was around $550.  The best I could do was ... Read More

    Forum post in the topic Weekday Wines


  • Well V V, that Oregon white looks very nice.  Sorry that Colombard was a bummer EM. Read More

    Forum post in the topic And now for something...


  • We tried one of the Bourgogne Pinot Noir's last night with a steak (for me) ... the Williamette Valley in Oregon.  Perhaps we'll hold onto the other bottle for a bit to see if there is any change.&nbs Read More

    Forum post in the topic Weekday Wines


  • An extemely enjoyable 2010 Eyrie Vineyard (Oregon) Melon de Bourgogne. This grape is widely grown in France, mainly in the Loire Valley where it is also known as Muscadet. In the glass it's an interesting light to medium gold expanding to a clear rim. On the nose is some ripe pear, a hint of lemon pith and a touch of apricot. Some fairly mouth w... Read More

    Forum post in the topic And now for something...


  • Reading all of the comments so far with this post is the main reason I ... ... forward by our Portland, Oregon Sommelier. His name is Robert Volz and he owns a place called "The Pour". His amount of energy and compassion is rewarding to say the leas Read More

    Forum post in the topic A strong desire to learn more...


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