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 & Pro Wine Judge. Charmed by the Willamette Valley's earthy, elegant Pinot Noirs with a true zeal for Oregon Chardonnay, Riesling & Sparkling Wine.

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Popular wines made in Oregon under $20

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Varietals Produced in Oregon View all

  • Chardonnay

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

  • 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...

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

  • Stone Wolf Vineyards

    Stone Wolf has been producing wines of quality and flair since 1998. At what is now a memorable p...

  • Girardet Wine Cellars & Vineyard

    Philippe Girardet was born and raised in Switzerland near the headwaters of the Rhone, a French-s...

  • Territorial Vineyards

    Locally owned, locally grown, locally vinified and locally rockin,' Territorial wines are certifi...

  • Chateau Bianca

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

  • Carabella Vineyard

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

  • Milbrandt Vineyards

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

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Oregon on Snooth

  • Willamette Valley Vineyards Estate Pinot Noir 2014

    Snoothrank:

    Beautifully rich and floral aromas of violet and warm baking spice, ripe cherry and elegant minerality on the nose. This holds up beautifully in the palate with a round and full mouth full of tart cherry, raspberry and red currant, fresh acidity in perfect balance with tannic structure, and delicate salinity drying out the palate at just the rig... Read More

    Wine review by Snooth Editorial


  • Elk Cove Pinot Noir Willamette Estate 2010

    Snoothrank:

    Spicy, smooth and fruit forward leaves this small production Pinot Noir worth ... ... lose out. Really great Oregon ge Read More

    Wine review by sbr1105


  • Tonight we dined in the district again, this time at Grillfish prior to a ... ... cheesecake with a glass of Oregon Pinot Noir from Erath Vineyards.  Sandra suggested that we switch our dessert drinks as the Patron was a better pairing to the cheesecake and I agreed.  That Pinot was good though, as was the Sancerre. &nbs Read More

    Forum post in the topic Weekday Wines


  • What a cool event. Wasn't so long ago both Greg's would be game for such an event. Read More

    Forum post in the topic Oregon Pinot - Kelley Fox Wines


  • DM, thanks for the info!  We get out to Oregon a lot more often than NYC. We'll be heading to the Northwest again in July which I'm hoping is a fairly quiet time for winemakers and should be easier to schedule tastings. Read More

    Forum post in the topic Oregon Pinot - Kelley Fox Wines


  • Vino, I've been extolling Soter on these boards this whole decade. Good ... ... and biophysics from Oregon State University, Kelley decided to pursue a career in winemaking before finishing her doctorate in biochemistry. Learning directly from Oregon winemakers (including the legendary David Lett of Eyrie Vineyards), she learned that observat... Read More

    Forum post in the topic Oregon Pinot - Kelley Fox Wines


  • Those vines are further along than the vines we saw in Oregon a few weeks ago.   Read More

    Forum post in the topic What Day Is It? (Besides hump...


  • These are definitely some of the best wines we own - meaning our collection of ... ... do love those high-end Oregon Pinot Noirs from Willamette Valley though. Read More

    Forum post in the topic What have you bought lately?


  • Cameron out of Oregon is a great source for dry farmed, sustainable wines.cameronwines.com Read More

    Forum post in the topic Hello Snooth!


  • Ah, my first weekend following that wonderful vacation in Oregon.  So what do we do?  We go out just about every day it seems with all the events Sandra signed us up for.  Yesterday I spent four hours cleaning the ceiling and walls of our dining room (starting back into getting the dining room painted after doing the doors and windows earlier in... Read More

    Forum post in the topic Weekend Wines


  • 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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