There are so many reasons to love Oregon’s Willamette Valley, but this region is probably best known for it’s wineries and vineyards. Home to more than 500 wineries, Willamette Valley is recognized as one of the finest Pinot noir producing areas in the world. Other cool-climate varieties such as Pinot gris, Pinot blanc, Chardonnay, Riesling and Gewürztraminer are equally at home in the valley.
Just last month, Wine Enthusiast Magazine, an esteemed, internationally-recognized wine publication for oenophiles, announced Oregon’s Willamette Valley as its 2016 Wine Region of the Year for its annual Wine Star Awards. The Wine Star Awards are viewed as some of the most influential in the wine industry. Other 2016 nominees for Wine Region of the Year included Champagne, France; Crete, Greece; Sonoma County, California and Provence, France.
Just over fifty years ago, David Lett, founder of The Eyrie Vineyards, planted the Willamette Valley’s first Pinot noir. Others soon joined the quest, giving rise to an entire wine industry known for its world-class Pinot noir and inviting hospitality.
The Willamette Valley finds itself in good international company in the Region of the Year category with previous years’ recipients including Lodi, New York State, Paso Robles, Ribera del Duero, Colchagua Valley, Mendoza, Alexander Valley, Rioja, and the Rhône Valley.
The magazine will officially award the region at the Wine Star Awards gala on Jan. 30 in Miami, FL. The region was also be featured in Wine Enthusiast’s December 2016 issue.
Visit the wineries in the Tualatin Valley and see why the Willamette Valley was named the Wine Region of the Year! While you’re here, be sure to check out these new tasting rooms.
New Wine Tasting Rooms
Blizzard Wines (taasting room opening spring 2017): Blizzard Wines is constructing a tasting room at its estate vineyard. Project is expected to be completed in in early 2017. blizzardwines.com
Lachini Vineyards (tasting room opened summer 2016): Lachini Vineyards has been producing premium Pinot Noir from its vineyards in Newberg, Oregon, for more than a decade. This summer, Lachini opened a tasting room at its wine production facility in the Tualatin Valley, in the city of Tualatin, where wine lovers can taste its collection of red and white wines. lachinivineyards.com
In March 2016, Ponzi’s Historic Estate, the original home of Ponzi Vineyards, became home to Hamacher Wines, an artisan wine producer of Pinot Noir and Chardonnay. Visitors to the winery and tasting room can taste (and purchase) Hamacher wines alongside wines from Ponzi Vineyards at the historic estate. hamacherwines.com
Story source: tualatinvalley.org