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Shoulderchoke
UNO Fan
Swamps of Lafourche
Member since Aug 2008
7408 posts

Willamette Valley
Wife and I would like to go and spend 3/4 days there. Any recommendations on towns to stay in or wine tours to take? Thinking of going in late August or early September.


VABuckeye
Ohio State Fan
Oak Hill, VA
Member since Dec 2007
23483 posts

re: Willamette Valley
Please post a review after you return. It’s high on my list. Love Pinot Noir.


Shoulderchoke
UNO Fan
Swamps of Lafourche
Member since Aug 2008
7408 posts

re: Willamette Valley
I definitely will.
My love for Pinot Noir is why I’m going. We did Napa a few years ago and it was nice. Had lunch on the wine train. Cool experience.


tigeralum06
LSU Fan
Member since Oct 2007
1954 posts

re: Willamette Valley
You can't really go wrong, but I would stay somewhere on the beach. I enjoyed Cannon Beach, but I am told you can't go wrong with any of those beach towns.

David Hill winery is a quaint house with tastings. Outside has a couple of picnic tables which makes for a great picnic spot overlooking the vineyard.

Montinore Estate is a larger establishment with a nice tasting room and great views outside.

Definitely take some time to visit Indian Beach in Ecola State Park. You climb down to a nice beach area.


parrotdr
LSU Fan
Cesspool of Rationalization
Member since Oct 2003
6472 posts

re: Willamette Valley
We went to Oregon last summer and stayed in Willamette Valley for three days. (by the way, it's pronounced to rhyme with "Dammit"!) I love Pinot Noir, my wife loves Pinot Gris. Perfect place to go.

While the Oregon beaches are lovely, they're too far for daily trips to the majority of the wineries.

We stayed in McMinnville which is pretty centrally located in the busiest part of the valley and drove from there each day. The town itself is a bit larger than the other towns throughout the valley but also maintain the quaintness of a small town. Lots of restaurants, bars and tasting rooms for the evenings. We stayed at McMenamin's Hotel Oregon, which is a creepily renovated old hotel (many rooms use a hall bath). Really cool place with rooftop bar, two main floor bars, and a basement bar (see where my priorities lie?).
It also has one of the best aviation museums in the world (Evergreen) where Howard Hughes' Spruce Goose is housed.

Take a wine tour if you want, but we enjoy much more taking our rental car, map, and GPS and just driving around hitting the ones we want. We mainly focused on the areas around McMinnville, Amity, Dundee. Our favorites were Alloro, Domaine Serene, Sokol Blosser, (plus a couple of tiny ones whose names escape me).

Most of our roaming and tasting was done in the Dundee, Yamhill, and Chehalem Mt. AVA's. (Oregon encompasses 18 specific winegrowing regions called American Viticultural Areas (AVAs).

I have lots of other info if you want it. Have a great time!



This post was edited on 4/11 at 12:47 pm


TheWiz
LSU Fan
Third World, LA
Member since Aug 2007
9817 posts

re: Willamette Valley
I've never wine toured Oregon. I have guzzled lots of Domaine Serene and Big Table Farm pinot noir though. Find a way to tour these.


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Aubie Spr96
Auburn Fan
lolwut?
Member since Dec 2009
24606 posts

re: Willamette Valley
I was hoping this was a hop farm tour......


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northshorebamaman
Washington Fan
PNW
Member since Jul 2009
26703 posts

re: Willamette Valley
We stayed in Newburg last summer which is a great gateway to most of the wineries. Quiet little college town with a few decent food and bar options. Keep in mind that outside of a few areas, like the wine country, a lot of the valley is pretty standard farmland. There are a lot of places that feel more like Kansas than the PNW.


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30
bayoubengals88
Wisconsin Fan
LA
Member since Sep 2007
11147 posts

re: Willamette Valley
Anything good near Hood River?


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parrotdr
LSU Fan
Cesspool of Rationalization
Member since Oct 2003
6472 posts

re: Willamette Valley
quote:

Anything good near Hood River?


Absolutely! We stayed there for a few days also (see my Willamette post above). Had a great Airbnb just across the Columbia River from the town of Hood River--we were on a bluff about 300 feet above the river overlooking the town, and 30 miles or so from Mt. Hood. The pic is from our outdoor deck.

In the town you see are many good restaurants and breweries (including Full Sail's main site). The river itself is a hub of watersport activities, including kite-surfing. In between the town of Hood River and Mt. Hood is its own small wine country outside of Willamette Valley.

Plus there's lots of areas for hiking, and we even saw skiiers still going in late June on Mt. Hood.

We stayed here on the way to Bend, then we hit Willamette.



Trout Bandit
LSU Fan
Baton Rouge, LA
Member since Dec 2012
7774 posts

re: Willamette Valley
quote:

parrotdr

I'm heading to Oregon on Wednesday and we will be staying in Mcminnville for 2 nights. Please recommend some wineries to go try.


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bayoubengals88
Wisconsin Fan
LA
Member since Sep 2007
11147 posts

re: Willamette Valley
quote:

parrotdr
Awesome response!


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Tygra
LSU Fan
Bee Are
Member since Jan 2008
227 posts

re: Willamette Valley
Archery Summit has one of the only caves there and good wines as well. Enjoyed the visit to J Christopher, a guy who runs the place lived in New Orleans for a while. Decided to go there after having their wine at August. Argyle was a quick stop if you’re looking for something more in town. Domaine Drouhin and Domaine Serene are solid choices as well plus very scenic.
Did a night in Pacific City and stayed at the inn overlooking Pelican Brewery and the haystack rock. We stayed at Allison Inn in Willamette, which is worth a stop for lunch or a bite to eat. Great wine list and cheese selection.


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CoachChappy
LSU Fan
Boudin Capitol of the World
Member since May 2013
21551 posts

re: Willamette Valley
quote:

My love for Pinot Noir is why I’m going

If you love Pinot Noir, you were 1 Valley away from the beat Pinot region in America, the Russian River Valley. If you ever get the chance, go stay in Healdsburg or Windsor and tour the wineries in the area. So much good Pinot
This post was edited on 4/12 at 11:13 am


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BlackenedOut
The Big Sleazy
Member since Feb 2011
5001 posts

re: Willamette Valley
Would reccomend staying in Portland and splitting tours between Willamette and The Columbia River Gorge, where winemakers are growing Rhône and other French varietals with stunning results. Syncline, Domaine Poullion especially.

In Willamette, really enjoyed Lingua Franca, Purple Hands. Kelley Fox wasn’t open on the day we were in that neighborhood but would have loved to check it out.


Jax-Tiger
LSU Fan
Portland, OR
Member since Jan 2005
18060 posts

re: Willamette Valley
My two cents worth, not being a wine enthusiast. If you are in the Gorge, go to Maryhill Winery. The winery itself sits on the cliff overlooking the Columbia River Gorge. Absolutely stunning views of the winery and the river below.

The wineries are not that far from Portland, if you want to stay in Portland and take day trips.

The Evergreen Aviation Museum is very cool. Glenn Odekirk, who co-designed the "Spruce Goose" was my grandfather's cousin. He was allegedly on board with Howard Hughes for the plane's only flight, and was Howard Hughes' right hand man for many years. He also co-designed the H-1 Racer.

ETA: Here is the view from Maryhill. They also host concerts there, so you might want to check the schedule. Watching the sun set in the valley while enjoying a concert would not suck.






This post was edited on 4/12 at 12:52 pm


sol graves
UNO Fan
Memphis
Member since Jun 2006
1723 posts

re: Willamette Valley
Not sure how many days you have there, but have been several times and the better vineyard stops are below.

Soter/Mineral Springs Ranch- beautiful vineyard that grows more than grapes. Bring some extra cash to buy fresh produce.

Ayoub- only hosts small groups. Need appointment. You literally taste in his living room

Alexana- wine is amazing. All wines are getting high scores from all magazines.

Beaux Freres- awesome visit. Excellent wine but they know it. Expect to pay $ here.

Patricia Green- next door to Beaux Freres. Great wine.

Eminent Domaine- beautiful picturesque views. Only way to get here is up a windy road. Don’t go if you get car sick. Wine is excellent.

Domaine Serene- they call it a country club and it is. Very proud of their wines and charge for it. Wine is great. Worth the $. However can find other wineries with excellent wine for less.

These are not bad if you have time
Anne Amie
Stoller
Penner-Ashe
Domaine Drouhin

Not impressed with
Eyrie
Carlton Winemakers Studio
Erath
Winters Hill


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dirtsandwich
Alabama Fan
AL
Member since May 2016
1467 posts

re: Willamette Valley
I used Amanda with Oregon Posh as a driver/guide. Great experience.

Link to her website: LINK


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