The best up and coming Oregon region is not Willamette Valley it’s Umpqua.
The Umpqua Valley of Oregon has 3 separate AVA’s Elkton, Red Hill and Umpqua. It’s approximately 25 miles due east of the Pacific Ocean and extends a further 20 miles east.
“The Hundred Valleys of the Umpqua” because it is made up of a series of interconnecting small mountain ranges and valleys. Umpqua Valley is a result of the collision of three mountain ranges.
Oregon’s AVA’s are becoming increasingly more popular. One of Oregon’s more diverse climates, the Umpqua Valley can successfully grow both cool and warm varieties. It’s comprised of three distinct climatic sub-zones which makes it very interesting because it’s not only Pinot Noir and Pinot Gris that call attention it’s Merlot, Syrah, Tempranillo and Pinot Noir. The soil is a mix of metamorphic, sedimentary and volcanic rock, though more than 150 soil types. What’s interesting is the Diurnal temperature variations can vary by as much as 25 degrees F. The result is a complex jigsaw of meso climates, aspects and soil mix that create a wide-ranging assortment of growing environments.
Just to know, most of the Pinot Noir grapes produced in the Umpqua Valley are slated for sale as bulk fruit to wine producers in California or Oregon’s Willamette Valley. You are drinking it already! It’s just plain good stuff. In fact, Copper Cane, with it’s top-selling Elouan, Pinot Noir a Napa Valley, California, winery sells more Pinot Noir made from Oregon grapes than anyone else, and often at a lower price.
Yep, sounds unfair. That’s why you scratch your head and say How much Pinot Noir can California produce! Copper Cane's owner, Joe Wagner and Jim Blumling their VP of Operations, are meeting with Oregon Liquor Control to try to resolve this imbalance. That’s another story…
Umpqua Valley Pinot Noir would lend itself gamely to the production of rosé. No doubt…A Pinot Noir-based rosé could easily emerge as the region’s signature wine.
As times moves on The Umpqua Valley appellation continues to evolve as new winemakers discover the area to make great wine.
The justifiably popular wineries like Abacela, Spangler, Girardet, Reustle-Prayer Rock, Henry Estate and Brandborg (to name only a few) of Umpqua are being joined by a new group of wineries. Top scores and reviews too! Seek them out or better yet; take a trip and make a visit.
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