Nestled in the northern part of the Yamhill-Carlton AVA, our 22-acre vineyard boasts some of the oldest marine soils in the Willamette Valley. Protected from the elements by the Coast Range mountains, this unique terroir yields wines with a flavor profile unlike anywhere else in the world.
Our vineyard story began in 1984 when we started planting our first vines. Today, with an average vine age of 30 years, we pride ourselves on our longstanding commitment to sustainable and dry farming practices. Our sedimentary rock-based Peavine and Willakenzie soil deposits atop ancient sea beds offer excellent drainage for our mature root systems. We employ Vertical Shoot Position (VSP) trellising throughout the vineyard, which maximizes sun exposure and helps ensure even ripening.
Our plantings include Pinot Noir, Dijon Chardonnay, Müller-Thurgau, Pinot Gris, Carmine, Pinot Meunier, and Grüner Veltliner. Our Pinot Noir clones consist of Pommard, Dijon 114, 115, 117, 667, 777, Coury, Wädenswil, and the Gamay Beaujolais Upright clone. But it's not just about the varieties we grow—it's how we grow them.
We take a holistic approach to sustainable winegrowing, recognizing that the health of our vineyard ecosystem is vital to the quality of our wines. That's why we use natural pest and disease control methods, minimize the use of synthetic fertilizers and herbicides, and practice dry farming. A healthy vineyard is biodiverse, so we maintain cover crops between our rows and encourage beneficial insects and wildlife to make their homes here.
Blocks of Note
Rebecca's Reserve Pinot Noir
In addition to our sustainability commitment, we strive to innovate and experiment with our vineyard practices. Take, for example, our Rebecca's Reserve Pinot Noir. In the early 1980s, we planted our vines on a 5' x 10' spacing, the standard at the time. But in the late 1980s, we began questioning whether this spacing was optimal for our site. Inspired by Burgundian vineyards, planted much more densely, we hypothesized that a higher vine density would result in smaller clusters and more intense flavors. So we modified our planting strategy to include four rows with 4' x 4' spacing and a ten-foot break for the tractor between rows. The results were extraordinary, and today Rebecca's Reserve Pinot Noir is renowned for its unique flavor profile.
Heritage Pinot Noir
Our Heritage block is home to some of our finest Pinot Noir and holds a special place in our family's heart as our oldest and original Pinot Noir, planted in 1984. To maintain and improve its quality, we increased vine density in 1999 by adding a row of Pinot Noir every other row, increasing density from 870 vines/acre to 1300 vines/acre. This change helped to increase the stress on the older vines, leading to more balanced growth and ripening. As a result, the wines from this block are structured, densely layered, and possess excellent cellaring potential, truly showcasing the best of our vineyard's unique terroir.
Cardiac Hill Pinot Noir
The Cardiac Hill Block is a true gem in our vineyard and one that we are particularly proud of. This block is home to just over one acre of high-quality Pinot Noir vines that grow on a steep hillside with a thin humus layer. The ribbons of red and gold clay that cut through this terrain make Cardiac Hill unique, providing a micro-terroir that imparts a distinctive character to the fruit. The tough soils and the steep hillside stress the vines, delaying their development and making it a decade before the plants could produce enough crop to make a single block designate. But the wait was worth it, as the resulting wine showcases the complexity and depth that can only come from such a unique and challenging terroir. We planted the Dijon 115 and Pommard clones here, with more conventional 10 x 4 spacing. Still, the distinctive soil composition provides enough vine stress for balanced growth and development of this exceptional fruit.
Chardonnay Clonal Selection
Our Chardonnays showcase our commitment to using the best clones for our site. In the 1990s, we transformed our Chardonnay production, turning to the Dijon clones from Burgundy after struggling to ripen the earlier-planted 108 and Draper clones from California. The difference was striking - the Dijon clone Chardonnay ripened one month earlier than the 108 block, resulting in fruit with more balance and developed flavors. Since then, we have been using 100% Dijon clones, which have enabled us to produce exceptional Chardonnays that reflect our unique terroir consistently.