Explore the Old Vines of Oregon Wine
One-Day, Weekend Trail
Tualatin Valley has been an important part of the history of Oregon. Some of the Pinot Noir vines remain among the oldest in the Willamette Valley, including one vineyard that was one of the first—if not the first—Pinot Noir planted in the Tualatin Valley. Tour the oldest vineyards in the valley, some dating back nearly 50 years ago.
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First visit Ponzi Vineyards and Winery. Dick and Nancy Ponzi are regarded as pioneers in the Oregon wine industry. More than 40 years ago, the Ponzi family planted some of the earliest vines found in the Willamette Valley. Today, the second generation of the family runs the winery and crafts internationally acclaimed limited-production wines. (Open Wednesday-Sunday, 11 a.m. to 5 p.m.)
Planted in 1973, the 7.25 acres of vineyards at Ruby Vineyard and Winery produces premium Pinot Noir from some of the oldest own-rooted vines in Oregon. Enjoy the picturesque views of Mt. Hood at Ruby’s new tasting room and taste Pinot Noir from Old Vines, as well as Chardonnay and Rose of Pinot Gris. (Open Friday-Monday, 11 a.m. to 4:30 p.m.)
Continue on to Elk Cove Vineyards in Gaston. Elk Cove first planted Pinot Noir vines in 1974. Today, Elk Cove has six vineyards and grows several different varietals. The second generation now has taken the reins at this pioneering winery. (Open daily, 10 a.n. to 5 p.m.)
Stop for a bite at Urban Decanter in Forest Grove. This wine shop offers a diverse selection of cheese plates, charcuterie, appetizers, panini and more. (Open Tuesday-Saturday at 11 a.m. for lunch; open evenings Monday-Saturday)
David Hill Vineyard Winery boasts some of the the oldest vines in the Willamette Valley. Oregon wine pioneer Charles Coury arrived in 1965 and planted Pinot Noir grapes with root stock from Alsace and Burgundy, and cultivated these Pinot Noir clones on the property in Forest Grove. He also planted an assortment of white wines, such as Gewürztraminer, Pinot Blanc and Riesling, which are still on the property today. While Coury no longer owns the property, his legacy and contributions to Oregon wine remain. (Open daily, 11 a.m. to 5 p.m.)
Tualatin Estate Vineyard, established in 1973, is another of the region’s oldest and most respected vineyard sites in Oregon’s Willamette Valley. Wine grapes from this 145-acre vineyard have produced world-renowned wines for more than 40 years. Today, the site is owned by Oregon’s largest winemaker, Willamette Valley Vineyards, which still produces wines from this historic vineyard. (Open Saturday-Sunday, 12-5 p.m.)
After a day of wine tasting enjoy dinner at the Greater Portland region’s most respected and highly acclaimed Japanese restaurant, Syun Izakaya. Enjoy a large variety of sushi and sashimi, traditional Japanese hot dishes and noodles and more. (Open nightly for dinner)
Just minutes from nearby Portland, the Vineyard and Valley Scenic Tour Route showcases this special commingling of attractions along its 60-mile drive through the serene Oregon countryside.
From being home to some of Oregon's pioneering vintners, some of the oldest vines in the Willamette Valley can be found here.