The Willamette Valley is a vast and varied appellation that includes ten nested AVAs | Chehalem Mountains, Dundee Hills, Eola-Amity Hills, Laurelwood District, Lower Long Tom, McMinnville, Ribbon Ridge, Tualatin Hills, Van Duzer Corridor, and Yamhill-Carlton. We are going to highlight each AVA and provide some hopefully fun and useful history along the way. Tualatin Hills AVA | An American Viticultural Area, or AVA, is a specific type of appellation of origin used on wine labels. An AVA is a delimited grape-growing region with specific geographic or climatic features that distinguish it from the surrounding regions and affect how grapes are grown. The Tualatin Hills AVA is roughly 144,000-acres and aligns with the watershed of the Tualatin River and is part of the Tualatin Valley. It is 15-miles in size and is tucked into the furthest north-western corner of the Willamette Valley. The Tualaitn Hills AVA is home to the first commercial vineyard in Oregon and has an extensively long agricultural history. This AVA offers the largest concentration in Oregon of Laurelwood soil, a windblown volcanic soil mixed with basalt known as loess, that was deposited by the Missoula Floods roughly 12,000 years ago. At an elevation range between 200 and 1,000 feet this area benefits from the rain shadow of the coast range with slightly lower rainfall, cooler temperatures in spring-time and more temperate and dryer conditions during the critical fall harvest period. It is sheltered to the west by some of the highest peaks of the coast range mountains and is shielded to the south by the large mass of the Chehalem Mountains.
Tualatin Hills AVA was established in 2020 and boasts nearly 55 wineries + vineyards in its young acquiry. The most common grape varieties planted in this AVA are Pinot Noir, Pinot Gris, Chardonnay and one of our favorites… Gewürztraminer.
Cheers to Tualatin Hills AVA!
Tualatin Hills | AVA