Pinot Noir from the Best Oregon Wineries

Unwind During Cellar Season at the Best Oregon Wineries

Select Registry - November 22, 2022

Discover the Best Wines in Oregon

A couple enjoying wine a the best Oregon Wineries

This winter offers a surprisingly great opportunity to sip and swirl your way through some of the top-rated wine regions in the US. One of our favorites involves the Willamette Valley, where you’ll find the best Oregon wineries, not to mention an exquisite Select Registry Bed and Breakfast.

Though wine grapes are grown all over the state, Oregon’s Willamette Valley is the premiere wine-growing region and home to the top Oregon wineries. These Oregon wineries are renowned worldwide for producing some of the finest Pinot Noir wines. In fact, in 2016, it was named the wine-growing region of the year by Wine Enthusiast. 

Since then, the wines have just gotten better. Much like Cabernet Season at the top Napa Valley wineries, winter in the Willamette Valley is known as Cellar Season; the perfect time of year to relax, unwind and appreciate the fantastic wine produced by the top Oregon wineries. 

Oregon’s Willamette Valley extends from the Portland area in the north to Eugene in the south. There are more than 500 Oregon wineries (700+ vineyards) in this narrow stretch of the state, and nearly 70% of the wine grapes grown here are of the Pinot Noir variety. Visiting the Willamette Valley is truly a sensational opportunity to visit.

While you’re sipping and swirling your way through the top Oregon wineries, don’t miss your chance to explore the rest of wine country, too. As with most wine-growing regions around the country, the Willamette Valley is home to several small towns that offer exquisite dining, plenty of shopping, and a wide variety of artistic and cultural attractions. 

With far fewer crowds in town this winter, Cellar Season offers an exceptional time to explore this wine-lovers destination. To elevate your stay and take it to the next level, partner with Select Registry to stay at one of the top-rated Willamette Valley Bed and Breakfasts, which offers the best this region has to offer. 

Wine tasting at the Best Oregon Wineries

10 of the Best Oregon Wineries

Like all wine regions, the growing conditions throughout the Willamette Valley are unique, which is what lends such diversity to the many Oregon wineries you’ll find here. The Willamette Valley is only a narrow 100-mile stretch of space in the vast state of Oregon, but it’s still home to nine distinct American Viticultural Areas (AVAs). 

Pinot Noir is a cool-climate-loving varietal that thrives perfectly here in this narrow valley, which is buffered by mountain ranges on both sides and just a short drive from the stunning beaches of Oregon’s Coast. Accordingly, the valley’s vineyards are afforded the perfect protection from the cold coastal breezes and the excessive rain and heat – perfect for the relatively finicky Pinot Noir grape.

Pinot Noir isn’t the only great wine you’ll find in Oregon, though. There’s a huge variety of wine grapes grown here and an increasing number of Oregon wineries dedicated to sustainable growing techniques. It’s truly a fascinating wine region worthy of exploring. 

Below, we’ve listed 10 of the best Oregon wineries worth visiting this winter. 

  1. There are plenty of excellent Oregon wineries to visit throughout the Willamette Valley, but none that compare to the sensational wine, views, and hospitality you’ll experience at our Select Registry partner, Youngberg Hill. Like many leading Oregon wineries, they utilize the latest organic and biodynamic farming technology to produce a truly exceptional range of wines. 
  2. Another great stop to make in the Willamette Valley is Brooks Wine, which is considered one of the best Oregon Wineries and ranked one of the top 100 wineries in the world in 2019. They are known for their incredible Rieslings and Pinot Noirs.
  3. Pinot Noir fans shouldn’t miss a stop at Alloro Vineyard, one of the top-rated Oregon wineries dedicated to producing 100% estate-grown Pinot Noir. Not only are their wines delicious, but they use only sustainable, organic, and LIVE-certified farming practices to grow their grapes. 
  4. Enjoy the high ceilings, jaw-dropping views, warm wood furnishings, and a wood-burning fireplace at Penner-Ash Wine Cellars. Their wines are just as uncompromising as the views.
  5. For an authentic taste of the Willamette Valley, head to Adelsheim Vineyard. They were one of the first Oregon wineries to be established in the area. They continue to produce a sensational array of small-batch wines that perfectly reflect the complex, sensitive beauty of Willamette Valley wines. 
  6. If you’re interested in tasting wines produced using biodynamic practices, don’t miss a visit to Bergström Wines. They are well-regarded as one of the best Oregon wineries, too. 
  7. If you want a break from Pinot Noir or appreciate a diverse array of wine-tasting experiences, head to Argyle Winery, which is well-known for its sparkling wines. They are also consistently rated by Wine Spectator as a producer of the Top 100 Wines of the World, an accolade rare for Oregon wineries. 
  8. Another gem in the sparkling wine world of Oregon is ROCO winery
  9. Another excellent place to enjoy the range of wines in the Willamette Valley is Lavinea Winery. This winery is led by female winemaker Isabelle Meunier, who crafts delicious single-vineyard wines from Chardonnay to Pinot Noir.
  10. Don’t miss a trip to Domaine Drouhin, a name found among many lists of the best Oregon Wineries – and for a good reason. They have three different labels (Joseph Drouhin, Domaine Drouhin, RoseRock) from three other sites, one of which is Burgundy, France, all from the same female winemaker.
Gorgeous vineyard views from one of the best Oregon Wineries

Things to do in Willamette Valley

The weather in Oregon’s Willamette Valley is pretty mild all year round, so there’s far more to do here than just wine tasting. Though wine-tasting at premier Oregon wineries often features prominently in getaways to this area, there are plenty more things to do in Willamette Valley, even in winter. 

Below, we’ve compiled some of our favorite things to do in Willamette Valley, including exploring the charming towns and their many attractions. 

  1. Don’t miss the chance to walk up and down 3rd street in downtown McMinnville, one of the most popular towns in Oregon Wine Country. Exploring McMinnville is one of the most popular things to do in the Willamette Valley. With its wonderful shops, art galleries, restaurants, tasting rooms, and more, it’s easy to see why! 
  2. Wine tasting isn’t the only game in town. Oregon is a huge reputation for spectacular craft breweries, too, and it’s not just limited to Portland. Don’t miss some of the top-rated Oregon Breweries in the Willamette Valley. 
  3. How about a relaxing soak in a hot spring? We can’t think of a better way to spend a chilly winter afternoon. No wonder a visit to places like the Terwilliger Hot Springs is one of the top things to do in the Willamette Valley! 
  4. Aviation enthusiasts, don’t miss the chance to see the famed Spruce Goose in person while otherwise enjoying the Evergreen Aviation & Space Museum.
  5. Like wine-growing regions around the country, high-quality food is a huge focus in the Willamette Valley, also an agriculturally rich area. Don’t miss your chance to dine at some of the top-rated Willamette Valley restaurants. Eating at these farm-to-table establishments is one of the best things to do in the Willamette Valley. 

Above all else, when you visit these fantastic Oregon wineries in the Willamette Valley, leave yourself plenty of time to relax and unwind at our Select Registry member and leading Willamette Valley Bed and Breakfast. Arguably, one of the best things about visiting any wine region, aside from tasting the great wine and food, is giving yourself time to enjoy a refreshing getaway – and no one does this better than Select Registry Inns. 

If you’re ready to experience some of the best wine in the country, head to these top-rated Oregon Wineries and experience the best of the Willamette Valley this Cellar Season. Book your trip to one of our Oregon Bed and Breakfasts today! 

Best Willamette Valley Bed and Breakfast

Youngberg Hill

Youngberg Hill is set on a 50-acre hilltop surrounded by exquisite vineyards and views. We are one of Wine Spectator’s favorite locations. Our inn has an amazing 30-year-old vineyard that is farmed organically and is known for producing award-winning wines. Our bed & breakfast offers the perfect retreat for your Oregon wine country getaway. The inn features nine lovely guest rooms with luxuriously appointed amenities and stunning views. In addition to our own vineyard and tasting room, we are also conveniently located to over 100 different wineries and tasting rooms in the Willamette Valley.

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