Five Things You May Not Know About Willamette Valley Vineyards

by Gayle Gilham on June 4, 2018

in Featured Member

Willamette Valley Vineyards

The Willamette Valley is the heart of Oregon wines, thus it’s fitting to feature one of the region’s leading wineries. Did you know…

  1. Willamette Valley Vineyards (WVV) was founded by Jim Bernau in 1983, following purchase of the estate site near Turner, Oregon. Jim cleared away the old pioneer plum orchard hidden in Scotch broom and blackberry vines and proceeded to plant Pinot Noir, Chardonnay and Pinot Gris. In the beginning he hand watered the vines with seventeen lengths of 75′ garden hose.
  2. After attending numerous classes at UC Davis, and seminars from here to France, Jim’s sharpened viticultural skills prepared him to build his dream. In 1989 he constructed a world class winery, making cool-climate varietals, especially Pinot Noir, to be served and sold in the best restaurants and bottle shops in the world.
  3. Jim’s personal gift to Oregon State University established the nation’s first professorship in fermentation science in 1995.
  4. WVV has collaboratively grown its estate vineyards through partnerships like the merger with Oregon wine industry pioneer, Bill Fuller of Tualatin Vineyards (established in 1973), the O’Briens of Elton Vineyard (established in 1983) and Loeza Vineyard (planted in 2015). The winery now sources all of its barrel-aged Pinot Noir from its estate-grown vineyards and meticulously farms nearly 500 acres in the valley.
  5. Today, Jim’s vision of organizing the support of wine enthusiasts to grow world-class wines through shared ownership has resulted in more than 10,000 owners. The winery’s Common (WVVI) and Preferred (WVVIP) are traded on the NASDAQ. WWV practices environmentally sustainable farming and were part of the founding of the Low Input Viticulture and Enology Program (LIVE).

Cascade is proud to feature Willamette Valley Vineyards, with the approach of growing by hand the highest quality fruit using careful canopy management and yield balance.

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