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Willamette Valley Vineyards

Willamette Valley Vineyards
 
January 6, 2022 | Willamette Valley Vineyards

Wishing You A Happy New Year

 

 2021 | Year In Review

 

We know you have a lot of great choices when it comes to selecting wines, so we want to thank you for your support of Willamette Valley Vineyards. Your support enables us to continue our mission in telling the Oregon story through wine, while using sustainable growing and winemaking practices. We look forward to sharing new wines, locations and experiences with you in 2022 as we open our Domaine Willamette sparkling wine facility in the Dundee Hills and Tasting Room & Restaurants in Lake Oswego, on the Vancouver Waterfront and in Happy Valley. Wishing you and yours health and happiness in 2022.

 


 

Founder of Willamette Valley Vineyards, Jim Bernau

March | Executive of the Year


Our Founder and CEO Jim Bernau is recognized as Portland Business Journal's 2021 Executive of the Year for finding innovative ways to lead the winery and care for each other, our community and environment.

Women take part in a celebration paying tribute to women in the wine industry

March | Willamette's Women in Wine


In honor of International Women's Day on March 8th we celebrate our Willamette women in wine. In an industry that is still traditionally male dominated, we are honored to have 56% of our staff and 63% of our leadership team made up of passionate women dedicated to shaping the Oregon wine industry. 


 

Image of a bud breaking in the Estate Vineyard

April | Bud Break in Estate Vineyard


Leading up to the appearance of first buds on the vines, our vineyard team prunes nearly 500 acres of vineyards, the most acres in our company's history. Meanwhile, planning begins at Jory Claim, our new estate vineyard in the Salem Hills, ready to be planted in 2022.

 

An image of an autonomous robot designed to shine UV-S light to combat powdery mildew from damaging wine grapes.

May | UV-C Robot Deployed


Using an autonomous robot to apply a special band of ultraviolet light treatment to the vines, Willamette is the first farmer to combat powdery mildew from damaging wine grapes by replacing the use of organic sulfur with sustainable UV-C light. We see this as a remarkable opportunity for our industry to grow high-quality wine grapes and do it in a very natural, sustainable way.

 

An image of a cluster of grapes during the 2021 record breaking heat wave.

June | Northwest Heat Wave


Record-breaking high temperatures hit the Northwest, but our new berries on the vine are still small and hard — not plump and delicate like they are later in the growing season. The vines and grape clusters make it through with no stress or damage.

 

An image of Winery Owners walking through the Estate Vineyard

July | Preferred Stock Offering Provides Ownership Opportunity & Launches Expansion


We invite wine enthusiasts to become Owners through our Preferred Stock Offering and be part of Oregon wine history as we open Domaine Willamette in the Dundee Hills and four Tasting Room & Restaurants in the next two years. Locations include Lake Oswego, Vancouver Waterfront, Happy Valley and Bend.

Image of Bravo's Top Chef Finale at the Estate Vineyard

July | Bravo's Top Chef Finale Airs


Bravo's Top Chef wraps up Season 18 with a finale filmed at our Estate in the Salem Hills, where the cast and crew toast the conclusion with glasses of our 2017 Bernau Estate Traditionnelle Champenoise Brut (Photo by David Moir/Bravo).

Image of a Willamette Valley Vineyard

July | EU Grants Willamette Valley Geographic Protection


The Willamette Valley is given Protected Geographical Indication status and protection by the European Union, making it the second American wine producing region to attain PGI status. This status ensures the legal protection of Willamette Valley wines from counterfeit or imitation products and attaches a cache for EU retailers and consumers, who recognize it as a stamp of quality and assurance of provenance.

 


 

Image of Greg Urmini our new Director of Winemaking & Vineyards

August | Greg Urmini Joins Winemaking Team


Just in time for the start of harvest, Greg Urmini is named our new Director of Winemaking & Vineyards. In this new position, Greg is responsible for the overall management of winemaking and vineyards, including 500 acres of sustainably-farmed, estate-grown vineyards in the Willamette Valley and 35 acres in the Walla Walla Valley and The Rocks District of Milton-Freewater AVAs.

Urmini will also oversee the construction of a new, state-of-the art winery on 40 acres in the Dundee Hills on property Willamette purchased four years ago for this purpose. It is close to the new boutique, sparkling winery called Domaine Willamette at the Bernau Estate Vineyard.

 

A photo of a bin of grapes during the 2021 Harvest

September | Harvest Starts

Though we experienced a dry winter and warm summer, cooler temperatures come at the perfect moment to give our fruit longer hang time on the vine and allow for more flavor, aroma, color and tannin development. The cooler nights also help retain natural acidities in the grapes. With slightly below-average yields and no disease pressure this season, we have the makings of a very high-quality vintage.

Salem Health ICU and Emergency Department staff members receiving complimentary meals from Winery Chef DJ MacIntyre and his team

September | Meals for Frontline Workers

Salem Health ICU and Emergency Department staff members receive complimentary meals from Winery Chef DJ MacIntyre and his team in an effort to encourage those on the frontlines during the Covid-19 Delta variant surge.


 

A drone photo of the Willamette Valley Vineyards Estate Tasting Room

October | Top Philanthropic Company


The Portland Business Journal ranks our winery as one of the top 10 philanthropic companies of our size for 2020. Our charity partners include Self Enhancement Inc., Oregon State University Foundation and Oregon Environmental Council.

Chef DJ MacIntyre

October | Best Winery and Chef


Willamette Valley Vineyards and Chef DJ MacIntyre are named through the Statesman Journal's Best of Mid-Valley program as Best Winery and Best Chef for 2021.


 

Bravo's Top Chef Season 14 winner Brooke Williamson

November | Brooke Williamson Cooking Class


Brooke Williamson, a celebrated chef who won Bravo's Top Chef Season 14 and was a guest judge on Top Chef Season 18's finale filmed at the Estate, joins our Wine Club Members for a private virtual cooking class.
 

 

A zoomed up image of the brand new Clonal Blending System located at the Estate Vineyard

December | Blending Experience Opens


We debut our Pinot Noir Clonal Blending Experience, giving users the controls to be a winemaker, crafting and tasting custom blends with guidance from a Winery Ambassador. This unique system was invented by Research & Development Manager David Markel for Roth Barrel Room at the Estate.
 

Image of the Gold Coin currently being found throughout the Northwest and in states across the country in bottles purchased directly from us, local grocers, wine shops and restaurants.

 

December | Charitable Adventure to Find Golden Coins


Golden Coins are being found throughout the Northwest and in states across the country in bottles purchased directly from us, local grocers, wine shops and restaurants. Lucky winners of our 500 Golden Coins receive a $50 donation to their local food banks, a credit of $100 toward a wine experience at the Estate and entry into a drawing for a chance to win an Oregon wine country getaway for two.

 
Time Posted: Jan 6, 2022 at 9:47 AM Permalink to Wishing You A Happy New Year Permalink
Founded in 1983 by Oregon native Jim Bernau with the dream of creating world-class Pinot Noir,
Willamette Valley Vineyards has grown from a bold idea into one of the region’s leading wineries, earning the title “One of America’s Great Pinot Noir Producers” from Wine Enthusiast Magazine

 

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