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A History of Grapes and Wine in Oregon

A History of Grapes and Wine in Oregon

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    Oregon 150 Lake Oregon 150 Lake Presentation Transcript

    • A History of Grapes and Wine Oregon 150 Symposium, February 18, 2009 Umpqua Community College Roseburg, Oregon Chris Lake Director The Southern Oregon Wine Institute at Umpqua Community College
    • History of US Winemaking
      • Putting the Oregon Experience in Context
      • Starting with the Original Colonists
      • Heading West
      • The Great Experiment
      • The Current Situation
    • Wine Producing Regions of USA
    • Thomas Pinney’s A History of Wine in America
    • Pinney’s Eras in the History of US Winemaking
      • Three Major Eras
        • “Getting It Wrong” 1607-1807
        • “Compromise” 1807-1960
        • “Getting It Right” 1960-Present
    • Pinney’s Eras in the History of US Winemaking
      • Three Major Classes of Grapes
        • Vitis vinifera L. - the classic winegrape
        • “ natives”- Hybrids of the wild, American species: V. lubrscana, V. cordifolia, V. aestivalis, ect…
        • “ French-American Hybrids” – More advanced hybrids between V. vinifera and the wild American species
    • Heading West
      • Horticulture in the Northwest begins at Hudson’s Bay Company, Fort Vancouver on Columbia River
      • Grapes raised from seed brought from England in 1824
      • Likely these were V. vinfera
    • Heading West
      • Settlement of the Oregon Territory – 1840’s
      • Seth Lewelling of Milwaukie, OR planted Isabella (native) 1847
      • William Meek of Willamette, OR won award for Isabella white wine in 1859 California State Fair
    • Heading West
      • 1860’s – A.R. Shipley of Oswego imports some vinifera into the Willamette.
      • 1869 Oregon State Fair lists prizes for “foreign” and “American” grapes
      • 1900 fair lists only “American” varieties
    • Heading West – Southern Oregon
      • 1860’s – Peter Britt establishes the Valley View Vineyards – made wine for local market and some for Portland
      • 1880’s – the Van Pessl brothers planted vinifera in the Melrose area
      • The Doerner family opened a winery in 1890’s that operated until 1965, in the Melrose area
    • The Doerner Winery
    • Adolf Doerner, c. 1940
    • The Great Experiment
      • “Prohibition”
        • Generally considered
            • January 17, 1920 – December 5, 1933
        • Volstead Act, 18 th Amendment
        • Repeal, 21 st Amendment
      • Oregon “Jumped the Gun”
        • 1914 Votes to Go Dry in Anticipation of the Volstead Act of 1919
    •  
    • Light at the End of the Tunnel
      • 1933 – The first post- Prohibition license is granted to Louis Herbolt
      • The Doerner winery resumes production in 1934
      • No Significant Activity until 1960
      • 1960 – Richard Sommer establishes the Hilcrest Vineyards winery, bonded winery #44, in Melrose area
    • Richard Sommer, in the Hilcrest Vineyard, Roseburg, OR, c. 1965
    • Richard Sommer, in the vineyard
    • The Modern Era
      • 1965 – David Lett plants Pinot Noir ( V. vinifera ) and others in the Willamette
      • 1968 – Pinot Noir from Hillcrest becomes available in Oregon
      • 1970 – Five bonded wineries and 35 vineyard acres
    • The Modern Era
      • 1979 – David Lett of The Eyrie Vineyards places in the top ten of the Gault-Millau French Wine Olympiades with his 1975 Pinot Noir
      • 1987- The Drouhin Family, a respected wine family from France buys 100 acres in the North Willamette
      • Oregon Wine is now respected on the World’s Wine Stage
    • Modern Wine Producing Regions of Oregon
    • The Current Situation
      • According to Pinney, the Three Major Eras in US winemaking
        • “ Getting It Wrong” 1607-1807
        • “ Compromise” 1807-1960
        • “ Getting It Right” 1960-Present
      • Future Growth in the Oregon Wine Industry looks Promising