Ribbon Ridge Willamette Valley,Oregon
. . .
The Ribbon Ridge AVA is one of the oldest and most coveted American Viticulture Areas in the Willamette Valley. It's approximately a quarter mile wide and three and half miles long, rising like an island above the Chehalem Valley floor. Shielded and protected by surrounding landmasses, this "island" eludes the extreme weather experienced by many other agriculture microclimates in the northern Willamette Valley. The soils of Ribbon Ridge are fine and deep, derived from marine sedimentary parent materials dated forty to fifty million years ago. The soils possess good water-holding capability but are not excessive in nutrients, enough to satisfy good plant health while restraining vine canopy vigor.
OUR UNIQUE SITE
While our site shares a lot of similarities with our Ribbon Ridge AVA, it's the unique climate at The South Face that defines our wines. Our vineyard sits on the narrow south end of Ribbon Ridge, where the ridge rises abruptly from the west, south, east and meanders along its spine to the north. Because of our unobstructed, true south-face hilltop location, our vines get up to 16 hours of daily sun in the growing season. Geographically, there is a narrow wind pathway coming from the Pacific Ocean bringing constant cool breeze to our site, which regulates the temperature and reduces disease pressure. Oregon's bountiful winter rain and warmer temperature at our site give an early start at bud break, while our sandy soil on the slope quickly drains away the excessive moisture later in the growing season. The resultant is a low yielding, deep in color, and highly concentrated fruit. It's this dream fruit that gives us a deep velvet (almost ink like) color, opulent, while acid balanced wine. Wine connoisseurs often refer to our South Face wines as augmented Ribbon Ridge.
"As you sit back and quietly observe this place… you see an enormous oak tree, almost three hundred years old, anchoring the remnants of the original homestead built in the early 1900's. A seasonal creek by the west wooded area attracts a wide variety of wildlife; deer, coyote, bobcat, even bear and elk. You can hear an amazing chorus of doves, robins, and blue jays in the oak groves. This abundance of nature and wildlife give this place a vibrant energy. Overlooking the vineyard to the south, the panoramic view of the north face of the Dundee Hills is all yours to enjoy. In the mornings of Oregon's cooler seasons, the upper site transits in-and-out of the misty fog, like an inspired photograph by Ansel Adams."
We feel lucky that, after looking for a vineyard site for eight years, we are guardians of this place. We also promise our vineyard peers, some of them have been wanting to own this site for 25 years, we'll be good stewards of this land.