If you are looking for outstanding Merlot, Cabernet Sauvignon, Chardonnay or other wines, you should sample some of the fine Oregon wines from the Applegate Valley American Viticultural Area (AVA). Encompassed by the larger Rogue Valley AVA in southern Oregon, this wine growing region has over 400 acres of vineyards, along with 23 vineyards and six wineries. It runs from the California border to the Rogue Valley, approximately fifty miles. Below is some information on the Applegate Valley AVA, along with some recommended wineries, vineyards and wines.
History. The first wine grapes were planted in the Applegate Valley AVA in 1852, followed by the first official Oregon winery here in 1873. This winery closed in 1907 and, followed by prohibition, it wasn’t until the 1970s that this wine region began to grow. The Applegate Valley was approved as an appellation in 2001.
Climate and soil. This Oregon wine region has a warmer, drier growing season than much of the state, wonderful for warm climate grapes. Its soil is deep and well-drained, the perfect growing region for excellent wine grapes.
Wines. The Applegate Valley AVA produces mainly Merlot, Cabernet Sauvignon, Chardonnay and Syrah.
Vineyards and Wineries. Below are just a few of the outstanding wineries and vineyards of this Oregon wine region, along with some recommended wines.
Applegate Red Winery. This Oregon winery uses sustainable farming practices on its 20 acres of grapes, and only produces red wines. Along with its signature wine Applegate Red, you should definitely try their 2006 Syrah Blend, with aromas of blackberry followed by black currant and vanilla flavors. To learn more about this Oregon winery and its wines click here.
Cricket Hill Winery. Sample this boutique Applegate Valley winery’s Old World winemaking techniques, which allow it to produce such beauties as its 2002 Rogue Valley Merlot. This Oregon red wine has aromas of plum and chocolate, and flavors of raspberries and smoke. You should also try its 2006 Midnight Diamond Merlot; you will really enjoy its flavors of chocolate and coffee. For more information on this Oregon winery click here.
Troon Vineyard. An award winning Oregon winery which was established in the Applegate Valley in 1972, this boutique winery produces Zinfandel, Merlot and Chardonnay wines, among others. Organic and sustainable farming techniques are used in its vineyards, and they are also certified as Salmon Safe. For a good example of their fine wines, try their 2005 Reserve Blossom Fire Cabernet Sauvignon. It has aromas of blackberry, and flavors of licorice and vanilla. Also try their 2004 Old Vine Meritage, with black cherry aromas and flavors of chocolate and red fruit. To learn more about this Applegate Valley vineyard and its wines, click here.