A Little Pinot Noir In Willamette Valley – Discovering Oregon’s Wine Country – Day 71

What a day it was taking in the beauty of Oregon’s Wine Country!

And even more, witnessing firsthand just how much the entire Willamette Valley region in Oregon has to offer.

Oregon's wine country
Our drive through the Willamette Valley was filled with vineyards, vegetable fields, orchards and more.

The fertile, rolling landscape is well-known for producing top-notch fruit and wines. But it also happens to be home to some of the finest vegetable and flower fields around too.

As we drove through the valley, it was surprising to see the huge variety of crops grown.

Oregon's Wine Country
The Willamette Valley is well-known for it’s pinot grape production. And of course, the tasty wines made from them.

You name it, and it is grown in the Willamette Valley. In fact, it’s easier to list what isn’t grown here than what is!

Everything from grapes, blueberries, strawberries and blackberries, to roses, dahlias, onions, apples and more.

Hazelnut Trees?

There were surprises along the way too. For instance, we never realized Oregon had such a massive concentration of hazelnut trees!

Oregon's wine country
Oregon is the largest producer of hazelnuts in the United States.

In fact, so much so, that 99% of the U.S. hazelnut production comes from the Beaver State. Who knew?!

A Little Pinot Noir At Willamette Valley Vineyards

But of course, there are those incredible vineyards to see as well.

The fertile, sloping soil is indeed perfect for growing grapes. So well in fact, that the Willamette Valley is now home to over 450 wineries within a 150 mile radius.

Oregon's Wine Country
The tower windows at Willamette Vineyards. With a quick climb up the steps, you can sip on a glass of wine with a great view of the vineyards below.

Without a doubt, the highlight of our day was a visit to Willamette Valley Vineyards.

Nestled in the surrounding hills in Turner, Oregon, Willamette Valley Vineyards is known for making great wine. In particular, Pinot Noir.

Oregon's Wine Country
The main tasting room at Willamette Valley Vineyards. With the roaring fire and an indoor pizza oven, we were in heaven.

As we drove through the large gates and up to the tasting room (which seemed more like a tasting castle to us!), we were in awe of size and beauty of the entire grounds.

From Humble Beginnings…

The sprawling vineyard, first started back in 1983, has grown from humble beginnings. Founder Jim Bernau, unable to afford irrigation during his first year of operation, watered his first plantings of grapes by hand with 17 hoses strung together. Talk about passion!

And when it comes to the success of it all? One thing is for sure, our glass of their signature Estate Pinot Noir wine was spot on!

Pinot Noir
A glass of Pinot Noir was the perfect ending to an incredible day discovering Oregon’s wine country.

It certainly lived up to it’s billing and then some. It is quite easy to see why they have been called “One of America’s Great Pinot Noir Producers” by Wine Enthusiast.

And it was certainly was the perfect ending to a perfect day in Oregon’s Wine Country. We have loved our time so far in Oregon, and with a few days still left in this beautiful state, we can’t wait to see more.

Happy Traveling – Jim & Mary


  • Day 71 of 365
  • States Visited: 11 / 50
  • National Parks / Monuments Visited : 10
  • Stayed In : Albany, Oregon
  • Miles Driven : 79.8
  • Total Trip Miles To Date : 7623.3
  • Total Gallons Used : 568.90
  • Biking Miles : 0
  • Biking Miles To Date : 133.0
  • Hiking Miles : 1.5
  • Hiking Miles To Date : 151.5

About Our Living Simple Tour

On September 9th, 2019, we set out in our NuCamp T@B 400 Teardrop Camper to travel to every state. You can check out all of our dates here : Dates for the States

You can follow along by signing up for our twice weekly email updates at the bottom of the page. You can also follow us on Facebook : Live Simple Tour Facebook and Instagram : Live Simple Now Instagram Page.

4 thoughts on “A Little Pinot Noir In Willamette Valley – Discovering Oregon’s Wine Country – Day 71

  • November 21, 2019 at 1:28 pm

    Tyee Winery outside of Corvallis is a wonderful family run winery that is so beautiful. It is a Century Farm. It is a beautiful place to explore as well especially there little hike around the Beaver pond. I grew up in this area. It is my heart place. Cascades to the East, the Coastal mountains to the West….it was an idyllic place to grow up.

    • November 21, 2019 at 6:43 pm

      We briefly drove through Corvallis today. Unfortunately, it was too early for wine, but we did get a chance to drive around OSU campus and even had the opportunity to get right on the field! What a beautiful area!!!

  • November 26, 2019 at 11:28 pm

    Regarding the hazelnuts you discovered: Back in the late 1940s through the 1950s, my paternal grandfather farmed a 5-acre hillside plot just outside Sherwood, Oregon. Its outstanding feature was a hazelnut orchard, from which he harvested annually. His Christmas gift to us up in Steilacoom, Washington, for years was a 5-pound gunny sack of the filberts, sent through the U.S. Postal Service with only an address tag attached to the bag. Had forgotten all about that till I read your post!

    • November 27, 2019 at 10:51 pm

      Oh what a wonderful story! So glad that our trip could bring back your own amazing memories! Maybe this year we will even get some Filberts and if not, at least we know now where to find some! Thanks for following our journey!!


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