Skip to main content

Where to Drink White Wine in the Willamette Valley

You know it, we know it, heck even Grandma Jean who hasn’t left her house in years and subsists on Hello Fresh and her stories knows it – the Willamette Valley in Oregon is known for its Pinot Noirs. The red wine is made in abundance in the area, thanks to a climate, soil conditions, and winemakers who know how to work with the notoriously fickle grape.

The thing is, pinot isn’t the only thing being produced in the area. With hundreds of wineries, there are tons of options for those looking for something a little different. With the harvest season here, we decided to put together a brief guide of wineries in the Willamette Valley that are producing great non-pinot wines.

Below, you’ll find four of our favorites. While some of the wineries only have one or two releases, they’re damn good releases and, while you’re there, you may as well try some pinots, too. It’d be rude if you didn’t.

Sokol Blosser

Sokol Blosser
Sokol Blosser

One of the most prominent wineries in Oregon, Sokol Blosser helped craft the Oregon wine scene that we get to enjoy today. Starting in 1971 and producing its first wines in the late 1970s, the winery slowly grew to become the sixth-largest producer in the state. If you’re looking for white wines, this is a great place to start. Whether you’re looking for a Chardonnay, a Pinot Blanc or a Pinot Gris, they have all of those and more. In addition, those looking for something a little sweeter can indulge in Sokol Blosser’s dessert Riesling.

Alloro Vineyard

Alloro Vineyard
Image used with permission by copyright holder

An estate winery located in Sherwood, Oregon, Alloro Vineyard has 34 acres of vineyards where the winery grows Pinot Noir, Chardonnay, Riesling, and Muscat. From these, Alloro currently produces two white wines – a Chardonnay and Vinno Nettare Dessert Wine. The Chardonnay is barrel-fermented for 11 months in 20% new French Oak, giving the wine a full-bodied and smooth flavor. Rich buttery notes pervade for a well-rounded glass of wine. The dessert wine is made of 65% Muscat and 35% Riesling made in the ice wine style. The floral notes and a good amount of acidity help balance the syrupy sweetness.

Vidon Vineyard

Image used with permission by copyright holder

Started by former NASA particle physicist Don Hagge (he was chief of the physics branch for the Apollo Space Program for missions 6-13), Vidon Vineyard started as Hagge’s retirement project that would combine his childhood growing up on a farm and the time he spent doing post-graduate physics research in France. Vidon produces a number of Pinot Noir clones (which are delicious), but we recommend going for its Chardonnay. The wine, a 2016 vintage, is full of apple and pear notes on the nose, with more pear on the palate. It is full-bodied without being overwhelming.

Bells Up Winery

Bells Up Winery

Located just north of Newberg, Oregon, Bells Up Winery was established by Dave Specter – a former corporate tax attorney – and his wife Sara Pearson Specter in 2012. Named both after the location of the winery (Bell Road) and Dave’s two decades of experience as a French Horn player, the boutique winery has been producing wines since the mid 2010s. Its flagship release, Titan, is of course a pinot noir, but Bells Up also produces two white wines – a Seyval Blanc (“Helios”) which is sadly sold out currently, and Rhapsody, a Pinot Blanc produced in 2018 that expresses rich grapefruit notes and a good amount of minerality. More tropical fruit notes on the palate lead to a rich drinking experience from beginning to end.

Editors' Recommendations

Sam Slaughter
Sam Slaughter was the Food and Drink Editor for The Manual. Born and raised in New Jersey, he’s called the South home for…
The ultimate wine club? Here’s what you should know about The Vines Global
If you want to indulge in fine wines while trotting the globe, The Vines might have what you’re craving
A scene from The Vines Global's May 2023 trip to the Willamette Valley in Oregon.

Andrew Davey Andrew Davey/The Manual

What is The Vines? Good question! Short answer: The Vines is “an explorer's club for winemakers and aficionados” where explorers go on curated trips to some of the world’s top wine regions and try making their own fine wine. 

Read more
A guide to the many gems of Santa Barbara wine country
Want to check out one of the most exciting American wine scenes? Go to Santa Barbara
Brewer-Clifton vineyard view.

California has it good. From pristine coastlines and great weather to remarkable wine regions, it's hard not to love the place. Santa Barbara in particular touts all of the above and is, among other things, one of the most buzzed-about American wine areas at the moment.

It's home to great winemakers and bottles that won't break the bank. The scenery is stunning and it's all headquartered around a couple of big cities. That means you can taste by day and explore town by night.

Read more
The 7 best wines to drink this Easter: Elevate your holiday meal
Spring spells the Easter holiday, feasts, and some great wines, like these spectacular seven options.
Chenin Blanc Wine

Easter season is here, and whether you're all in and already trying on the bunny costume or just like a good feast, some good wine is in order. At the dinner table, you'll likely enjoy some ham, lamb, pot roast, or spring vegetables. These staple dishes can be elevated to new heights with the right wine selections.

Perhaps you're hosting Easter dinner and want to impress some friends with a new wine discovery. Perhaps you're just looking for a romantic meal with your significant other and want to wow them with an exceptional pairing. Whatever your motives this Easter, we've got some fantastic wines for you — bottles that accompany the fare but are also special in their own right.

Read more