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Willamette Valley, Oregon

Estate Manager: 

Eugenia Keegan

Gran Moraine takes its name from the cataclysmic floods that occurred in the northern Willamette Valley of Oregon during the last ice age. As the flood waters receded, they sculpted the region, leaving a distinct pattern of small indentations or mini valleys (moraines)—much like the Côte ’Or in Burgundy. These outcroppings manifest themselves on our property in the Yamhill-Carlton AVA, where 220 acres are planted to the classic Burgundian varieties Pinot Noir and Chardonnay.

The Yamhill-Carlton AVA status was granted in 2004 to distinguish fruit grown in the oldest marine sedimentary-based soils in the greater Willamette Valley. These soils and the growing conditions create wine with a profile that is distinct from that of wine from the surrounding AVAs in several significant ways. More specifically, the Pinot Noirs lean to black fruit, minerality, and floral—rose and violet—elements.

In addition, the AVA is located on hillsides between 200 and 700 feet in elevation, the sweet spot for distinctive, age-worthy Pinot Noir.

The climate of the Yamhill-Carlton combined with the sedimentary rock–based soils of our growing sites produce wines with nuanced fruit and earth characters, driven by ageable tannins that are structured yet elegant when young.

Oregon wine produced in the tradition and spirit of classic Burgundian varieties is the vision the Gran Moraine team embraces and strives to achieve.