V2 Uncorked Spring 2024

April 5, 2024

Happy Spring 2024 everyone!

As the clouds and rain slowly depart Oregon, we’re incredibly excited about the promise of 2024, which also marks Violet Vines’ fifth anniversary and vintage!

We thought we would share some updates with you as we’re preparing for the upcoming growing season.

In the Winery

The 2023 vintage continues to show incredible promise.  We can’t help ourselves from frequent barrel sampling! Just last week, we sampled many of the ’23 white wines, including Chenin Blanc, Albariño and two of our Chardonnays. We’re planning to bottle four white wines in June – maybe even an Ultra Violet!  

We’re excited to announce that we just disgorged our first Méthode Traditionnelle sparkling wine with plans to release it in May.  It’s a non-vintage Extra Brut sparkling wine comprised of 67% Chardonnay and 33% Pinot noir (all from the Eola-Amity Hills AVA).  We started pouring it in the tasting room for guests and have gotten nothing but rave reviews. 

On March 20th, we bottled our 2023 Rosé of Pinot Noir and our first-ever Rocks District Syrah from the 2022 vintage.  We will be releasing the “the pink stuff” in April with tentative plans to release the Syrah in about six months.  Not to worry, stop by the tasting room and we’ll pour you some Syrah pre-release! One last thing… the way we’ve named our estate vineyard blocks means we never thought we would have a label with our oldest son’s name on it. Well, that’s no longer the case!  We produced a wine for “Willamette – The Pinot Noir Auction”, which is a fundraising event the Willamette Valley Wineries Association (https://www.willamettewines.auction/).  For the auction, we made seven cases of an incredible ’22 Pinot noir which we’ve labeled “Taylor + Two”, reflecting the influence of his Pinot noir Clone 777 block combined with those of his two younger brothers. 

In the Vineyards

We’re just about ready for the 2024 growing season! 

In the Rocks District of Milton-Freewater AVA, we were thankful that we buried the estate two-year old vines to protect them from the winter cold.  Mid-January temperatures dipped below -5 degrees Fahrenheit for a few days causing significant damage to most vineyards in the area. By burying the “baby” vines, we still expect our first 2024 Estate Syrah harvest from our Set In Stone vineyard.  The vines are now above ground, pruned and tied to the fruiting wire.  Earlier this week, we even saw some sap emerge, which is the precursor to bud-break!

By the way, if you’re interested in learning more about the Rocks District, check out this website offered by the Rocks District Winegrowers – https://rocksdistrict.com/

At our estate vineyard in Sheridan, all of the pruning is complete. This is the “fourth leaf” for our vines planted in 2020, meaning we’re expecting 70% of a normal three-ton-per-acre crop for our two Chardonnay blocks, as well as the Pinot noir Wadenswil, Clone 828 and Clone 115 blocks. This year, this fruit will go into our estate “still” wines, and we’re even planning to produce our Rose of Pinot Noir from our estate fruit too.  One more year until we start harvesting Syrah, Viognier, Cabernet Franc, Albariño and Chenin Blanc from the vineyard!


We’ve had a lot of requests for recipes and other food-pairing advice over the past 12 months, with guests asking what pairs well with our wines and what are some of our favorite recipes that complement our wines.  The Willamette Valley Wineries Association also challenged its members to share local recipes, and thanks to April’s talent in the kitchen, we’ve started sharing recipes via our blog.  Here’s a great example – https://violetvines.com/pnw-salad-and-estate-pinot-noir/. Admittedly, I’m not always the biggest fan of salads, but this one is amazing. 

PS. April recently received her WSET level 2 Award in Wine credential from Lindfield University after passing with distinction.  She is applying much of what she learned to our expanded tasting notes as well as food and wine pairing efforts.

An Adventurous Streak

As we were reflecting on the first four years producing Oregon wines, we recognized that we have a bit of an adventurous streak and enjoy taking the path less taken at times.  We often like to experiment and share some of the outcomes of these experiments with our wine club members and guests. 

The latest adventure involves a grape varietal that we haven’t produced in the past, that being Pinotage. I first tasted this wine during a trip to South Africa and really enjoyed it. We found it growing in southern Oregon and because it’s a cross between Pinot noir and Cinsaut (the latter originating from Southern France), we thought it would represent a nice “bridge” between our Burgundian wines and those we’re now producing from those historically originating from southern France (such as Syrah, Grenache and Mourvèdre).

If you want to learn more, check out this blog we wrote earlier in the year – https://violetvines.com/what-is-pinotage/

Upcoming Events

This year, we’re participating – for the first time – in the Astoria Crab, Seafood and Wine Festival from April 26th to April 28th.  To learn more, here’s their website – https://astoriacrabfest.com/

We’re also thrilled to announce we were selected to participate in the International Pinot Noir Celebration (http://ipnc.org) held annually at Linfield University in McMinnville, OR. This year, the IPNC will be July 26th through the 28th and we’ll be joining 70 featured wineries from all over the world on the 28th to pour for guests. It was at this event 20 years ago we truly cemented our dream to produce Pinot noir, so participating in the IPNC has special meaning for us.      

That’s it for now.  For our wine club members, you’ll soon be learning more about the Spring allocation which will be shipped – or ready for pickup – toward the end of April (as always, you’ll be invited to fully customize your allocation).  We also hope you’re enjoying the much-improved online experience at violetvines.com, thanks to our friends at Crimson Vine Marketing and Commerce7. 

Enjoy your Spring and we hope to see you in the Willamette Valley this year.

Brian and April

V2 Uncorked Spring 2024
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