Ste. Michelle Wine Estates acquires Eola-Amity Hills property

The "Great Oregon Land Grab" continues.


Published:

Ste. Michelle Wine Estates, the parent company of Chateau Ste. Michelle as well as a number of other wineries and brands in the Pacific Northwest and California, has acquired 298-acres of land in Oregon’s Eola-Amity Hills. The land, which includes the 119-acre Willakia Vineyard, will be used to supply fruit for Erath Winery, which St. Michelle purchased in 2006.

“Our acquisition of the Willakia Vineyard demonstrates our commitment to upholding Erath’s legacy as the leading Pinot Noir producer in Oregon,” said Ste. Michelle President and CEO Ted Baseler. Baseler noted that the property also has the potential for a future winery.

Willakia Vineyard was first planted in 2000 and now includes 98-acres of Pinot Noir and 21-acres of Chardonnay as well as 30 additional acres of arable land. The vineyard gets its name from the two predominant soils types on the property, Willakenzie and Nekia. The land was previously an investment by the California Public Employee Retirement System (CalPERS). Zepponi & Company, a global wine industry mergers and acquisitions advisory firm, negotiated the sale.

“Willakia Vineyard is a dream vineyard for a winemaker,” said Erath winemaker Gary Horner. “It offers this great combination of small blocks planted with diverse clones and rootstocks at different aspects, slopes, and orientations. It will give me a broad array of fruit styles to craft beautiful estate wines.”

The last twelve months have seen an unprecedented series of investments in Oregon’s Willamette Valley. These include the purchase of 1,300 acres of land by the California-based wine giant Jackson Family Wines; 374 acres by Seattle-based Precept Wines; 279 acres by the Drouhin Family, owners of Joseph Drouhin in Burgundy and Domaine Drouhin Oregon; and 32 acres by France’s Louis Jadot. Rumors swirl that other investments are imminent.

With Pinot Noir continuing to show strong growth in the marketplace and Oregon Pinot Noir commanding a considerably higher price point than its California peers, don’t expect what some are calling the “Great Oregon Land Grab” to end any time soon.

Related Articles

4 Multi-Cultural Jewish Recipes

These modern, authentically inauthentic dishes incorporate global influences and pair with a wide range of beverages.

Whole Foods Market Launches Direct-to-Consumer Wine Club

Plus other news and notes in the world of wine, spirits and beer.

Argentina’s Alternative Top-Rated Wine

Malbec is Argentina’s defining wine, but a growing number of ­top-quality Cabernet Sauvignons—and a few Cabernet Francs—prove that the country is no one-trick pony.

Germany’s Best Pinot Noirs

Though cultivated locally for centuries, today’s elegant expressions are fast becoming global darlings.

Subscribe

You can unsubscribe at any time. View an example of our newsletter.

Shop

>

Related Web Articles