The Drouhin family, owners of Joseph Drouhin in Burgundy and Domaine Drouhin Oregon (DDO), has purchased the 279-acre Roserock Vineyard in the Eola-Amity Hills. The property—which currently has 122 acres planted, most of it to Pinot Noir, with an additional 80 arable acres—was purchased from Pacific Vineyards Partners for an undisclosed sum. This adds to DDO’s 225 acres at its estate property in the Dundee Hills and makes the winery one of the largest landholders in the Willamette Valley.
“When our father, Robert, bought land in Oregon in 1987, we were excited to discover what was possible,” said Véronique Drouhin-Boss, DDO’s winemaker. “We have the same feeling today: the potential in Roserock is incredible.”
DDO produced its first vintage of Oregon Pinot Noir in 1988. At the time, the winery’s interest in the area was seen as a validation of Oregon’s ability to produce world-class Pinot Noir. The winery expanding its vineyard holdings only adds to the unprecedented interest and activity in Oregon in 2013.
Earlier this year, California-base wine giant Jackson Family Wines made its first investments in the state, purchasing 1,300-plus acres of vineyard land throughout the Willamette Valley. Meanwhile famed Burgundy producer Louis Jadot made its first vineyard acquisition outside of France, purchasing the 32-acre Resonance Vineyard in the Eola-Amity Hills. Finally, Seattle-based Precept Wines purchased 374 acres in Yamhill-Carlton. This flurry of activity has led many to believe that the time is now to try to lock of fruit sources by purchasing vineyards and negotiating long-term contracts before prices escalate and winemakers lose access to fruit.
“We will continue to invest in Burgundy, but of course, it is getting difficult to buy something of Roserock’s size in Burgundy, and we think it will be harder to do so in Oregon soon,” said Frédéric Drouhin, President of Joseph Drouhin.”