STATEMENT ON OREGON FIRES
Since the origins of the Willamette Valley AVA, the community has relied on each other to impart knowledge, share resources and offer a support system to those in need. Willamette Valley winemakers have successfully mitigated wildfire smoke in years’ past, including the highly lauded 2018 vintage, and we will continue to do so this year. It’s the kindness of community that consistently fuels resilience and strength.
As we draw on that strength to move forward together, we thank our Willamette Valley wine lovers around the world for their support. Many of you have asked how we’re doing and what all this means for the 2020 vintage.
We must first remember that the Willamette Valley is vast and diverse. Every winemaker is approaching this situation individually and has a variety of factors to consider.
As always, there will be beautiful wines coming from our region. There may be less Pinot noir compared to previous years, because winemakers are committed to making sure every bottle that is made meets the region’s high quality standards.
We also need to remember that this region is more than Pinot noir. There will be outstanding white wines, rosés and sparkling wines that come out of the 2020 vintage.
With that, we are happy to announce that the Willamette Valley has reopened (as before, in accordance with the Governor’s COVID-19 guidelines by county; see below). We’ve listed resources we trust below.
For the media
Emergency Relief Donation Opportunities
Northwest Red Cross (serves Clackamas, Clatsop, Columbia, Gilliam, Hood River, Lincoln, Marion, Multnomah, Polk, Sherman, Tillamook, Wasco, Washington and Yamhill counties)
Southwest Red Cross (serves Benton, Coos, Curry, Douglas, Jackson, Josephine, Klamath, Lane, Lake and Linn counties)
- Washington County Services, Beaverton
- YCAP Regional Food Bank, McMinnville
- Metro Services, Portland
- Food for Lane County, Eugene
- Linn Benton Food Share, Corvallis
- Marion Polk Food Share, Salem
AN UPDATE FROM WINE COUNTRY ON COVID-19 PRECAUTIONS
We hope you’re staying safe and well during this time of uncertainty and quickly changing information regarding the COVID-19 virus. As of June 19th all Oregon counties have been able to reopen for in-person tastings on a limited basis.
See the Phase One and Phase Two information below for details and a list of reopened wineries by county.
Please be aware that our community has the health of our guests at heart, and our wineries and hospitality partners are taking a variety of measures in accordance with the Governor’s guidelines and our own agreed-upon best practices. Not every winery in a given county will reopen at the same time and in the same way. Check before planning a visit to confirm your specific destination’s policies.
For our friends farther away: if you find yourself getting stir-crazy in the house, remember that your favorite winery likely ships to your state and may even have a case shipping deal right now to brighten this dark time for wine lovers like you. Our #WVCommunity hub has offers and deals as well as recipes, playlists and more from Willamette Valley wine country. Check with the wineries you love, consider an online order, and know that your business is deeply appreciated as we weather this storm together.
From all of us in wine country, thank you for being a supporter of Willamette Valley wine. Each and every one of us looks forward to welcoming you back as soon as we can.
Welcome Back to Wine Country
Phases One and two
Beginning May 15th, depending on their county location, wineries and tasting rooms have begun to resume on-site tastings. Read more.
Beginning June 5th, many of the first counties to enter Phase One have been approved to enter Phase Two. Click here to review and read the latest Oregon Health Authority Update with more details here.
As of June 19th all Oregon counties have reopened for Phase One at minimum (Phase Two counties noted below).
The State of Oregon has been closely monitoring the COVID-19 related health data since March 18th and has rolled out a multi-phase plan to reopen various business sectors in Oregon. Read more about the State of Oregon COVID-19 response and reopening.
Members of the Willamette Valley Wineries Association are committed to slow and safe reopenings of their tasting rooms and appreciate your understanding and support.
This industry-led effort supports and encourages businesses to make specific commitments that showcase a true Valley-wide message of unity, care and excellence.
To date, more than 130 businesses have pledged to make these Willamette Valley Responsible Reopening commitments. See their commitments and learn more.
Updated travel advisories can be found here:
How do I know what wineries and tasting rooms are open?
Wineries and tasting rooms are slowly reopening by county. We are posting reopenings below as soon as winery announcements come in.
Should I make appointments?
During Phase One and Phase Two, many tasting rooms will be appointment-only. Because of the fluidity with this reopening phase, you will need to call or visit the websites of the tasting rooms you want to visit in advance to obtain current visitor information.
Do I need to wear a mask?
As of Wednesday, July 1, face coverings are required for employees and visitors/customers in all public indoor spaces in Oregon per the Governor’s order. Learn more here. Many tasting rooms can provide disposables. Always call to confirm.
How will social distancing be implemented?
Social distancing protocols at tastings rooms will be in place both inside and outside. You won’t see tasting bar seating, but do expect to see more tables separated by a minimum of six feet throughout tasting rooms, and more use of outdoor space.
Can I bring a group?
Associated groups for social distancing will be limited to 10 people. An associated group doesn’t have to be from the same household. You can create an associated group with friends or other people you are traveling with. Please note that many wineries will be limiting group size to fewer than 10 people so you need to confirm group limits with each winery.
How will service be different?
You can expect more pre-poured wine flights, limited wine bar service, and more seated tastings. What will not be different is the genuine hospitality that wine lovers have come to associate with the Willamette Valley.
What about restaurants?
Restaurants, by county, have been allowed to offer in-person dining since May 15th. Not all restaurants are opening at the same time, so again, call to confirm.
Can tasting rooms still serve food?
Please check with each tasting room ahead of visiting.
Will wineries accept cash?
Many wineries will be moving toward touch-less payment options. If you want to pay with cash we suggest you confirm ahead of time with the tasting rooms you plan to visit.
What are the requirements to run a tour on a tour bus?
Tour operators must follow Specific Guidelines for Transit Agencies and Phase 2 Guidance for Indoor and Outdoor Entertainment Facilities. At least three (3) feet must be maintained consistently between passengers. Six (6) feet must be maintained between the driver and passengers, except during boarding and when assisting those with mobility devices. Tour attendees in the same party may sit fewer than three (3) feet apart. Tour operators must clean the bus every four hours and in between tour groups, with an emphasis on frequently touched surfaces. Drivers and riders must wear face coverings in accordance with Statewide Mask, Face Shield, Face Covering guidance. Tour operators must limit non-essential travel in accordance with the Governor’s Executive Orders.
The Operators of Indoor and Outdoor Entertainment Facilities FAQ can be found here:
TO OUR VISITORS, on Behalf of our Tasting Rooms
Wineries Reopening By County
The listed wineries have told us they are open for on-site consumption according to their county’s reopening phase. Each winery links to its individual details. Note: This list pertains to COVID-related reopenings only. Because air quality issues, power outages and highway closures may be present due to the wildfires beginning the week of September 8 in certain parts of the region, always call ahead when attempting to visit any winery in the Willamette Valley to confirm your plans.
Open For Phase One
Open For Phase two
Linn County (No wineries have submitted reopening details)
Tasting Room Protocol Document
County Boundaries Map