Yamhill-Carlton District AVA
North of McMinnville adjacent
to the Dundee Hills AVA, the foothills of the Coast Range create an AVA of
nearly 60,000 acres, centered on the hamlets of Carlton and Yamhill.
Black Cherries and
Yamhill-Carlton AVA is rapidly emerging as a global center of Pinot Noir
production. This pastoral northwest corner of the Willamette Valley provides
a unique set of growing conditions. The Coast Range to the west soars to nearly
3500 feet (1200m) establishing a rain shadow over the entire district.
Additional protection is afforded by the Chehalem Mountains to the north and the
Dundee Hills to the east.
It stays hotter later in the
afternoon in this area, so youíll find fruit-forward black cherry flavors in the
Pinot Noir wines. The area is very spread out in terms of driving and youíll
find yourself driving miles in-between vineyards.
Key Producers in
Big Table Farm, Shea Vineyards, Anne Amie Vineyards, Elk Cove, Wilakenzie
Estate, Penner Ash, Soter, Belle Pente & others
More about the
Importantly, the coarse-grained
ancient marine and glacial sedimentary
soils native to the area are some of the oldest soils in the valley. These
soils drain quickly establishing a natural deficit-irrigation effect. Low
ridges surround the two communities in a horseshoe shape, with the North Yamhill
River coursing through nurseries, grain fields, orchards and more than 1200
acres of vineyard.
vineyards of the Yamhill-Carlton District were planted mostly in the late 1980ís
and early 1990ís. The primary soil of this area is called Willakenzie, named
after the Willamette and McKenzie rivers. It is a sedimentary soil with a
sandstone base rock. The sand content is quite high and the soil therefore very
well drained. The sites are generally on the lower slopes of a volcanic ridge.
Wines of the area possess aromas of red and black fruits, with added elements of
cocoa, leather and fresh-turned earth. Acidity levels are generally lower than
other regions, prompting these wines to be lush and agreeable in their youth.
Carlton, Town of
Nestled between the rolling hills of
Western Oregon, half way between Portland and the coast, you'll find Carlton;
a great Little Town
farming town which prides itself on a strong community and vibrant
downtown. Carlton is located in the heart of Willamette Valley's Wine Country
(The "Wine Capitol of Oregon") with over 40 wineries doing business within the city limits.
The Citizens of Carlton take pride in
their "Great Little Town" which has lovely parks, an outdoor pool, a variety of
downtown businesses and fine local schools.
the story goes...
In 1872 a railroad was built from Portland to
St. Joe, but the train did not stop between the two stations. There was
nothing but farm land where Carlton is now. Some of the farmers talked it
over and as a result Mr. Wilson Carl went to Portland and talked to the
Railroad Company officials to see if they would make a stop closer to them
so they would not have to take their produce so far to the railroad. As a
result, first a flag stop was tried then a regular stop was made at what is
now Carlton (Tyrus Evan Winery is the old train station). The story is that
when the railroad employees talked of this unnamed stop, they started
calling it Carl's town, which was soon shortened to Carlton.
The City was incorporated in 1899.
This short line (Carlton & Coast Railway) extended west from a
connection with the Southern Pacific at Carlton, 14 miles west into the coast
range along the North Yamhill River. The railroad was incorporated in 1910,
started operating in 1912, and abandoned in 1940. Communities on the line
included Pike, Fairdale, and Chesterbrook, with the line ending at a point
called Tillamook Gate. The line was operated primarily for lumber interests as
well as common traffic. In the 1930's the track length was extended slightly
with 23 miles in operation. The company operated several geared logging
locomotives and several standard steam locomotives during its time, the oldest
of which was an ex-Southern Pacific 4-4-0 built in 1868.
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