GASTON, Ore. — Elk Cove Vineyards, one of the Oregon wine industry’s most respected wineries, announced Monday that it has purchased Goodrich Road Vineyard near the town of Yamhill.
The 69-acre parcel in the Yamhill-Carlton American Viticultural Area features 21 acres of Pinot Noir and Chardonnay.
“We are super excited about continuing down the path of complete control of vineyard sources, and this certainly helps,” Elk Cove owner/winemaker Adam Campbell told Great Northwest Wine. “We mostly work with estate fruit these days, so we had not worked directly with Goodrich but had admired the wines that other folks had made from this fruit.”
This year marks the family’s 40th anniversary in the Oregon wine industry, and Wine Press Northwest magazine named Elk Cove its Pacific Northwest Winery of the Year in 2007. The company, founded by Campbell’s parents, now farms six vineyards spanning more than 300 acres in Chehalem Mountains and Yamhill-Carlton AVAs after its purchase of Goodrich Road.
Goodrich Road Vineyard prized for Willakenzie soils
Until this winter, the Campbells’ most recent acquisition was Clay Court Vineyard, a 15-acre site on Parrot Mountain near Sherwood, which they purchased in 2009. Their other north Willamette Valley estate plantings are Five Mountain Vineyard (38 acres planted in 1978 by Dick Ponzi, purchased in 2005) and Windhill Vineyard (20 acres planted in 1974, purchased in 1996). The 40-acre Elk Cove Estate Vineyard was founded in 1974 and now covers about 40 acres, including Roosevelt Vineyard — which the family views as its best block.
Their largest at 118 acres is Mount Richmond, a 1996 joint ownership vineyard between founders Pat and Joe Campbell with Adam and his wife, Carrie Godlee-Campbell.
Goodrich Road features the same Willakenzie marine sediment soil as Mount Richmond, and despite its youthful vines, Campbell said the quality of wines made from its fruit by King Estate, Raptor Ridge and Soter Vineyards commanded his family’s attention.
Elk Cove has not produced a Chardonnay or a sparkling wine in several years, but that may change as a result of the transaction announced Monday.
Spree of Oregon vineyard acquisitions continues
The vineyard, which has been sustainably farmed and achieved Low Input Viticulture and Enology certification, features 17 acres of Pinot Noir and 4 acres of Chardonnay. There are an estimated 20 plantable acres remaining, and its elevation ranges from 225 to 300 feet.
“It was most recently managed by Atlas Vineyard Management, but we have taken over all operations as of March 1,” Campbell said.
Premier Pacific Vineyards, a Napa, Calif., investment group, developed wine grape plantings along the West Coast as part of its partnership established in 2002 with the California Public Employees’ Retirement System. The CalPERS terminated the relationship effective Jan. 1, 2012.
In the Pacific Northwest, the recent sales of parcels at one time held by PPV include Gran Moraine (Yamhill-Carlton) to Jackson Family Wines, Roserock (Eola-Amity Hills) to Domaine Drouhin Oregon, Willakia (Eola-Amity HIlls AVA ) to Ste. Michelle Wine Estates, Yamhela (Yamhill-Carlton) to Precept Wines and Zena Crown (Eola-Amity HIlls) to Jackson Family Wines.
The Campbells said Zepponi & Co., based in Santa Rosa., Calif., negotiated the sale.