Cherry Hill Winery lies directly atop the 45th parallel — halfway between the equator and the North Pole, at the same Pinot-friendly latitude as Burgundy.
This is a region in bloom: we are neighbors with many other noted Eola-Amity Hills vineyards and wineries. Cherry Hill is a 150-acre estate, with 90 of those acres planted to pommard and dijon clones of pinot noir.
All pruning, thinning, and leaf pulling is done by hand; so is the harvesting itself, a rarity in these days of increasing automation.
Our vineyard lies on south and southwest slopes at elevations from 250-450 feet, which offers the maximum degree days for fruit ripening. Vines include Dijon (115, 777,113) and Pommard clones set on phylloxera-resistant rootstock.
The vineyard’s 100,000 vines are planted with 6’ x 8’ spacing using a vertical trellising system. Irrigation comes from our seven-acre spring-fed reservoir. We crop to 2 tons per acre and harvest our fruit at precisely 23 brix.
The Eola-Amity Hills are located about an hour south of Portland, near Oregon’s state capital of Salem, on the cusp of the Coastal Range that separates the Willamette Valley from the Pacific Ocean. The moderating influence of the Van Duzer corridor through the coastal range, combined with the bowl-like shape of our site, provides ideal growing conditions for Pinot Noir.
Cherry Hill vineyard was planted in 1998 after extensive soil analysis revealed that the native Jory soils were beautifully suited to pinot noir. Jory subsoils present in the vineyard include nekia, hazelair, chehulpum, steiwer and bellpine.
The cool climate and rich soil combine to create Pinot Noir fruit of deep color, complex aromas, and distinctively concentrated flavors. We’re blessed to have a variety of soils, facings and elevations to work with, and learning to ‘paint’ with this varied palette is one of our most exciting prospects for the future. As Mike Sweeney likes to say, “God was good to Cherry Hill.”