LOCATED IN THE YAMHILL-CARLTON AVA OF OREGON’S WILLAMETTE VALLEY
In the Northwest corner of Oregon’s Willamette Valley wine country, the Yamhill-Carlton American Viticultural Area (AVA) beckons. There’s a certain magic here. Time slips away when you spend a day savoring the bounty of this place and taking in its stunning scenery. Lush green hills and a picturesque patchwork of vineyards undulate in a low, horseshoe-shaped ridge surrounding the small farming towns of Yamhill and Carlton. In the heart of Oregon’s “rain shadow,” a happy combination of climate and soil produces a liquid gem in a glass – a world-class, deep ruby Pinot Noir. An easy 45-minute drive from Portland and just 40 miles east of the Oregon coast, the wineries of Yamhill-Carlton are an inspiring destination for wine lovers. Take a breath and get away from it all.
Must-Visit Yamhill-Carlton Wineries
Yamhill-Carlton AVA is home to over 50 wineries and more than 100 vineyards. Renowned for their award-winning Yamhill-Carlton Pinot Noirs, the area’s winemakers offer a variety of exquisite wines to explore and savor. Here are a few of our favorite Yamhill County wineries and tasting rooms:
Make your way to the end of a winding road, and the payoff is the extraordinary 360-degree mountain top view from Fairsing Vineyard. The sleek, modern architecture of the vineyard’s tasting room is juxtaposed with the coziness of its interior, which invites sipping of Pinot Noir, Pinot, Rose, and Chardonnay. Take in the majestic views, then stroll the charming labyrinth before heading back down the mountainside.
Abbey Road Farm
Immerse yourself in the total experience that is Abbey Road Farm. This bucolic 82-acre working farm, winery, and event venue welcomes wine lovers to sip, shop, and stay with a tasting room, manicured gardens, horse-riding arena, and luxury bed and breakfast housed in a trio of renovated grain silos. The winery offers Pinot Gris, sparkling Pinot Gris, Pinot Noir, and Chardonnay under the many fine small labels and winemakers it crafts and carries.
Chris James Cellars
Family-owned Chris James Cellars on the western edge of the Yamhill-Carlton AVA has an energy and a friendly ease that promotes good wine and good times. The tasting room is intimate in size, but the outdoor space provides comfortable seating and gorgeous views – and a play area for children. Planted in 2012, Chris James produces Pinot Noir and Sauvignon Blanc, as well as Gewurztraminer, Riesling, Dolcetto and Lagrein.
Elk Cove Vineyards
This historic, family-owned winery is one of Oregon’s oldest, first planted in 1974. Named for elk that roam the bowl-like property, Elk Cove Vineyards is known for its world-class Pinot Noirs, Pinot Gris, Pinot Blanc, Chardonnay, Brut Rose, Rieslings, and the sweet dessert wine, Ultima. The tasting room and terrace offer a spectacular panoramic view of the Coast Range mountains, and picnic tables below provide a serene setting for sipping and food pairings.
Where to Stay in Yamhill-Carlton
After a full day of Yamhill County wine tasting, treat yourself to a relaxing overnight stay in Yamhill or Carlton. It’s the perfect way to spend a weekend or celebratory getaway.
- Experience a country setting with stunning vineyard views at the Yamhill Vineyards Bed & Breakfast. Breakfast features grape juice from the vineyard and fresh fruit from the farm.
- The spacious Carlton Winery Lofts provide all the “home away from home” amenities you need. Enjoy a complimentary wine flight at the nearby Ken Wright Cellars tasting room.
- R.R. Thompson House is all about “Modern Luxury with Historic Style,” offering warm hospitality and a gourmet breakfast in a stunning setting in the heart of Yamhill-Carlton.
- Relax after breakfast on the shaded back porch of the historic Carlton Inn Bed & Breakfast and enjoy the garden, then browse the bookshelves or bring out the board games.
Where to Eat in Yamhill-Carlton
You’ll find a delectable variety of Carlton and Yamhill restaurants and eateries to choose from when ready for a meal. Enjoy friendly takeaway coffee service and quick breakfast or lunch options at Scoggins Creek Coffee in Yamhill. The Larson House Pizzeria & Eatery is a tasty new addition to town with outdoor patio space. A Yamhill favorite, Lago De Chapala Mexican Restaurant offers great food and service in a comfortable setting. In Carlton, The Horse Radish is a delicious stop-off for lunch on the way to wine tasting. Earth & Sea Restaurant does locally sourced surf and turf deliciously – and is also vegetarian friendly. And for special occasions, reserve a table for a fine French dining experience at Cuvee Restaurant.
Things to Do in Carlton, Oregon & Yamhill, Oregon
Life in the Yamhill-Carlton area centers around its vineyards and winemaking. For a unique view of wine country, take a horseback ride. Flying M Ranch offers horseback riding for an hour or all day. The family-run Fiddlestix Ranch specializes in family riding and lessons. Need a shopping fix? These local shops are worth a stop. From venison snack sticks to vintage treasures, the family-owned and operated T&E General Store in Yamhill is a grocery, deli, and secondhand store all in one. The high-quality, all-natural locally made palm-free soaps from Carlton’s charming Rough Cut Soaps & Sundries will leave you wanting more. Hours are limited at Republic of Jam in Carlton. So, if you’re lucky to find this sweet spot open, treat yourself to delicious real fruit jams, luscious nut butters, and tasty cocktail infusions.
Explore the Best Wineries in Yamhill County with Tour DeVine
Experience wine tasting in Yamhill and Carlton, Oregon with the ultimate chauffeur. Tour DeVine helicopter wine tours are the perfect way to explore the scenic beauty and award-winning wineries of the Willamette Valley. Celebrate a special occasion or simply enjoy a day of relaxation. We start with light breakfast bites and bubbly, take you to each wine tasting destination and provide a gourmet lunch. Contact us or call 503.687.3816 to book your Tour DeVine wine tour today!