The Eyrie Vineyards

First Pinot noir in the Willamette Valley, America’s first Pinot gris

How to Order Wines:

Filed under: , , — EyrieVineyards at 4:16 pm on Friday, March 7, 2014


For information about wines and how to order,


Phone: 503•472•6315 | Toll Free: 888•440•4970 | Fax: 503•472•5124


New Tasting Room Hours, and New Old “Elva”

Filed under: , , — EyrieVineyards at 12:22 am on Friday, March 7, 2014

Join us at our working winery in McMinnville for wine tasting and tales of Oregon wine history!  Current vintages available for tasting, as well as rare wines from our Cellar-Certified Library.

Where: The Eyrie Vineyards winery, 935 NE 10th Avenue @ Alpine, McMinnville

When: Daily, 12:00 - 5:00  (Open July 4th, closed Thanksgiving Day and Christmas Week through New Year’s Day.)

    Tasting fee:  Exploration flight, 6 wines, $15;  Library tasting, usually 2 wines, $10.  One tasting fee may be waived per every $60 spent, and sharing is welcomed.

    For more information or to book groups of 8 or more, please contact us at 503.472.6315 or 888.440.4970 or email

    CLICK HERE to download a map to the winery.
    elvamachine Re-introducing the Elva!

    “Something about our old ’70’s Swiss hand-bottler glittering under its dust stirred an idea: If a machine can fill a bottle, why can’t it empty one?”

    I began to see a solution to a problem that’s been occupying me ever since we opened our tasting room: “How can we serve library wines so that every glass is perfect?” - Jason Lett

    Taste the newly-purposed old Elva in action, at our winery tasting room.

    “From grape-growing to elevage, this is an artisanal, non-interventionist, unique operation that continues to turn out some of the most fascinating wines on the planet.” Jay Miller, Wine Advocate

    “The Eyrie Vineyards has not missed a beat since Jason Lett took over the reins from his late father, Oregon legend David Lett.” – 10/09 Wine Advocate


    Filed under: , , , , — EyrieVineyards at 3:14 pm on Saturday, April 6, 2013

    Rachel Halpren sends kudos to Eyrie, and blogs a Drink of the Week recommendation:

    “Eyrie Pinot blanc:……This is a rare bird. A great Pinot Blanc from the United States from this storied winery located in the Willamette Valley, Oregon. I love all the wines from this winery – the Pinot Noir, the Pinot Gris and the Pinot Blanc. But, the Pinot Blanc is produced in very small quantities and shown an inordinate amount of love. Snap it up! If you love Pinot, I would highly recommend ordering a sampler platter from The Eyrie Vineyards. They are super nice and have very reasonably priced shipping rates.”


    Filed under: — EyrieVineyards at 3:09 pm on Wednesday, November 7, 2012

    Jason wrote these notes from a past Harvest time:


    “The beginning is always hard to separate from the end. We started picking today, and it is the end of the vintage for every vine we harvest. The fruit has burgeoned over months, starting as a tiny, citrus-scented flower to reach this apotheosis: a quick snip in the cool of the morning. The life of the cluster has come to its end.

    But that snip is the very beginning of the wine. An acre of grapes goes into one press. The berries, pressed, yield their juice–the first of the run of Pinot gris is tart and green. The press cycles—14 pounds of pressure, then 28, then 42—backing off the platen and fluffing the berries up again between each squeeze. Each cycle brings its own character to the wine, the last yielding juice the color of rose-hip tea and sweet with the sugars stored next to the skins. It takes three hours of slow respiration of the platen of our old basket-presses to finish the cycle. We are left with an empty press and a few hundred pounds of skins, but also with a full tank of heavy juice, giving leave to the yeasts to make it wine.

    When you pick the grapes, you can almost hear the vine’s relief. The canes, unburdened of their fruit, spring straight again. The beautiful architecture of the vine, and all the hand labor that went into assisting it to its form, suddenly clarifies. The leaves change color almost immediately. Freed from the burden of photosynthesis, the vines secret their remaining sugars into their trunks and begin their preparations for the winter to come.

    By the time the leaves have fallen, the juice has fermented to wine. The vines grow dormant. The cool of winter steals into the winery and the second fermentation begins, the long malolactic that carries the wine safely through winter. A period of age, the careful tumult into the bottle—and someday to the table, where another end, and another beginning, awaits the wine-to-be.”

    ~ Jason Lett, The Eyrie Vineyards


    Filed under: — EyrieVineyards at 10:04 am on Tuesday, May 8, 2012

    On 5/8/12, as part of Oregon Public Broadcasting’s wonderful TV history series OREGON EXPERIENCE, OPB told the story of Oregon’s wine industry, and the quest for the perfect climate for American Pinot noir. Lots of footage of early Eyrie, David and Diana and family, along with our fellow Pinot Pioneers, way back when. This program will also air nationally later this year, date to be determined.

    OPB OREGON EXPERIENCE: “OREGON WINE, GRAPES OF PLACE” ……. Click here to watch online.

    “In the 1960s a new breed of pioneers began arriving in Oregon’s Willamette Valley determined to grow Vitis vinifera, the fine wine grapes of Europe. They were told it couldn’t be done and were amply warned that Western Oregon was too cold and wet for vinifera to flourish. But they came anyway, with a dream of producing fine premium wines – in particular Pinot noir, made from the delicate red grape of Burgundy, France. The pioneers’ risky experiment would create a new industry in Oregon and change the world of wine forever”.

    Click here to read more, Oregonian,

    Eyrie Vineyards on “The Splendid Table”, NPR

    Filed under: — EyrieVineyards at 10:10 pm on Sunday, November 15, 2009

    cheersHear about Oregon Pinot noir and The Eyrie Vineyards.

    In September 2008, just a few weeks before his death, David Lett and son Jason Lett were visited by Lynne Rossetto Kasper, and interviewed for “The Splendid Table”. The interview aired on National Public Radio on 9/21/08, and was repeated in September 2009. You can still hear it here. “A great tribute to family love and endeavor.”-NPR

    Click Here To Listen

    or go to The Splendid Table website:

    Epic Tasting, Eyrie Chardonnays, 1970 - 2007!

    Filed under: — EyrieVineyards at 10:52 pm on Friday, July 31, 2009

    CHarray On July 23, The Eyrie Vineyards presented a Chardonnay tasting of historic proportions. 38 Eyrie vintages were poured, from Eyrie’s (and the Willamette Valley’s) first vintage in 1970, to our most recent release, the 2007 Reserve. Members of the international wine media, Eyrie staff and crew, and a group of friends and supporters gathered to taste the Chardonnays of Eyrie’s founder, David Lett, and son Jason Lett, who took the helm at Eyrie in 2005.

    The reason for this Retrospective was, above all, to raise funds to benefit the young family of our cellarmaster, Julio Hernandez. Julio’s wife Lupe was suffering from renal failure, and needed a kidney transplant. Despite having insurance, the costs are monumental. Proceeds from the sale of Eyrie Reserve Chardonnays will go to help cover Lupe’s uninsured medical expenses. We hope you will join our efforts, and enjoy some unique and beautiful Chardonnays at the same time.


    To learn more about this event, and to read British wine authority Jancis Robinson’s tasting notes, go to “Eyrie Chardonnay Retrospective” at the bottom of the column to your right.

    “Castles In the Air” - Jason Lett speaks about David’s life, at Linfield Commencement

    Filed under: — EyrieVineyards at 10:44 pm on Tuesday, June 9, 2009

    David Lett, founder of The Eyrie Vineyards, was awarded an Honorary Doctor of Science degree by the faculty and trustees of Linfield College at Commencement ceremonies on May 31, 2009. The honor was given in recognition of David’s “visionary work to establish Oregon’s world-renowned wine industry”.

    Jason Lett accepted the posthumous degree on behalf of his father and family, and delivered the 2009 Linfield College commencement address “Castles in the Air”. The title of Jason’s address was based on a quotation from Henry David Thoreau, that David carried with him for 40 years: “If a man proceeds confidently in the direction of his dreams, and endeavors to live the life he has imagined, he will meet with success unexpected in the common hour….”



    Click here to see photo and summary at the Linfield website.

    Click here to see article in the McMinnville News-Register.

    Eyrie’s History

    Filed under: — EyrieVineyards at 1:51 pm on Monday, October 15, 2007

    David Lett David Lett planted the first Pinot noir vines in the Willamette Valley, in 1965. In 1966 and 1967,  David and his new bride, Diana, spent their honeymoon year transplanting and tending their new vineyard in the Red Hills of Dundee.  A few years later, Pinot noir from The Eyrie Vineyards earned the first international recognition for Oregon wines. In 2005, David and Diana Lett passed the Eyrie legacy to 2nd-generation winemaker Jason Lett. To learn more about The Eyrie Vineyards, please visit our About page.