"Wine Region of the Year"? You Bet.

Yamhill County Vineyards by Patrick MorganA major wine website has selected Oregon as its 2013 "Region of the Year," recognizing the high-quality growing conditions, and winemaking expertise, that our state has fostered. Not just the Willamette Valley. The whole state.

"I can't think of another region that is producing such a compelling collection of pure, vibrant, varietally correct wines that excite the palate and please the pocketbook," Snooth‚Äč's Gregory Dal Piaz writes, going on to praise standouts like pinot noir and chardonnay from the Willamette Valley, and riesling, albarino and tempranillo from the Rogue Valley and Umpqua River regions in Southern Oregon. 

Today we are celebrating Oregon’s diversity and their emergence in particular as the country’s top source for white wines," Dal Piaz notes, writing that although Oregon's pinot noirs are especially famous, it's the entire spectrum of wines that makes it such a standout place.

Oregon's farmland protections and limited sprawl have been key factors in the success of its globally-acclaimed wine industry. That's one reason we put Yamhill County's vineyards on our Land Use Trail.

1000 Friends is proud to have helped protect the lands where these grapes grow, and we continue to seek the right balance in wine country that will foster further innovation and, of course, great wine!

If you love Oregon wine, you care about land use. To stand with us in protecting Oregon farmland, consider a gift through the 2013 Willamette Week Give!Guide. One great incentive this year--free tastings and a private tour from Yamhill County's Winter's Hill Vineyard. Learn more and give through December 31 here.

Photo credit: Patrick Morgan, via Flickr. Creative Commons.