Our Vineyards

The Northern Willamette Valley provides a moderate climate, soils and sites ideal for the culture of noble cool climate wine varietals. The Ponzi family's own vineyards and those under their management provide 130 acres of vines featuring a variety of elevations, exposures and soil types. The different sites express distinctive territory and micro-climates. These differences, combined with knowledgeable varietal and clonal selections, are the determinants of the overall expression of varietal flavors, character and ultimate wine structure.

Ponzi Vineyards is strictly committed to respecting the integrity of each vineyard, enhancing and maintaining their individual characteristics. The artistry and signature of Ponzi wines is in the blending of distinct cuvées from these vineyards. All Ponzi-owned vineyards are site-selected, hand-planted and managed by the family and their vineyard manager.


Estate Vineyard
ELEVATION: 100-200 feet
EXPOSURE: Southeast
SOIL: Hillsboro Loam
The own-rooted vines of the 12-acre Estate Vineyard, which appear on our label, were planted in 1969. The now gnarled old vines exhibit some of Oregon's first plantings of Pinot noir, Pinot gris, Chardonnay and Riesling. Situated in close proximity to metropolitan Portland, the historic Estate Vineyard remains in full production on the original winery premises.


Abetina and Mardona Vineyards

ELEVATION: 400-500 feet
EXPOSURE: Southeast
SOIL: Laurelwood
Abetina is our vineyard gem - planted with over 20 Pinot Noir clones, making it truly unlike any other in Oregon. The site was planted as part of the original Oregon Clonal Test in 1975. Whether it is the soil, site, age or clonal diversity, Abetina consistently produces the most intensely flavored, elegantly nuanced grapes of all the vineyards. Abetina contributes the soupçon of dynamic, stylistic character to Ponzi Pinot Noir Reserve each vintage. It is selected for a single-vineyard designate bottling in only the finest vintages.

ELEVATION: 300-450 feet
EXPOSURE: Southeast
SOIL: Laurelwood
Madrona is a ten-acre site, beginning on the South perimeter of Abetina. Its Pinot Noir vines, like Abetina, show tremendous fruit consistently year after year and are selected for the Reserve and signature blends.


Aurora Vineyard

PLANTED: 1991-2006
ELEVATION: 300-600 feet
EXPOSURE: Southeast
SOIL: Laurelwood
With a direct east-facing view toward the sunrise over snow-capped Mt. Hood, Aurora Vineyard is located atop a Chehalem Mountains slop. The 80-acre vineyard offers an array of southeast-facing slopes and crowns, some perfect for Pinot Noir, others for white grape varieties. Aurora is the site of numerous viticultural experiments, including clonal and rootstock research. Additionally, it is home to many Dijon clones of Chardonnay, Pinot Blanc and rare Italian varietals Arneis and Dolcetto.


Avellana Vineyard

PLANTED: 2006-2014
ELEVATION: 340-800 feet
EXPOSURE: Southeast
SOIL: Laurelwood
Acquired and planted in 2006, Avellana Vineyard's 25 acres sit on a hillside with panoramic views offering sightlines to all Ponzi properties in the Chehalem Mountains AVA. The Pinot noir blocks are planted clonal massale, an innovative technique with 25 different Pommard and heirloom clones planted at random, side-by-side. The Ponzi winery and tasting room were built on the same slope. Avellana is named for the Filbert orchards originally farmed at this site.

An American Viticultural Area, AVA, is a federally approved area defined by geographic features and specific boundaries. In 2001, the large number of Oregon wineries created a need to more specifically inform consumers on the origin of their wines. The Chehalem Mountains AVA was created in 2007. All Ponzi vineyards, with the exception of the original Estate Vineyard, are situated on the North slope of this appellation.

The soil classification in the Chehalem Mountains AVA is exclusively Laurelwood; composed of basalt base with ice age windblown sedimentary soils. The family feels it is superb for the cultivation of Pinot noir and other cool climate varietals.

With more than 40 years of farming experience, Winemaker Luisa Ponzi now plants all Ponzi Pinot noir blocks “clonal massale;” a term she developed to define the planting of several dozen clones in a single block. These clones are specially selected for the site and, rather than being placed in an organized fashion, are unsystematically planted like wildflowers. This method allows the clones to compensate for each other, producing consistent wines of distinct quality and superior complexity, despite vintage variability. Currently, Ponzi’s Avellana Vineyard and the Abetina 2 block at Aurora Vineyard are planted in this way.

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The Ponzi Family is committed to maintaining and constantly improving the health of their vineyards, the vineyard workers and the environment.

LIVE - In 2000, Ponzi Vineyards was certified by LIVE, the Oregon program for Low Input Viticulture and Enology. The certification recognizes compliance with specific sustainable agricultural practices and products. In 2008, the new Ponzi Vineyards winery, Collina del Sogno, became one of the first Oregon wineries to be recognized as LIVE Certified Sustainable.

¡Salud! - Ponzi Vineyards is a founding member of ¡Salud! Oregon Pinot Noir Auction established in 1992. Wineries and a hospital located in the wine country collaborate to present the annual auction of exclusive Pinot Noir cuvées. All proceeds are directed to providing comprehensive health services, including dental, to seasonal vineyard workers and their families.

CRC - As a member of the Carbon Reduction Challenge, Ponzi Vineyards is accountable for and actively working toward reducing emissions. The CRC seeks to enlist and inspire businesses to measure and progressively reduce greenhouse gases through a commitment to transparent and verifiable certification and to inform consumers that they can support companies that protect and restore our climate.

Download Sustainable Practices PDF

Ponzi Vineyards maintains long-term contracts with some of the finest grape growers in the Willamette Valley. Each of these vineyards produces fruit with special qualities and characteristics.

Alloro Vineyards - Owner: David Nemarnik
Certification: LIVE, Salmon Safe
Varietals: Pinot Noir, Muscat, Riesling

Dion Vineyards - Owner: Ron and Joanne Johnson
Certification: LIVE, Salmon Safe
Varietals: Pinot Gris, Chardonnay, Pinot Noir

Gemini Vineyards - Owner: Dale Hatfield
Certification: LIVE, Salmon Safe
Varietals: Pinot Gris, Pinot Noir

Gran Moraine - Owner: Premier Pacific Vineyards
Certification: LIVE, Salmon Safe
Varietals: Pinot Noir, Chardonnay

Lazy River Vineyard - Owner: Ned and Kirsten Lumpkin
Certification: LIVE, Salmon Safe
Varietals: Pinot Gris, Riesling, Pinot Noir

 Linda Vista - Owner: Patricia Eiting
Certification: LIVE, Salmon Safe
Varietals: Pinot Gris, Pinot Noir

Thistle Vineyards - Owner: Jon and Laura Jennison
Certification: Oregon Tilth Certified Organic
Varietals: Pinot Blanc, Chardonnay

Wahle Vineyards - Owner: Mark Wahle
Certification: Practice Sustainable Farming
Varietals: Pinot Noir

Zena Crown (West) - Owner: Premier Pacific Vineyards
Certification: LIVE, Salmon Safe
Varietals: Pinot Noir

Zenith Vineyard - Owner: The Ramey Family and St. Innocent
Certification: LIVE, Salmon Safe
Varietals: Pinot Noir