Willamette Valley AVA
Embracing a family winegrowing and winemaking legacy in Oregon's Dundee Hills, Knudsen Vineyards crafts small-lot Pinot Noir.
Knudsen Vineyards is an iconic vineyard in the heart of the acclaimed Dundee Hills AVA, overlooking Oregon's fertile Willamette Valley, the majestic Mt. Hood, and the North Cascade mountain range. Since 1971, the Knudsen Family has been growing grapes and making wine in this breathtakingly beautiful setting, where premium Pinot Noir and Chardonnay capture the essence of land's distinctive terroir.
It all started when Cal Knudsen, a timber executive and Oregon wine pioneer, purchased a 200-acre former walnut orchard with his wife Julia Lee in Oregon's Dundee Hills. Cal had fallen in love with the world-renowned wines of Burgundy and Champagne and he was convinced that Oregon's north Willamette Valley - with its similar climate, topography, and sedimentary soils - could produce still and sparkling wines of great quality.
At that time, in 1971, Oregon's wine industry was embryonic and when Cal and Julia Lee Knudsen planted 30 acres of vines the following year, it became the largest vineyard in the Willamette Valley. A few years later, the Knudsens and pioneering Oregon winemaker Dick Erath formed Knudsen Erath Winery and built the first commercial winery in the Dundee Hills. For more than a decade thereafter, Knudsen Erath Winery produced Pinot Noir, Chardonnay, Riesling, and sparkling wines.
The partnership of Knudsen Erath ended in 1987 and the Knudsen family began a twenty-five year hiatus from family winemaking. In the meantime, they invested in Argyle Winery to produce high quality sparkling and still wines, and they continue to have a long-term grape supply and vineyard management relationship with the winery today.
In 2012, the Knudsen family's second generation (Cal and Julia Lee's children), Page, Colin, David, and Cal Jr., decided to embrace their family's legacy and honor their parents by reviving the family winemaking tradition and establishing a winery operation under the historic Knudsen Vineyards label. It is their goal to produce exceptional quality, distinctive Pinot Noir and Chardonnay wines from their own sustainably farmed vineyard in Oregon's Dundee Hills AVA.
Each of the Knudsen siblings are directly involved with the winery, making it a true family affair. Page is the Managing Partner of Knudsen Vineyards and has led the family's return to winemaking. She oversees the management of Knudsen Vineyards and the winery and she is deeply committed to supporting and promoting Oregon's wine industry. Colin oversees the financial, marketing and strategy aspects of the business, while David and Cal Jr. are engaged in oversight of all operations.
The Knudsen siblings are joined by Winemaker Nate Klostermann, who is also the Head Winemaker for Argyle Winery. Nate was born in Wisconsin and after getting a taste of the industry at Falconer Vineyards along the Mississippi River in Red Wing, Minnesota, he knew this was what he wanted to do. He moved out to Dundee, Oregon and started as a harvest intern for Argyle Winery in 2005, and after several promotions, was named their Head Winemaker in 2013, a position he still holds today. At Knudsen Vineyards, Nate is dedicated to capturing the richness and complexity of the estate fruit and making wines that truly reflect the unique attributes of this special property.
It is with great pleasure that we introduce our Pinot Noir Wine Club members to Knudsen Vineyards, a historic label that has crafted premium Pinot Noir since its inception. Cheers!