Inspired by trips to Europe where the "wine and food spoke", David and Ginny Adelsheim first planted a 15 acre site in the north Willamette Valley in 1972 with Pinot Noir, Chardonnay, Riesling and passion.
Adelsheim is amongst the region’s founders. The couple shared a dream with a handful of families that Oregon’s climate and land could one day produce serious wines. In 1978, the first commercial wines were produced. Over the next four decades, Adelsheim Vineyard has grown up with Oregon’s wine industry. Winemaker Dave Paige joined in 2001 and now oversees the gravity-fed winery, and viticulturist Chad Vargas ensures the vineyards go beyond the region’s strict sustainability program.
Adelsheim’s estate vineyards and its winery have been certified sustainable by LIVE (Low Input Viticulture and Enology) – one of the world’s highest standards for sustainable viticulture – since the beginning of the programme in 2008. LIVE is research-based and examines every aspect of a vineyard or winery to determine its actual impact on the sustainability of the earth. While use of some pesticides is allowed under the LIVE program (when such compounds have less impact on sustainability than things like sulphur), Adelsheim stopped use of all herbicides (including glyphosate) in 2016.
To reduce its reliance upon fossil fuels, Adelsheim has installed solar panels that now generate over 25% of the electricity used by the winery and it has purchased a new electric forklift truck to replace an older one which burned propane. The estate is also certified by Salmon Safe which partners with farms, vineyards, craft breweries, corporate and university campuses in the Pacific Northwest to develop and implement practices that maintain water quality, watershed health, and restore salmon habitat.
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