Red Hill Douglas County AVA

Red Hill Douglas County AVA







about this subregion

The Red Hill Douglas County AVA, nestled in Oregon, is a unique and compact American Viticultural Area known for its singular vineyard. This vineyard is distinguished by its fertile volcanic soil, a legacy of the ancient uplifted seafloor that imparts a distinctive character to its wines. This small AVA is a part of the larger Umpqua Valley AVA and shares a regional identity with the Elkton Oregon AVA, highlighting its integral role in Oregon's diverse wine landscape.

Situated at coordinates 43°32′0″N 123°16′30″W, the vineyard's environment is shaped by its elevation ranging from 800 to 1,200 feet (approximately 245 to 365 meters). This elevation positions it uniquely within the Umpqua Valley, exposing it to cooler growing season temperatures due to the reduced influence of the Coast Range. This results in a distinct climatic profile that differs from the surrounding regions, characterized by a mild and relatively wet climate, fostering a frost-free growing season.

The Red Hill Douglas County AVA specializes in cultivating Pinot noir and Pinot gris, two grape varieties that thrive in its environment. The combination of the area's unique volcanic soil, its specific microclimate, and the careful cultivation practices contribute to the production of high-quality wines that express the distinct terroir of this Oregon AVA. These factors together define the Red Hill Douglas County AVA as a notable and specialized wine-producing region within Oregon's rich viticultural tapestry.


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Vineyard Hectares





Discover Terroir

The Red Hill Douglas County AVA is a notable wine region located in Oregon, United States. It shares its viticultural space with the Elkton Oregon AVA, together forming part of the broader Umpqua Valley AVA. The landscape of this AVA is distinguished by its rolling hills and undulating terrain, a defining feature that greatly influences the character of the wines produced here.

The gently rolling hills and varying elevations create a diverse mosaic of microclimates across the Red Hill Douglas County AVA. These conditions have proven ideal for grape cultivation, with vineyards thoughtfully positioned to maximize exposure to sunlight and airflow while benefiting from the well-drained volcanic soils that are abundant in the region.

In essence, the Red Hill Douglas County AVA offers a harmonious blend of natural beauty and viticultural opportunity. Its rolling hills, volcanic soils, proximity to the Umpqua River, and the influence of its captivating natural landscape all come together to create a wine region that is as visually stunning as it is viticulturally significant. Whether you are drawn to the allure of the vineyards or the breathtaking scenery, this Oregon wine region promises an enriching experience for all who venture here.

The climate of the Red Hill Douglas County AVA is characterized by its moderate and temperate nature. The region enjoys a maritime influence, thanks to its proximity to the Pacific Ocean, which plays a pivotal role in shaping the climatic conditions here. The summers are warm and sunny, with daytime temperatures fostering optimal grape ripening. However, the cool nights provide a necessary respite from the daytime heat, allowing the grapes to retain their natural acidity. This diurnal temperature variation is instrumental in achieving the desired balance in the grapes.

The growing season in this AVA benefits from a prolonged period of mild temperatures, which encourages slow and even ripening of the grapes. The maritime influence also brings about a moderating effect, preventing extreme temperature fluctuations that can be detrimental to grapevines. Additionally, the region experiences a good amount of sunshine, ensuring that grapes receive adequate sunlight for photosynthesis and flavor development.

Precipitation is generally well-distributed throughout the year, reducing the risk of water stress during the growing season. The volcanic soils in the area have excellent drainage properties, preventing waterlogging and enabling vine roots to access moisture as needed.

Overall, the climate of the Red Hill Douglas County AVA is a harmonious blend of warmth, cool nights, and consistent precipitation, creating an environment conducive to the cultivation of high-quality grapes. This climatic balance plays a crucial role in shaping the unique terroir of the region and contributes to the production of exceptional wines that reflect the character of this captivating Oregon wine region.

The volcanic soils in the Red Hill Douglas County AVA are a defining feature of this wine region's terroir. These soils are rich in mineral content, primarily derived from volcanic activity in the past. Over time, volcanic ash and lava have weathered into a variety of soil types, each contributing distinct characteristics to the vineyards.

In some areas, the soils are predominantly composed of volcanic clay, which provides excellent water retention properties. In contrast, other sections feature volcanic rock and gravel, ensuring efficient drainage. These diverse soil types within the AVA offer winemakers a range of options for grape cultivation, allowing them to select the most suitable plots for specific grape varieties.

The volcanic soils in the Red Hill Douglas County AVA impart unique mineral nuances to the grapes, adding complexity to the wines. They also contribute to the overall terroir of the region, resulting in wines with a pronounced sense of place. This combination of mineral-rich volcanic soils and favorable climatic conditions has established the Red Hill Douglas County AVA as a renowned area for the production of exceptional wines with a distinct and memorable character.


The Red Hill Douglas County AVA, nestled in the picturesque landscape of Oregon, is renowned for its ideal terroir for grape cultivation. This region's unique physical attributes, including its rolling hills, well-drained volcanic soils, and a climate moderated by the nearby Pacific Ocean, provide an exceptional environment for cultivating Pinot Noir and Pinot Gris grapes.

  1. Pinot Noir: Pinot Noir, a temperamental and highly revered grape variety, thrives in the Red Hill Douglas County AVA. This grape requires well-drained soils to prevent waterlogged roots, a condition that Red Hill's volcanic soils fulfill superbly. The region's relatively cool, maritime-influenced climate, characterized by warm days and cool nights during the growing season, allows for a slow ripening process. This gradual maturation is essential for achieving the desired balance of acidity, sugar, and phenolic ripeness in Pinot Noir grapes, which are known for their thin skins and susceptibility to disease. In this AVA, careful vineyard management and canopy control are essential to ensure optimal ripening conditions for Pinot Noir.
  2. Pinot Gris: Pinot Gris, a white grape variant of the Pinot family, also finds a welcoming home in the Red Hill Douglas County AVA. This grape variety thrives in a climate with moderate temperatures and ample sunlight, precisely the conditions provided by this region. Pinot Gris vines flourish in well-drained soils that allow for healthy root development and effective moisture regulation. The AVA's terroir, influenced by its proximity to the Pacific Ocean, ensures the gradual ripening of Pinot Gris grapes, preserving their natural acidity and delicate fruit flavors. Like Pinot Noir, diligent vineyard practices, including proper pruning and canopy management, are crucial for optimizing the quality of Pinot Gris in this region.

In summary, the Red Hill Douglas County AVA boasts an ideal physical setting for growing both Pinot Noir and Pinot Gris grapes. Pinot Noir benefits from its volcanic soils and a moderate, maritime climate, while Pinot Gris thrives in the region's well-drained soils and temperate weather conditions. These grape varieties have found a harmonious environment in this AVA, where careful agricultural practices and the unique terroir contribute to the production of exceptional wines that showcase the true essence of these grapes.

The Red Hill Douglas County AVA is renowned for producing a diverse range of exceptional wines, each characterized by its unique aromatic and flavor profile. Here, we introduce some of the most common wines from this region and delve into their distinct sensory attributes.

  1. Pinot Noir: Pinot Noir, the undisputed star of the Red Hill Douglas County AVA, is celebrated for its captivating aromas of red berries, cherries, and subtle floral notes. On the palate, these wines reveal a delicate balance of bright acidity, silky tannins, and flavors that range from red fruit, such as strawberries and raspberries, to more complex notes of earth, forest floor, and sometimes a hint of spice. The finish is often long and elegant, leaving a lingering impression of finesse and refinement.
  2. Pinot Gris: Pinot Gris wines from this region offer a refreshing and approachable aromatic profile. They typically exhibit aromas of ripe pear, green apple, and citrus zest, with underlying hints of white flowers. On the palate, Pinot Gris wines are characterized by their bright acidity and a crisp, clean finish. Flavors of orchard fruits, like apple and pear, dominate, often accompanied by subtle mineral nuances. These wines are known for their easy-drinking nature and versatility as a delightful accompaniment to a variety of dishes.

In conclusion, the wines of the Red Hill Douglas County AVA offer a diverse array of aromatic and flavor profiles, ensuring that wine enthusiasts can explore a wide spectrum of sensory experiences. Whether you're drawn to the elegance of Pinot Noir, the freshness of Pinot Gris, the complexity of Chardonnay, or the boldness of Tempranillo, this AVA has something to offer every palate.