Two hands holding freshly picked grapes at harvest in a vineyard

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Best Wineries To Visit In And Near Hood River

Nestled in the breathtaking landscapes of the Columbia River Gorge, Hood River is a haven for wine connoisseurs seeking a taste of Oregon’s flourishing wine culture. With its fertile soils, ideal climate, and passionate winemakers, this region boasts diverse wineries offering unique tasting experiences. Although the area is known for it’s craft beer industry it is also famous for it’s wine production. Join us as we journey through the top Hood River wineries, where you can visit and experience top-notch tastings. 

Grape vines against the back drop of Mt Hood

The Pacific Northwest As A Wine Destination

Everyone knows about California wine country, including Napa Valley, Sonoma, and even the Santa Barbara area. But the Pacific Northwest is home to some of the world’s best wines. You may have visited the Willamette Valley and experienced top-level Pinot Noir and Chardonnay. Still, if you drive a little east, you will find the Mt. Hood region, home to some more exceptional wineries and vineyards. 

Looking for places to visit in Willamette Valley, check out my list of the Best Small Wineries Worth Visiting In Willamette Valley.

The Hood River area is an excellent destination for exploring wineries due to its unique microclimate conducive to grape growing. The region benefits from fertile soils, ample sunshine, and ideal temperature variations, producing high-quality grape cultivation. The area’s picturesque landscapes, including stunning views of Mount Hood and the Columbia River Gorge, also provide a scenic backdrop for wine-tasting experiences. With a diverse range of wineries offering varietals such as Pinot Noir, Chardonnay, and Riesling, visitors can enjoy a rich and flavorful wine tour experience in the Hood River area.

Exploring Oregon’s Columbia River Gorge?

If you are exploring Oregon’s famed Columbia River Gorge and the surrounding areas, check out these helpful posts from Fork & Wander:

Types Of Wine Will You Find In Hood River

The Hood River area is home to several American Viticultural Areas (AVAs), which contribute to its diverse wine scene. The Columbia Gorge AVA: Encompassing parts of both Oregon and Washington, this AVA includes the Hood River area. It is characterized by its unique microclimates, influenced by the Columbia River Gorge’s geography, which allows for the cultivation of a wide variety of grapes. Plus the Columbia Valley AVA: While not exclusively within the Hood River area, the Columbia Valley AVA extends into parts of Oregon and Washington, including some vineyards near Hood River. It is one of the largest AVAs in the United States and is known for producing diverse grape varietals.

The Columbia Gorge AVA and the Columbia Valley AVA are known for producing a diverse range of wine varietals thanks to their unique microclimates and terroir. Some of the types of wine produced in the Columbia Gorge AVA include:

  • Pinot Noir: This grape variety thrives in the cooler climate of the region, producing elegant and complex red wines with notes of red fruit, earthiness, and sometimes spice.
  • Chardonnay: Chardonnay grapes grown in the Columbia Gorge and Columbia Valley AVA benefit from the region’s moderate climate. 
  • Riesling: Riesling grapes thrive in the cooler, higher-elevation vineyard sites of the Columbia Gorge AVA. Wines made from Riesling grapes in this region often display vibrant acidity, floral aromas, and flavors ranging from citrus to stone fruit, with some exhibiting distinctive mineral notes.
  • Gewürztraminer: Gewürztraminer is well-suited to the cooler climate of the Columbia Gorge AVA. Wines made from Gewürztraminer grapes in this region are aromatic, with pronounced floral and spice notes and flavors of lychee, rose petals, and tropical fruits.
  • Syrah: Syrah grapes grown in the Columbia Gorge AVA benefit from the region’s varied terroir, resulting in wines with bold fruit flavors, spice, and savory notes. Depending on the vineyard site and winemaking techniques, Columbia Gorge Syrah can be medium- to full-bodied with moderate to high levels of tannins.
  • Cabernet Sauvignon: While less common than other varietals, Cabernet Sauvignon grapes are also grown in the Columbia Gorge AVA. This region’s wines typically exhibit ripe fruit flavors, firm tannins, and herbal notes with aging potential.

These are just a few examples of the types of wine produced in the Columbia Gorge AVA. The region’s diverse terroir and microclimates allow for cultivating a wide range of grape varietals, contributing to the AVA’s reputation for producing high-quality and distinctive wines.

Tips For Hood River Winery Tastings

  • First, plan with a reservation. It will make your tastings run more smoothly and prevent any hiccups. But many places do not require a reservation; unlike visits to wineries in Willamette and Sonoma, you can often just walk into tasting rooms in Hood River. 
  • Almost all tastings have a fee, so don’t think you can just pop in for complimentary tastings; those days are long gone. Sometimes, your fees will be waived when you purchase wine or join the wine club. 
  • Don’t expect large, lavish wineries in the Hood River area. These are smaller operations with tasting rooms and experiences, unlike those in Napa, Sonoma, or even Willamette.
  • Be responsible, have a designated driver, and drink responsibly. A good option is to join a wine tour of the best Hood River wineries and leave the driving to them.
Mt. Hood lavender field
Mt. Hood lavender field

The Hood River Area Wineries To Check Out

Cathedral Ridge Winery

Step into their welcoming tasting room overlooking the Columbia River and sample a range of wines, including Pinot Noir, Cabernet Sauvignon, and Riesling. Not only does Cathedral have a tasting room at the vineyard in Hood River, but you can also explore their wines at a tasting room in Dundee, in the Willamette Valley. Standard wine tastings are $20 per person, and a reserve tasting is $40 per person, both lasting 45 minutes. Tastings include a flight of six wines, which you can tailor to your preferences from over 30 varieties. Additional options include Barrel Tastings, which are much more immersive and last nearly 2 hours, or a Premier Private Tasting, lasting an hour.

Location: 4200 Post Canyon Dr, Hood River, OR 97031

Wy’East Vineyards

Explore their intimate tasting room and enjoy handcrafted wines like Chardonnay, Syrah, and Pinot Noir. Wy’East is a small family-owned winery. You can visit without a reservation. During the high season (spring, summer, fall), they are open daily from 11 to 5. They charge a $20 tasting fee, which includes 5 to 6 award-winning wines. The fee is waived with the purchase of 1 bottle. You can enjoy a bocce game while sipping a glass of wine.

Location: 3189 OR-35, Hood River, OR 97031

Marchesi Vineyards

Experience Italian varietals like Sangiovese and Barbera in their Tuscan-inspired tasting room. One of the more extensive operations in the Hood River area, Marchesi offers a tasting flight for $25 that can be enjoyed in either the newly expanded tasting room or the outdoor patio area. Reservations are not required, but it can get busy on the weekends, so it’s suggested you plan accordingly.

Location: 3955 Belmont Dr, Hood River, OR 97031

Phelps Creek Vineyards

Discover estate-grown Pinot Noir and Chardonnay wines in the renovated barn tasting room. In addition to the Pinot Noir and Chardonnay, Phelps Creek offers Rosé, Pinot Gris, and Gewürztraminer. Enjoy a creekside tasting in the newly renovated barn tasting room. A tasting flight of 5 wines costs $20 per person. The winery is open from 11-5 daily. Walk-ins are welcome, but if you have a group, they request a 48-hour notice. 

Location: 301 Country Club Rd, Hood River, OR 97031

Hood Crest Winery

Enjoy sustainable wines like Pinot Noir and Riesling in their cozy tasting room with vineyard views. This family-owned business produces not only wine but also spirits, from brandy to vodka and cabernet to pinot noir. Taste their products with a great view of Mt. Hood and the surrounding vineyards. Enjoy live music and wood-fired pizzas while you sip some wine.

Location: 1900 Orchard Rd, Hood River, OR 97031

Mt Hood Winery

Sample award-winning wines such as Pinot Gris and Syrah in their beautiful tasting room or outdoor patio. Come for the wine, stay for the views is their slogan. And the setting of this winery doesn’t disappoint. Step up to the 30-foot bar and enjoy tasting estate chardonnay, pinot noir rosé, and pinot noir. From March to November, tasting room hours run from 11 am to 5 pm. 

Location: 2882 Van Horn Dr, Hood River, OR 97031

The Pines 1852

Discover Bordeaux-style wines like Cabernet Sauvignon and Merlot in their rustic tasting room or outdoor terrace. The Pines tasting room is located in downtown Hood River, making it easy to visit if you are staying there. Closed on Tuesday and Wednesday, the hours vary during the week from 12-5 on Monday, 12-6 on Sunday, 12-7 on Saturday, and 12-9 on Friday (with live music in the evening). Check out the Secret Garden; it’s a vino and dog-friendly patio. 

Location: 415 Oak St, Hood River, OR 97031

Hiyu Wine Farm

Hiyu is more than a tasting room; it’s an experience. The approach to wine is unique and organic at this winery. The Wine Tavern offers tastings during the spring, summer and fall. But year-round, they offer lunch and dinner from Thursday to Sunday, and each is served with wine pairings. The meals celebrate the farm’s bounty and are authentic experiences in wine and food.

Location: 3890 Acree Dr, Hood River, OR 97031

Stave & Stone

This winery offers a beautifully situated tasting experience. From the tasting room to a covered patio and an outdoor Wine Garden, you have many options for enjoying their wines when you visit. The Wine Garden is adjacent to the lavender fields of the Hood River Lavender Farm and features live music and Mt. Hood views during the summer months. Tasting flights range from $10 to $30 a person, depending on the type of flight selected. 

Location: 3827 Fletcher Dr, Hood River, OR 97031

Gorge White House

From Heritage Pear Wine to Pinot Gris and Cabernet Sauvignon, The Gorge White House is a farm experience. It sells hard ciders, wine, fruit, and flowers (with a U-pick option) from a farm stand atmosphere. The tastings are much more casual. You can try hard cider or wine for $2.50 per taste, or you can do a single taste or a whole flight. 

Location: 2265 OR-35, Hood River, OR 97031

Additional winery options in the area, including tasting rooms and estate vineyards, include :

  • Naked Winery
  • Evoke Winery
  • Cascade Cliffs
  • Upsidedown Wine
Mt. Hood from Lost Lake

Hood River Is A Wine Destination

Embark on a wine-tasting adventure in Hood River and uncover Oregon wine country’s diverse flavors and stunning landscapes. From intimate tastings at boutique wineries to panoramic views overlooking the Columbia River, each destination offers a unique experience that will leave you longing to return. Many of these wineries can be part of a journey on the famed Hood River Fruit Loop, touring orchards and farms in the area. So gather your friends, raise a glass, and toast the joys of wine tasting in Hood River. Cheers!

Below are links and resources to help you plan The perfect trip

Travel Resources

  • HOTELS
    Booking.com and Expedia.com are great resources for accommodations around the world. Book almost any hotel directly from these links.
  • TOURS
    The best places to book tours and activities are Viator or Get Your Guide . From great food tours to guided hiking adventures to local walking tours, you will find great experiences to add to your travels here.
  • FOOD EXPERIENCES
    EatWith is a great resource for authentic culinary experiences with passionate locals worldwide. Connecting travelers with hosts in over 130 countries, providing unique, intimate, and immersive experiences in private homes and exclusive venues.
  • TRAINS
    Trainline is Europe’s leading train and coach app. They work with over 210 rail and coach companies to help their customers travel to thousands of destinations across 45 countries. 

The links above contain product affiliate links. We may receive a commission at no additional cost to you if you make a purchase after clicking on one of these links. But your support of Fork & Wander is greatly appreciated!

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