SALEM, Ore. — The Oregon Wine Board’s annual survey shows winemakers planted 2,400 more acres of grapes and opened 23 more wineries in 2016. Winemakers also reported a 12 percent sales increase — to $529 million.
The Capital Press newspaper reports (http://bit.ly/2eM4MPY ) the growth came despite a 6 percent drop in production.
Steve Thomson chairs the wine board and is CEO of Cristom Vineyards. He says winemakers have been concentrating on quality rather than quantity, and consumers remain willing to pay more for Oregon wine.
The Willamette Valley’s acclaimed Pinot noir remains king, accounting for 64 percent of the 30,435 acres of wine grapes grown in Oregon. But buyers can also find Chardonnay, Riesling, Pinot gris, Syrah, Zinfandel, Malbec, Merlot, Tempranillo and more.
The Southern Oregon University Research Center conducted the census. Among other statistics, the report showed Oregon now has 725 wineries, adding them at a pace of nearly two a month.
Information from: Capital Press, http://www.capitalpress.com/washington