: Bradley Vineyards

Sip Cool Climate Wines in Elkton

October 9, 2013 (Updated September 29, 2018)

You don’t have to be a sommelier to appreciate the unique wines of Elkton.

Located near the little town of Elkton in the Coast Range, the Elkton American Viticultural Area (AVA) is situated in the Umpqua Valley in Southern Oregon. It’s small — just 100 acres. And while Southern Oregon is best known for its hot, dry climate and wines best produced in such conditions — tempranillos, albariños and cabernets — Elkton differs.

“That’s exactly why we petitioned for a new AVA,” says Terry Brandborg, who owns Elkton-based Brandborg Vineyards with his wife Sue. “Our climate is significantly cooler than the rest of the Umpqua Valley.”

Brandborg says fog coming in from the Oregon Coast just 36 miles away and the breeze off the Umpqua River create a cooler, more temperate climate where pinot noir, pinot gris, gewerztraminer and riesling thrive.

A day trip to Elkton will bring you to all of the tasting rooms in the AVA: River’s Edge Winery, Brandborg Winery, Anindor VineyardsLexème Wines and Bradley Vineyards.

“It’s a hidden gem at this point and people will be pretty wowed by the wine we are making here,” Brandborg says.

Although Elkton is one of Oregon’s newer AVAs (designated in 2013), the wine-growing region actually dates back to the early 1970s when its first grape vines were planted.

While visiting Elkton, check out the beauty of the Umpqua River and take the Umpqua River Scenic Byway out to the coast. As a bonus for electric vehicle travelers, an EV charging station is located in downtown Elkton at Brandborg Winery this fall.

And when you’re ready to take a bottle of Oregon wine country home with you, remember that Oregon wines fly free on Alaska Airlines.

About The

Eileen Garvin
Eileen Garvin lives and writes in Hood River. When she’s not hunched over her keyboard or digging in the garden, you can find her mountain biking, kiteboarding, hiking, skiing or camping somewhere in Oregon.