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Oregon

The state in the northwest of the USA with its capital Salem is located on the Pacific coast between California and Washington, but its viticulture is very different from those two states. Oregon was settled relatively late by whites from 1834 onwards. Viticulture was established in the last third of the 19th century. Today Oregon is one of the largest and most important wine-growing states in the USA and is on a par with California. Oregon is also an important supplier of oak wood for American barrique barrels. European grape varieties were first introduced towards the end of the 19th century. After the decline of viticulture due to American Prohibition (1920-1933), mainly fruit and berry wines were produced thereafter for the time being. The pioneers of modern viticulture from the 1960s onwards are Richard Sommer with HillCrest Winery, Davit Lett with Eyrie Vineyards and Dick Erath with Erath Vineyards. Contrary to the prevailing opinion at the time and that of the University of California, they successfully ventured to rely fully on European varieties. Predestined are, for example, Chardonnay and Pinot Noir, of which special clones, the so-called Dijon clones from Burgundy, are in use. This successful approach was followed by many other committed winegrowers.

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