Warrior’s Rest Vineyard

Warrior’s Rest Vineyard sits in Oregon’s Chehalem Valley, just west of Newberg and just south of the Chehalem Mountains.

The vineyard gets its name from its original owner, Louis Dare’, an Italian immigrant who purchased the property with his discharge pay from World War One in 1918. After leaving the US Army, Louis came to farm outside of the sleepy, Quaker, and dry (boooooo!), town of Newberg. His daughter Adelina was born and raised on the property, going to school for several years at what is now the neighboring “Old Schoolhouse” wedding venue but in her time was actually a schoolhouse and community hall. Adelina’s parents were both immigrants so she spoke exclusively Italian until she was old enough to go to the grade school in Newberg.

One of the first things Louis did as he started clearing trees was plant a row of grapes so that he could make wine in his barn. When Prohibition was passed, he still made wine, he just sent Adelina down to the road as a lookout and told her to come running if she saw anyone coming. In those days North Valley road was unpaved and may have seen one or two people go by a day. One of his vines is still alive today.

Man in a field
People standing in the field before the vineyard is planted

98 years after Louis Dare’ bought the land to clear trees and plant his dreams, we are doing the same. This was particularly poignant for me, as the Bellingar family hasn’t owned a farm since my Great Grandfather lost his farm on Wiser Lake in NW Washington during the Great Depression. (Well, lost isn’t really the right word. He always knew where it was, but the bank was very clear that he couldn’t keep it if he didn’t pay the mortgage.)

There are other “Warriors” at our vineyard: vines. In 2005 I got my first experience managing vineyards at Woodhall III, Oregon State University’s Research Vineyard. The vineyard is an amazing site: a beautiful southern exposure of Jory soils in the foothills of the Coast Range. I was very lucky to get the chance to be the student manager and work for Scott Robbins, a great mentor to me and many others in the vineyards, winery, and life in general. For my first vintage I was able to make wine from two rows of the clonal block. (Yes, Mom, I was 21!) This was the 1989 clonal trial with new clones from three areas of France: Colmar, Espiguette, and Dijon.

The clonal block was the first examples of those clones in the US. By 2005, they were wonderful old vines that, when blended, created our first vintage of Garagiste style wine for Bellingar Estates. In 2010, after years of budget cuts to higher education, OSU made the decision to pull the clonal block. You can understand where the university was coming from, but it felt like a betrayal to let those amazing, historic vines in the prime of their lives get pulled out of the ground. So I went down to OSU and “Liberated? Borrowed? Rescued? ” whole vines of each clone, moving them to my garden behind our house in Newberg. Now after a 7 year pit stop, these are more “Warriors” that have come to rest at Warrior’s Rest Vineyard.

With the first phase of planting in 2017, we are just beginning to release our very first vintages from the Warrior’s Rest Vineyard – delightfully fruity and complex Chardonnay and Pinot noirs!


24055 NE North Valley Rd, Newberg, OR 97132

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