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Laurel Ridge Winery

Laurel Ridge Winery Laurel Ridge Winery was incorporated on July 17, 1986. What led up to that is the following set of events: David Teppola purchased a 250-acre farm in 1974. At the time of its purchase, David envisioned planting a vineyard and the name of the farm became Finn Hill Vineyard. At about the same time, David became an investor in Charles Coury Vineyards, which was on David Hill Road, outside of Forest Grove, Oregon. David planned to grow grapes at Finn Hill Vineyard that would be used in the production of wines at Coury Vineyards. Charles Coury had an undergraduate degree in climatology. He did his graduate work in viticulture at the University of California at Davis. His master’s thesis was about cool climate viticultural regions suitable for growing Pinot Noir grapes. Based on his background in climatology, he identified the Willamette Valley as one of the few places in the world suitable to production of Pinot Noir and other varieties that enjoy a climate cooler than what California had to offer. Hence, David intended to plant grapes that would do well on his site. In the meantime, Charles Coury proved to be a genius at identifying the right location, but not at running a business. When he was unable to operate Coury Vineyards at a profit, David liquidated it for him. By then it was 1979. David and Susan planted the vineyard on their farm in 1980. It was planted to Reisling, Pinot Noir, and Sauvignon Blanc. The question became what to do with the grapes when the crop matured three or four years down the line. David continued to manage Charles Coury’s old vineyard for the owner of it, who at that time was the bank. Later the Coury property was sold to Mike and Kay Dowsett. David assisted them in their transition into becoming owners and managers of the Coury vineyard. Over time a relationship developed and by 1986, along with Helmut and Lilo Wetzel, the Dowsetts and the Teppolas incorporated Reuter’s Hill Winery, Inc. dba Laurel Ridge Winery. (The name Reuter’s Hill Winery, Inc. was chosen as the foundational name because the site had been a vineyard and winery going back to the 1800’s, before Prohibition. Reuter was the name of the German family that first planted grapes on that site. It is one of the oldest vineyard sites ever identified.) With two vineyards to support it, the old Coury Vineyard, and Finn Hill Vineyard, the winery flourished. Over time, David and Susan bought out the Dowsetts and the Wetzells. (The Wetzells currently own Chateau Bianca, a winery west of Salem.) David continued to grow grapes at Finn Hill Vineyard and take them to Forest Grove for processing at Laurel Ridge Winery.


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13301 NE Kuehne Road, Carlton, OR, US, 97111 Email:
Phone: 503-852-7050 Web:
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