Don and Wendy Lange moved to Dundee from Santa Barbara and planted thirty acres of Pinot Noir, Chardonnay and Pinot Gris in 1987, establishing Lange Estate. Don graduated from the University of Iowa Writer’s Workshop with a Master of Fine Arts degree and then pursued a career as a musician, winning a grant from the National Endowment for the Arts before becoming a winemaker. Jesse Lange, Don’s son, joined the winemaking team in 2004 and Don’s wife, Wendy, oversees the business side of the winery. Today, the Lange family owns 60 acres of land on three properties in Dundee Hills of which 45 acres are planted to vine. They purchased the Dundee Hills vineyards, Mia Block (2003) and Redside (2006) to complement their original estate vineyard. The vineyards are planted on well-draining, deep volcanic Jory and Nekia soils. The Lange’s specialize in Pinot Noir, Chardonnay and Pinot Gris. The latter variety is of particular significance as Don was the fourth to plant Pinot Gris in the Willamette Valley and the first to release a barrel fermented reserve. The wine is still produced today and is considered a benchmark for the varietal in Oregon. Pinot Noir Pommard and Wadenswil clones, now in its third decade, are planted on their own roots. The Langes follow a non-interventionist approach to winemaking gentle handling of the grapes, no extended pre- or post-fermentation maceration, no dry ice, and minimal use of sulfur dioxide. Additional fruit is purchased from growers in the surrounding appellations. Their long-standing relationships with these growers have allowed the winery to establish a reputation for consistency in their wines. The winery is certified by Low Impact Viticulture and Enology (LIVE). In 2012, Lange Estate Winery and Vineyards was named Winery of the Year by Wine & Spirits Magazine
|Twenty-five years ago, Don and Wendy Lange founded their winery in the Dundee Hills of Oregon’s northern Willamette Valley. The year 1987 marked the Langes’ first vintage and consisted of the three varietals they embrace today: Pinot Noir, Pinot Gris, and Chardonnay.
New-world pioneers in the production of Pinot Gris, Lange Estate was the first to release a barrel-fermented reserve-an effort Matt Kramer of the WINE SPECTATOR calls “a bench-mark bottling.” Don Lange’s work as a winemaker has been termed “brilliant” by Hugh Johnson, and the WINE ENTHUSIAST proclaimed Lange Estate to be “one of the great Pinot Noir producers in the United States.”
Lange Estate is known for crafting beautifully balanced wines from fruit grown on the winery Estate, located in the heart of the prestigious Dundee Hills appellation. To further supplement our case production, the Langes purchase additional fruit from the best vineyards in the surrounding area. Long-standing relationships with these blue-ribbon sites have helped the winery establish a well-deserved reputation for consistency and complexity in the wines.
Jesse Lange, Don’s son, joined the winemaking team in 2004, continuing the legacy of Lange Estate. Jesse also holds the title of General Manager and serves on several industry boards including: President of Oregon Pinot Camp, former President of the Dundee Hills Winegrowers Association, and the Willamette Valley Wineries Association. Currently, the father/son duo bottles six different Pinot Noirs, focusing on terroir through small lot, artisinal wine-making philosophies. Lange Estate sets the standard for truly hand-crafted wines.
While overseeing one of the most picturesque tasting rooms in Oregon, Wendy Lange tends to the day-to-day business of the winery, the grounds, and the resident canine corps. With panoramic views of the Cascade Mountain Range and two valleys, a visit to Lange Estate Winery is an experience you don’t want to miss.