Traveling with children in Oregon Wine Country
Children don’t necessarily jump to mind when most people are considering a proper wine tasting route. Yet, unbeknownst to many, there are plenty of kid-friendly wineries in the heart of Oregon’s Mid-Willamette Valley.
One of the most approachable labels out there, Airlie is like a wonderful welcome mat for the wine enthusiast in Monmouth, Oregon. Plus, it’s all-welcoming and looks forward to the presence of your kids and dogs. Adults can enjoy tasting refreshing whites like Riesling, Gewurztraminer and Pinot Blanc, and the littles will appreciate wandering the estate. You’ll find something new each and every time you visit.
Left Coast Estate
Left Coast Estate, in Rickreall, Oregon, embodies the best of both worlds. On the one hand, they make solid wine, like a refreshing Rose and an amazingly-balanced Chardonnay. But it also features an extra-laid-back atmosphere with wood-fired pizzas and amazing views that will appeal to every parent.
Lady Hill Winery
The winery is situated on a pastoral and sprawling property in St. Paul, Oregon, that dates back to the mid-19th century. While at the estate, enjoy an expansive array of wines made from fruit grown on both sides of the Columbia River. As an added bonus, Champoeg State Park is next door and the perfect venue for an afternoon outdoors and on the shore of the river.
Cubanisimo Vineyards, in Salem, Oregon, has made a case for its unique combo of New World wines and Latin flair. The Cuban theme extends into the all-ages realm, with kids being treated to classic domino games as well as water and plantain chips. That way, they’re not empty handed as the adults work their way through the tasting flight. The rural Salem winery also hosts family-friendly movie nights in the summer.
Stoller Family Estate
It’s tough to visit Stoller Family Estate, in Dayton, Oregon, and not dash into the nearby fields. Your kids will surely want to, and mostly can on this extensive, beautiful estate. Enjoy fantastic Pinot Noir and Chardonnay as your kids explore the frisbee golf course, tire swing and many nooks and outlets of this amazing estate. There’s so much to explore that you could easily spend an entire afternoon here. If you feel like a change of pace though, head over to the nearby Wings and Waves Waterpark for a family-friendly wine country intermission.
On top of having some of the best Riesling and Pinot Noir in the land, Brooks Wines has fun for the whole family in Amity, Oregon. The winery touts games for children as well as refreshing servings of lemonade. Resident chickens can be fed and when the weather is warm and the estate garden is full of strawberries, families can explore the grounds and gather fruit.
Bonus Stop: Benedictine Brewery
For a detour from your wine wanderings, head over to Benedictine Brewery in Mt. Angel, Oregon. It’s home to some of the best monk-made beer in all the land. Kids are welcome, there’s plenty to explore and the monks are often both brewing and pouring. Put it on your bucket list.