Did you know that grape vines are deep rooted?
Within the first 3 years of planting a grape vine, the roots will push their way through hard ground, deep down into the earth searching for pure water. Once planted that grape vine is here to stay, the roots run deep.
Cliff Creek Wine is made from the harvest of our very own vineyard, Sams Valley Vineyard.
Sam’s Valley Vineyard is located just northeast of Gold Hill, Oregon. This is a family owned farm that has been farmed for many years by the Garvin Family. It was used to graze cattle and grow a variety of grasses, part of the 230 plus acres is still used for grass, hay and alfalfa.
We currently have close to 70 acres in grape production.
The truly wonderful thing about this small valley is that very little had to be done to the soil to prepare it to grow the big red varietals that we are so fond of. When we first started this adventure in 2000, we began by soil testing. When the consultants came out to take a look at our land – the first thing they saw was starthistle, believe it or not that was a positive sign. Their comments were, “if you can grow starthistle you can grow grapes.” Now if any of you know about starthistle, it is that awful sticky thorn that gets caught in everything. As we say, somehow it can even work itself into your underwear and manages to stick you.
Well, with that noted, the soil testing began. We waited a couple of weeks and when the test came back from the lab – guess what. We were ready to go. We didn’t need to add anything. Except for maybe a little fertilizer, this would help our little 2 year old plants get a good healthy start. Thus, the beginning of Sams Valley Vineyard.
The first planting consisted of 15 acres. Once my dad got planting in his system we were off ,and we put another 50 or so acres in the next year.
We now sit with 20 acres in Syrah, 20 acres in Cabernet Sauvignon and the rest divided among Cabernet Franc, Merlot and Sangiovese.
Some of our grapes are sold to other winemakers and the rest we reserve for the Cliff Creek label.
What is in the future for Sams Valley Vineyard? We see a lot more vines and a lot less starthistle.
As you can see the roots run deep at Sams Valley Vineyard. This piece of land has been farmed for over 100 years and farming has been in the Garvin Family since the late 1800’s.