About Klickitat Canyon Winery

Klickitat Canyon Winery is a small, family-run farm that creates organic, natural foods. Due to our topography and geography, we are best suited for a diversity of products. In our lower acreage, we grow fruit trees and vegetables. We use dry-farming practices to encourage seasonal effects and water conservation. Livestock provide the soil amendments we use for plant nutrients. Crop rotations and intercropping are our main efforts to reduce pest pressure. Allowing harvestable weeds to grow in our beds gives us extra potential and reduces damage to our main crops.

In our upper acreage we preserve habitat by means of oak woodland silvopasture and rotational grazing. Restoring habitat that was degraded by cattle and focusing on drought-tolerant native forage for livestock. These practices encourage biodiversity and create an environment that is healthier for all life. Our wines and vinegars benefit from this system as a unique signature of yeast is allowed to thrive in these conditions. Our wines are processed entirely by hand to reflect the true character of the Columbia Gorge Appellation.

At Klickitat Canyon Winery, we let the grapes make the wine – thus we use the natural yeasts found on the grapes and do not add any sulfites or other chemicals. The wine is permitted to develop on its own merits and is fermented completely to dryness before it is bottled. This process produces complex unfiltered wines that will please and surprise you.

Our vinegars are produced entirely from scratch using grapes and apples. We age many of them in oak barrels for several years before infusing them with fresh fruits and herbs. We grow much of this ourselves and support other local farms in the process.

“Where the Grapes Speak for Themselves”

Family in Meadowlark Vineyard at sunset with lupine blooming
our vineyard

Our Vineyard

We farm our vineyard using a method we’ve developed and named eco-dynamic agriculture. By reintroducing the native wildflowers and bunch grasses between the rows and around the periphery, we strive to increase biodiversity as much as possible. As a result, our vineyard has become a continuation of the surrounding environment. We think of it as a form of agricultural habitat restoration.

In addition, we integrate livestock into the system to amend our soils and diversify our agricultural production. The biodiversity of the system creates an abundance of nutrition for our livestock and promotes pasture health. In areas where we have not planted vines, we are developing an agroforestry system to restore native habitat and identify more ecodynamic agriculture techniques for silvopasture systems.

“Making wine I have come to realize that each barrel holds an entire universe of life within it. When you drink our wine, know that the living being and the energy it contains are being transferred to you. We made it this way so that it would reflect our passion and bring you life.”

Kiva Dobson

Meadowlark Gold white wine grapes - Klickitat Canyon Winery

Natural Wine-making

We produce completely natural wines. By this we mean nothing is added to our wines as they are manually stomped and allowed to ferment in oak barrels. Our fermentation differs from most other winemaking processes in that we do not use any sulfites, clarifying agents, filters, or even any added yeasts. The living organisms contained in the environment are the vessels for our fermentation. Thus, the care that is taken on the land is a very important factor in our process.

Typically, this process takes longer and our wines age one year for whites and up to three years for reds, depending on the readiness we deem through a barrel tasting. The wines are aged on their lees for several months through the first winter. This can be a dormancy period after a lively fermentation. In spring, the yeast re-activate and continue the process. When ready, we bottle the wines and label each of them by hand. It takes a lot of patience to wait for Mother Nature, but we think the result is worth it.

Additionally, in the Columbia River Gorge, the grapes tend to have high acidity, which allows for the wine to age and keep for long periods of time. Many of our wines takes years aging in bottle before they reach their prime.

Our philosophy is that nature provides all we need to make a delicious wine, true to where we live. Thus, our wines are vegan (without egg white or fish bladder clarifiers) and made in a way that reflects the true character of the Columbia Gorge Appellation and all its intricacies. Nothing added, nothing taken out ~ Nothing but the grapes.

Meet our team

Robin Dobson

Founder

Kiva Dobson-Huerta

Vintner

Jazmin Dobson-Huerta

Apprentice Vintner

Avenelle and Janaila

Apprentice Vintners~in training