Applegate Valley, Ore.: Weekender

Southern Oregon's Applegate Valley features fine wines, alpaca farms, and locally-grown cuisine.

Man walking dog on farm road in Applegate Valley, Oregon, image

Vast, oak-studded grounds make for restful rambling at Applegate Valley Ranch & Inn.

Alpaca at Caprice Winery, Applegate Valley, Ore., image

Enjoy a friendly, fluffy welcome at Applegate Valley's Caprice Winery.

Weasku Inn exterior, Applegate Valley, Ore., image

Settle in with a good book at the riverside Weasku Inn.

Pennington Farms' Cathy holding pie, Applegate Valley, Ore., image

Warm smiles and warm pie from Cathy of Pennington Farms.

Schmidt Family Vineyards tasting room, Applegate Valley, Ore., image

Daily tastings at Schmidt Family Vineyards might feature red bordeaux-style wines.

Pet an alpaca, sip a syrah or a white rhône, and sample farm-fresh fare in this winery-dotted region along the state’s southern border.

Area code is 541.

TO DO
Caprice Winery and Rolling Hills Alpaca Farm As owner Jeanne Davidian demonstrates spinning, you can sample the vintages—if you can tear yourself away from the alpacas. 970 Old Stage Rd., Central Point, 499-0449, capricevineyards.com. Summer Jo’s Chef Joy Cyr, famed for creating recipes from the restaurant’s on-site garden, now teaches cooking classes. 2315 Upper River Road Loop, Grants Pass, 476-6882, summerjos.com.

SIPS
Applegate Valley Wine Trail Since 2001, when the region got its appellation, wine buffs have snapped up its chardonnays, syrahs, cabernets, bordeaux blends, and rhône-style whites. applegatewinetrail.com. Schmidt Family Vineyards Gardens, fountains, and a pond provide a serene picnic setting. 330 Kubli Rd., Grants Pass, 846-9985, sfvineyards.com. Valley View Winery Intimate tastings at the region’s oldest winery. 1000 Upper Applegate Rd.,Jacksonville, 899-8468, valleyviewwinery.com.

EATS
Aja Restaurant Detour off I-5 for Aja’s fresh Pacific Rim menu. 118 NW E St., Grants Pass, 471-1228. Eve’s Garden Cafe & Tearoom Hearty, scone-centered breakfasts and decadent afternoon teas. 15090 Hwy. 238, Applegate, 846-9019. Troon Vineyard Its zins win gold, but the small-plates tasting menu here is the latest draw. 1475 Kubli Rd., Grants Pass, 846-9900, troonvineyard.com.

SHOPPING
Applegate Store and Cafe Try a burger in the café or stock up on picnic supplies from Annie Mac’s bakery in this eclectic country store. 15095 Hwy. 238, Applegate, 846-6659. Grants Pass Growers’ Market Saturdays 9 a.m.–1 p.m. Pick up fruits, vegetables, and more from local growers. Corner of SW Fourth and NW F streets (behind the post office), Grants Pass, gpgrowersmarket.blogspot.com. Pennington Farms Jams made from 38 acres of blueberries, olallieberries, and raspberries, plus vintage housewares and baked goods such as Applegate Valley Artisan Breads. 11341 Williams Hwy., Grants Pass, 846-0550, penningtonfarms.net. Saturday Artisan and Crafters Market 9 a.m.–2 p.m. Candles, jewelry, and other handmade items. NW Fifth Street between NW E and NW F streets, Grants Pass, grantspassartisanmarket.com.

SLEEPS
Applegate River Lodge From $110. A log cabin–style getaway with seven rooms and a vibrant restaurant/bar. 15100 Hwy. 238, Applegate, 846-6690, applegateriverlodge.com. Applegate Valley Ranch & Inn From $125. Five elegant rooms. From June through September, join the Thursday Night BBQ. 13100 N. Applegate Rd., Grants Pass, 846-0353, applegatevalleyinn.com. Weasku Inn From $179 for AAA members. Modern touches such as Jacuzzi tubs enhance this cozy retreat. 5560 Rogue River Hwy., Grants Pass, 471-8000, weasku.com.

GET GOING
Request the Oregon & Washington TourBook and map at AAA.com or any AAA branch. For more info, contact the Jacksonville Chamber of Commerce: 185 N. Oregon St., 899-8118, jacksonvilleoregon.org.

Photography by David Zaitz

This article was first published in May 2011. Some facts may have aged gracelessly. Please call ahead to verify information.

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