Destination Weddings in Willamette Valley
All you need to know about weddings in Willamette Valley.
CEREMONY AND RECEPTION SITES
Black Walnut Inn & Vineyard
Looking for luxury? Black Walnut Inn, hands down, provides the most well-appointed, elegant and thoughtful experience when it comes to Valley accommodations. Replete with antiques, high thread counts and a delectable gourmet breakfast, brides who want that certain J.Crew-meets-Napa vibe will be in heaven. With 42 acres of forested rolling hills, orchards and even a few vines, the Black Walnut Inn has plenty of outdoor space, but offers indoor options—including the wine cellar.
Red Ridge Farms
Cross out the decorating line on your wedding expense spreadsheet—there’s no need for that at this family-owned herb and specialty plant nursery in Dayton. “It’s a garden paradise in the middle of wine country with lavender fields and sweeping vineyards,” says events coordinator Taylor Brisbin. Host an intimate event on the Red Ridge patio overlooking their formal gardens, or take over the brand-new Oregon Olive Mill Building. The space has just about everything an Oregon bride would want: a large, high-ceilinged open room, one wall made completely of French doors that open onto a heated deck (the heaters are built into the wood beams—no bulky heater towers here!), overlooking an olive grove and the aforementioned lavender fields. Can it get any better? Yes, it can. On a clear day there’s a pristine view of Mt. Hood.
David Hill Winery
Helpful and laid back is the vibe at this vineyard. The folks at David Hill are adaptable to the details of your day, which makes for what we like to call a “choose your own adventure” wedding. “Brides truly appreciate the flexibility,” says events manager Michele Andrich. The vines, gardens and adorably historic yellow farmhouse naturally create an atmosphere that is beautiful yet peaceful; Michele wants the conditions for the bride and groom to reflect that serenity.
Youngberg Hill Vineyards & Inn
Yes, Youngberg Hill has fabulous organic wine. But its special location—it sits atop a mountain overlooking nearby McMinnville—prompted owners/operators/winemakers Nicolette and Wayne Bailey to build a beautiful cedar-shake Inn filled with seven rooms. In our opinion, Youngberg Hill Inn is the most central accommodation in the Valley, so we recommend this locale for a destination wedding spot. As Nicolette describes it, “Youngberg Hill provides the perfect location combining a romantic wedding in a phenomenal vineyard setting…and the warmth of the luxurious Inn.” Kind of like peanut butter and chocolate, if we do say so ourselves.
E lk Cove Vineyards
Elk Cove’s family owned and operated estate is situated to marvel at their vineyard and the Willamette Valley coastal range. That picturesque view can be savored from the patio of the Roosevelt Room, Elk Cove’s 2,500 square foot event facility. Want an outside wedding? Outdoors, guests can sit amphitheater-style amidst lush vines, overlooking the gazebo below where you’ll trade your vows.
The combination of Zenith Vineyard’s lovely green acreage with the indoor space’s vaulted ceilings and chandelier glow is like…well, like getting married in the old country. You know, in the European countryside at a refurbished barn with a reflective pool. A wedding here would make for an exquisite evening soiree—we see you wearing a Valentino gown, dripping with jewels. (Are we getting carried away? Sorry.)
Springbrook Hazelnut Farms
This charming hideaway was given a “four-kiss” rating by the web site “Best Places to Kiss in the Northwest.” If that isn’t enough to convince you, imagine a 7,000 square foot mansion with a carriage house and garden cottage surrounded by Hazelnut orchards and formal gardens. You’ll feel like royalty in a bridal gown with your crown prince beside you. Voila!
Imagine having a cozy, intimate wedding in the great room of your brand-new bungalow with 20-foot ceilings, a fireplace and a veranda overlooking historic vines. Well, don’t imagine: We’ve just described the Vineyard Home at Ponzi Vineyards. The venue can only hold about 50 of your best friends, but per-person prices include Ponzi wines; fresh, seasonal Willamette Valley food from the area’s famous Dundee Bistro (also owned by the Ponzi family), and fresh flower arrangements. Yum.
Willamette Valley Vineyards
Willamette Valley Vineyards is the largest and most successful winery in the state—it’s even publicly traded. However, they still manage to provide personal service along with a range of banquet rooms (all with their own ambience) and an outdoor garden overlooking the vineyard hills. Bonus: Willamette Valley Vineyards works exclusively with Willaby’s Catering, Oregon Bride’s winner for best caterer in 2007!
CATERING & CAKES
Partner and Olympia native Jason Stoller Smith heads up the kitchen at Dundee Bistro, bringing his Northwest upbringing to the table with his deft skillet. Using local ingredients, he’ll cater your wedding meal with specialties like Muscovy duck confit and chèvre polenta.
Carolyn Krueger, owner of this Corvallis-based bakery, is an artist—she just happens to use cakes as her canvas. In the business for 10 years, Carolyn’s specialty is creating a masterpiece with you. You’re not going to look at a list of five different cake styles and pick; instead, Carolyn will help you design your cake, then execute it using fabulously fresh ingredients.
Fresh Palate Café
Willamette Valley is truly an agricultural center; so in this area, the whole “chicken or beef” menu concept died a long time ago. The Fresh Palate Café takes advantage of Oregon’s bounty to design an impressive, not to mention delicious, menu.
REHEARSAL DINNER LOCATION
Joel Palmer House
Built by Joel Palmer, the pioneer, settler and co-founder of the city of Dayton, this home-turned-award-winning restaurant is all about the harvest—of mushrooms, that is! Depending on the season, one can order wild chantarelles, truffles, porcini...the list goes on and on. So if you’re somehow not a big fan of mushrooms, don’t do it; but if you are, go to town here.
SHE Design Events
Sue Hamilton, owner of SHE Designs Events, says her job is “a third design and detail coach, a third wedding advisor, and a third dream team.” She covers range of issues from “how to address wording on invitations, to ‘the bridesmaids dresses don’t fit!’” Last time we checked, “master seamstress” wasn’t a must-have skill on a wedding planner’s resume; however, it’s fabulous to know that if the duty calls, Sue will go there.