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Matt Wastradowski | 11/11/2020 | Wine
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Six Fire Pits to Keep You Cozy in the Willamette Valley

With cooler temperatures, shorter days, and the occasional rain shower showing up in the five-day forecast, fall and winter are quickly arriving in the Willamette Valley.

But if you’re looking to stay warm while out and about this season, the region hosts plenty of venues—restaurants and bars, resorts and B&Bs—that boast fire pits and fireplaces, indoors and out. So the next time you’re looking to keep warm around the fire, keep these ideas in mind.

The fire pit at Springhill Cellars Winery is a popular place to hang out in fall and winter. (Photo by AO Films)

Since 1988, Springhill Cellars Winery has produced award-winning Pinot noir and Pinot gris on a scenic farm just outside of Albany—largely using fruit from the winery's own estate vineyard. The Springhill Cellars tasting room sits at the base of the Coast Range foothills and boasts an expansive outdoor seating area, both covered and open-air. And, yes, that includes a brick fire pit, flanked gracefully by flora and wine barrels for a cozy retreat. 

Keep in mind that Springhill Cellars is open May-December, with tastings by appointment only between December and April. So make haste if you want that fireside experience this season.

When the weather outside is frightful this winter, the Oregon Garden Resort offers plenty of opportunities to head inside and keep warm just outside the community of Silverton.

The 103-room hotel, for instance, boasts a gas fireplace in each room. And befitting its name, the resort’s 21-and-older Fireside Lounge is oriented around a grand wood fireplace for a cozy, yet socially distant dining experience.

You can also rest easy knowing the Oregon Garden Resort has made the Responsible Reopening commitment to keep guests as safe as possible; in recent months, the resort has implemented strict sanitizing procedures, started offering contactless check-in, updated cleaning protocols, and more.

The fire pit (and heater) at Cória Estates create a cozy experience. (Photo by Amanda Mead)

The Tuscan-inspired Cória Estates in South Salem boasts an outdoor seating area with some of the region’s most beautiful views—where you can enjoy 360-degree views of the winery’s 94-acre vineyard and the wider Willamette Valley. Sunsets over the Coast Range foothills are especially dramatic.

Its fire pits and heaters swap those expansive views for a cozier experience, inviting visitors to sip their favorite Pinot on a covered patio—and next to towering stacks of wine barrels.

The boutique, family-owned winery has also made the Responsible Reopening commitment to create the safest possible experience. Reservations are required, cash payments are not currently accepted to cut down on points of contact, and only outdoor seating is available (when the weather allows).

Since 2011, the veteran-led 4 Spirits Distillery has poured a variety of small-batch spirits at the southern edge of Corvallis. The distillery’s creative spirits (like its habanero spiced rum and cucumber gin) pair well with a popular food menu, which includes burgers, sandwiches, pizza, and a filling plate of chicken and waffles—and it can all be enjoyed on a spacious covered patio and around a large fire pit.

4 Spirits has also distinguished itself with its thoughtful community engagement, as well. The distillery was founded in memory of four Oregon National Guardsmen and routinely donates to statewide programs that support veterans and their families with reintegration. 4 Spirits also donates 10% of the proceeds from each bottle of whiskey sold to veteran programs, as well.

4 Spirits has also made the Responsible Reopening commitment, taking a variety of steps to keep guests and staff members safe.

Abbey Road Farm offers a fire pit outside of its Silo Suites B&B and winery tasting room.

The bucolic Abbey Road Farm, just outside Newberg in the heart of the Willamette Valley’s wine country, boasts a tasting room and bed and breakfast for enjoying your time on the working farm.

If you’re staying the night, Abbey Road Farm hosts the Silo Suites Bed & Breakfast, housed in a converted grain silo. Stays include a tour of the farm, the chance to meet its animals, and a multi-course breakfast. A large fire pit sits outside the inn, as well.

And Abbey Road’s tasting room is open, as well, with outdoor seating when weather allows. If the sun breaks through, the tasting room boasts a large fire pit surrounded by a handful of Adirondack chairs. Reservations aren’t required, but it can’t hurt to call ahead, just to be safe.

Abbey Road has also made the Responsible Reopening commitment to keep visitors, overnight guests, and staff members safe. As part of its pledge, Abbey Road has made masks and hand sanitizer available to guests at all indoor spaces throughout the property, created socially distant table arrangements in the tasting room, and has moved the B&B's dining room to a well-ventilated, heated outdoor space.

McMenamins North Bank in Eugene sits along—you guessed it—the north bank of the Willamette River, and takes full advantage with gorgeous river views indoor and out. But the tiki-inspired restaurant and bar impresses with fire pits and fireplaces for keeping warm wherever you are.

Outside, you can pair your craft ales and lagers with a fire pit that overlooks the Ruth Bascom Riverbank Path System along the Willamette River. Indoors, visitors can sip tiki-inspired cocktails and snack on McMenamins’ famous Cajun tots next to a roaring fireplace in the cozy, wood-paneled Kapu Hut.

PHONE: 866.548.5018
EMAIL: info@oregonwinecountry.org
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