The resulting Columbia Gorge appellation, located approximately 60 miles east of Portland, Oregon, occupies 280 square miles (4,432 acres) of the Columbia River Gorge, encompassing parts of Hood River and Wasco counties in Oregon and Skamania and Klickitat counties in Washington.
The unique climate and soil makeup in the Columbia Gorge AVA produces a wonderful growing environment for early varietals, such as Pinot Noir, Pinot Gris, Chardonnay, and Gewürztraminer. Located in the rain shadow of Mount Hood and the rest of the Cascade Volcanic Arch in northern Oregon, the climate remains significantly drier and more temperate than the surrounding area.
The resulting wine have a distinct "Columbia Gorge" structure; the area produces slightly sweeter whites with a sparkling nose that finish in a vivacious burst of flavor, and soft, deep-throated reds. Alongside the more common early-ripening grapes, the Columbia Gorge appellation produces award-winning Cabernets, Zinfandels, Syrahs, and Rieslings.