D20 Canyon Vista Vineyards & Winery)

Owners: Gary and Susan Cox

Address: 221 Canyon Vista Way, Ellensburg, Wa

(off Hwy 821, the scenic Yakima River Canyon Road)

Quilt Block:  ‘Grape Vine’

Vineyard History: This vineyard has been in the family for 13 years. Built in 2008 by Dick Huber, the original building was intended for equipment storage.  Now it is used at the Canyon Vista Winery’s tasting room.

The following detailed information about the vineyard was taken from the Cox Canyon Vista Vineyard website:

“Planted in 1998 in the Northwest corner of the Columbia Valley AVA is the 17 acre Cox Canyon Vineyard, 5 acres of which is in production. This is a beautiful West sloping site on an alluvial deposited Benwy silt loam soil laid down upon the uplifted basalts which form the entrance to the Wild & Scenic Yakima River Canyon. Volcanic ash has been deposited in layers from nearby Mt. Rainier, Adams, and St. Helens eruptions over time and provides valuable micronutrients to the soil profile. Elevation varies from 1400 to 1525 feet, higher than most other Yakima Valley AVA sites, provides for good air drainage, and allows for thermal amplitude to occur (diurnal temperature fluctuations of ~ 50 F which develop flavinoids in the grapes). Designation as the Ellensburg Canyon AVA is underway with the TTB.

This Terroir ripens late, producing low yields (2.5 tons/acre) with small berry size, deep color and great concentration of fruit flavors. The temperatures may be 3-5 F cooler on average, but the increased hours of sunlight from a more Northerly latitude during the middle of the growing season provide optimal conditions for intensely flavored fruit. This, coupled with companion cropping with currants (e.g. raspberries and native huckleberries, elderberries, and blackberries) allows for Xenia to occur (the direct effect of pollen on seed characteristics) which produce additional flavors within the wine grape seed desired by the winemaker. These soils allow for deep root penetration of ~ 25’.

Cox Canyon Vineyards took special care in developing this site, as rock had to be moved during planting. Said rock has been repositioned within the vineyard rows to capture heat during the day, releasing it back during the night to facilitate even respiration and sugar production.  All prunings are mulched back to the soil to encourage mycorrhizal fungus associations to form within the vines, facilitating water and nutrient uptake. Close attention is paid to irrigation applications utilizing sustainable, green, state-of-the-art precision agriculture technology to stress the vines (Regulated Deficit Irrigation) from which result intense fruit flavors.”

 The tasting room is open by appt.  (509)933-3523

website: coxcanyonvineyards@fairpoint.net