Dr. Robert Gross and daughter Barbara Gross. ##Photo by Cheryl Juetten

Cooper Mountain Climbs

Historic vineyard, Arborbrook comprise major purchase

By OWP Staff

Cooper Mountain Vineyards, the first certified Biodynamic winery in the Pacific Northwest, is expanding where it’s planted with two significant acquisitions in the Willamette Valley.

Founded by Dr. Robert Gross, a natural medicine practitioner and early proponent of holistic viticulture, and his wife, Corrine Gross, the winery is now managed by daughter Barbara Gross, officially the director of operations. Robert still owns the winery, alongside Barbara and her two siblings, Anne Branfman and David Gross

Since its founding in 1978, Cooper Mountain has focused on sustainability, and it continues with the purchase of Chehalem Mountain Vineyard, home to some of the Willamette Valley’s oldest Pinot Noir vines — planted more than 50 years ago — and ArborBrook Vineyard and tasting room. In all, 325 acres are now under Cooper Mountain’s care.

“These acquisitions give us the opportunity to raise our quality to the highest level, in terms of both winemaking and hospitality,” Barbara explains. “Our family could not be more thrilled about this opportunity to grow our roots deeper into the Valley and further invest in the Oregon wine industry.”

Chehalem Mountain Vineyard, the third vineyard planted in the Willamette Valley, was established in 1969 by wine pioneer Dick Erath. Containing seven clones of Pinot Noir and three Chardonnay, the vineyard produces some of the Valley’s highest quality grapes. Cooper Mountain acquired the vineyard from its most recent proprietor, Capra Company, which is reducing its landholdings to focus further on WG Edge, a philanthropic program to support young women in agriculture.

ArborBrook was founded by Dave and Mary Hansen in 2001, with an estate vineyard and tasting room in Newberg. With Cooper Mountain’s original location in Beaverton, this tasting room allows the winery to broaden its hospitality programs into the heart of the Valley, much closer to esteemed wineries.

Cooper Mountain’s five estate vineyards are certified organic and Biodynamic, farmed by a team led by Gerry Sanchez for over three decades. Cooper Mountain will begin converting Chehalem Mountain Vineyard and ArborBrook’s vineyard to organic and Biodynamic in 2022.

Of the 325 acres accumulated by these acquisitions, 200 are planted to vines, with 125 acres remaining natural forest.

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