The 1920s English-style house, with suites for wine tourists, remains the centerpiece of Hummingbird Estate. ##Photo provided
Susan and Ed Walks, owners of Hummingbird Estate. ##Photo provided
Hummingbird Estate Chardonnay Suite. ##Photo provided
Rellik Wines tasting room, located outside Jacksonville.##Photo provided
Rellik Winery owners (from left) Jessica and Christopher Wallace, and Delando and Zoey Pegan, and their children. ##Photo provided
Rellik offers lodging for wine country guests. ##Photo provided

Overnight Sensations

New Rogue Valley wineries offer guests vineyard vacation suites

By Chris Cook

With many summer travel plans either crushed or left hanging, why not consider a destination closer to home?

Recognized by Wine Enthusiast, Sunset and Forbes as a top wine destination — not to mention a place of abundant outdoor recreation, boutique shopping and gastro delights — Southern Oregon continues to evolve with new brands and fresh places to stay.

Jacksonville boasts seven wineries — with the Applegate and Rogue valleys adding about 40 more. Just outside the quaint town, two new businesses are welcoming guests ready for wine and a place to unwind afterward.

Introducing Hummingbird Estate and Rellik Winery. Both feature luxury overnight accommodations along with numerous amenities to serve as the centerpiece of a complete wine country experience. The vibe of each feels unique, and the quality of service and attention to detail prove well matched.

Hummingbird Estate

Head up the hill a short distance to the 47-acre Hummingbird Estate. Open since September 2019, the 7,700-square-foot English cottage-style mansion, built in the 1920s, offers five suites with second-floor views, in addition to sprawling grounds for a variety of events.

Once home to the prominent Carpenter family and the first territorial governor of Alaska, the home was listed on the National Register of Historic Places in 2005 for its architectural and social significance. Midwestern farmers Ed and Susan Walk purchased the property in 2017, and it has been a labor of love renovating this grand and historic place.

The heritage site is currently producing its first estate wines and offering guests the opportunity to step back in time while enjoying the modern conveniences afforded by a thoughtful makeover.

The tasting room atmosphere feels reminiscent of a more genteel era, where guests can relax, unwind and take in the east-facing views of Mount McLoughlin and the rim of Crater Lake. Whether sitting on the spacious terrace overlooking original estate gardens and newly-planted vineyards, or ensconced in the original mahogany-paneled “gentlemen’s room” tasting bar, you’re invited to enjoy a stroll around the storied property while savoring Hummingbird’s wines, plus a small menu of food, too.

Having released their first vintage in 2019, the Walks make Tempranillo, Cabernet Sauvignon, Merlot and Viognier along with a surprising sparkling Chardonnay. More vines are still being planted with plans for another tasting room and a brewery closer to the road.

With comfortable yet grand-scale common rooms on the main floor, the upstairs offers five charming and expansive three-room guest suites, each lovingly restored with built-in cabinetry, original decorative fireplaces, ensuite bathrooms and private seating areas. One suite was specifically designed with a bride in mind.

Kristina, the Walks’ daughter and estate manager, captures Hummingbird perfectly, “It’s amazing but not imposing. Our style is, ‘Take a seat, relax, read a book or spend time with friends.’”

But, if you’re more inclined toward activity, pick up a paddle and enjoy the private pickleball court while overlooking the sweeping views of the Rogue Valley. The Walks have truly made “a place like no other!”

Rellik Winery

Don’t let the name scare you. Rellik — “killer” spelled backward — promises a family-friendly experience in the hills outside Jacksonville.

Before moving to the area in 2016, Delando and Zoey Pegan bought and renovated what Delando called a “dive bar” in Northern California’s Benicia into an upscale “killer” tavern. That’s where they took the unusual name and iconic raven logo. They’ve worked their same magic on this property, with extensive upgrades and renovations, including expanding the vineyard.

The Pegans — with Bay Area partners Christopher and Jessica Wallace — established five acres of Grenache, Malbec, Viognier, Chardonnay and Merlot alongside four acres of 38-year-old Cabernet Sauvignon.

A small herd of alpacas and a guard llama may greet you onto the bustling property featuring the newly renovated tasting room and guest suites. Wind your way around the grounds to enjoy the park-like setting with orchards, walking trails, shady seating areas, a pond and a classic white gazebo — ideal for a wedding. Other event spaces are planned as is an on-site crush facility.

With a welcoming industrial farmhouse feel, the spacious tasting room opens to a grape-arbored patio designed for both large and small groups — the overall capacity is 100 outdoor guests. The décor offers clean lines with leather, metal and wood furniture. Playing upon Rellik’s distinctive raven logo are whimsical touches throughout the design.

Inside the new commercial kitchen, chef Chris Benston serves hungry visitors tapas-style food pairings, including European-inspired artisan pizzas and panini, spicy homemade tomato soup and gourmet grilled cheese sandwiches. When in season, pears from the estate make the menu, as well as other locally sourced ingredients for exquisite salads and desserts.

Among the wines are visitor favorites Cabernet Sauvignon, Sparkling Grenache, Rosé and the Three-Eyed Raven, a proprietary red blend. Meritage, Pinot Noir and Viognier are also currently available.

Adjacent to the tasting room, the newly remodeled and beautifully appointed Rellik House offers three separate suites for overnight stays. Two are one-bedroom and one has three bedrooms — each with a kitchenette, laundry and access to shared amenities like a common gathering room with a fireplace and large dining table. The pool and firepit provide a welcome respite after a day of wine tasting and Southern Oregon adventure. As owner Delando likes to say, “At Rellik, the celebration doesn’t have to end at closing time.”

Web Design and Web Development by Buildable