Albany is located right in the middle of Oregon’s Willamette Valley, one of the world’s most-praised wine-growing regions. As if that weren’t enough, Oregon is also home to an award-winning craft beer scene, a booming artisan cider industry, and fine local distilleries.
Can’t decide which beverage you want to try? Sample them all on the Mid-Valley Sip Trip.
Here’s an overview of some of the fine beverages you can enjoy while you’re in Albany.
In the gentle hills surrounding Albany, you can find many wineries within a scenic drive of less than an hour.
Springhill Cellars: Located on a ridge in North Albany, Springhill Cellars is family-owned winery that produces award-winning Pinot Noir and Pinot Gris on an estate vineyard planted in 1978. Don’t miss their annual Federweisser Festival, a harvest-time celebration of Federweisser, a sweet and sparkling German-style wine.
Marks Ridge Winery: Visit Marks Ridge Winery for excellent wines and a breathtaking view you won’t forget. Nestled in the Cascade foothills 27 miles east of Albany, Marks Ridge is one of the highest-elevation vineyards in the Willamette Valley.
Willamette Valley Vineyards: One of Oregon’s premier wineries, Willamette Valley Vineyards is located just 20 minutes north of Albany in Turner. Their tasting room, renovated in 2013, offers a beautiful space as well as a mouth-watering food pairing menu.
Ankeny Vineyard: Enjoy an intimate tasting at Ankeny Vineyards, 30 minutes north of Albany and adjacent to the Willamette Valley Scenic Bikeway. Watch wildlife at nearby Ankeny Wildlife Refuge and savor a weekend breakfast or pizza from their wood-fired pizza oven.
For a full listing of Willamette Valley wineries, visit OregonWineCountry.org.
Oregon is home to dozens of fiercely independent local brewers, crafting tasty microbrews made with locally-grown hops and barley.
Calapooia Brewing Co.: Albany’s oldest brewery has been serving local brews for more than 20 years. Stop in at their downtown Albany brewpub for their famous chili beer or another artisan brew, crafted with pride onsite.
Deluxe Brewing: Specializing in German-style lagers, this Albany brewpub joined the brewery scene in 2013 and has quickly gained popularity. Visit their riverside tasting room in a reclaimed industrial space and learn why.
Mazama Brewing: Founded by husband-and-wife team Jeff and Kathy Tobin, Mazama is named after the Northwest volcano Mt. Mazama that erupted to form Crater Lake. Mazama features Belgian-style beers, served at local pubs or in their taproom on Highway 34 west of Albany.
The Growler Garage & Tap House: They’ve got 54 taps of beer, wine, cider, kombucha and more in historic downtown Albany.
Rogue Hop Farm: Located 25 minutes north of Albany on a century-old hop farm is Chatoe Rogue, the local branch of Oregon’s famed Rogue Brewery. The farms grows hops, barley, honey and more, and they turn it all into award-winning beers and spirits. The Chatoe Rogue farm features a tasting room with both indoor and outdoor seating, live music in the summer, and a quirky bed and breakfast in an old farmhouse on site.
A new generation of Oregon artisans is reclaiming the centuries-old tradition of hard fruit ciders. Of the 12 cideries featured in Willamette Week’s 2014 guide to Portland ciders, two-thirds aren’t in the city at all–they’re in the Willamette Valley. You should stop by and taste the difference for yourself.
2 Towns Ciderhouse: Founded by childhood friends from Albany and Corvallis (those are the two towns their name refers to) this cider powerhouse has taken the Oregon craft cider scene by storm. With flagship varieties like the Bright Cider available year-round, along with seasonal specialties like the Nice Naughty (named one of Willamette Week’s top five ciders of 2013) stop at their tasting room on Highway 34 west of Albany to taste The Ginja Ninja, the Rhurbarbarian, or one of their other innovative ciders.
Traditions Ciderworks: A sister company to 2 Towns Cider, Traditions Ciderworks features limited releases of ciders made only from farm-grown apples within the Willamette Valley.
The ultimate in local beverages, mead is crafted from nothing but locally-sourced honey, fruit and water. Taste why the world’s oldest fermented beverage is making a new-world comeback.
Nectar Creek Honeywine: Founders Nick and Phil Lorenz specialize in session meads–these brews are a light, bubbly, and drinkable mead infused with the flavors of local fruits and flowers. Visit their tasting room, located west of Albany on Highway 34, to experience one of their innovative brews.
Sinister Distilling: The same folks that brought Deluxe Brewing to life are also behind Sinister Distilling, making it Albany’s first “brewstillery.” Sinister uses a whiskey pot still from Portugal to make fine whiskeys, gin and rum.
Spiritopia Liqueurs: Chris and Lori Beatty started the distillery in 2014 and produce award-winning liqueurs such as their ginger liqueur (which received the Best of Show ad Double Gold Medal at the 2016 Seattle International Spirits Awards), and cask-strength apple brandy made from PNW apples. Located off of 720 NE Granger Ave, Building B, in Corvallis, OR, it is an easy and quick drive from Albany.
4 Spirits: Named in honor of the four fallen comrades that owner/distiller Dawson Officer served with in Iraq, 4 Spirits makes fine whiskey and vodka and donates a portion of the proceeds from every bottle sold to charities benefiting soldiers. Their tasting room is located in Adair Village, a former military base just 20 minutes northwest of Albany.