Tero Estates: Old Vines, Treasured Wines

At TERO Estates, it is our goal to produce small lots of estate wines that reflect the ultimate expression of Windrow Vineyard.

Reviving and improving this historic property allows us to follow our passion for creating treasured wines while showing respect for the vines and the people who tend them.

Tero Estates

The TERO Winemaking Philosophy

Tero Estates sits in the middle of the oldest commercially planted vineyard in the Walla Walla Valley AVA, Windrow Vineyard near Milton-Freewater, Oregon.

All estate fruit is hand-harvested and immediately delivered to our crush pad at the top of the hill, where it is gently destemmed, sorted, and placed into fermentation bins. The must is then cold soaked for two to five days before yeast is added to start the fermentation. The cap is “punched down” by hand three times a day.

When the fermentation is complete, the “free run” wine is siphoned into barrels and the remaining must is placed into our hydraulic basket press. Pressing off the skins and pulp is done gently and checked frequently to avoid bitter tannins. This “press fraction” is barreled separately from the free run.

At Tero Estates we use 90% French oak (70% new). Our focus is on Vicard with some Taransaud barrels and Gamba 2000 liter casks. Additionally, we use 10% Hungarian oak. Our Cabernets are aged in 90% new barrels while Merlot and Tero Red age in 50% new.

Once the wine is in barrel it is disturbed only when absolutely necessary to rack and clean the barrels or for topping. It is our belief that wine ages most gracefully when left quiet. Our barrel room is surrounded by other rooms of our newly constructed winery enhancing temperature stability. Typically our blending is done at about 18 months. Wines are left to age in barrels for 20 to 30 months. Bottling decisions are made when the wine shows us that it is ready, not before.

Once in bottle our wines age for a further 10 to 12 months before release. We believe the extra aging time allows the tannins and acidity to better integrate. This time also brings the nuanced subtleties of a wine to the forefront, something that younger vintage wines aren’t able to demonstrate. With bottle age the explosion of fruit calms down and perfumes, florals, spices and leathers come through, creating a wine that is much more diverse, elegant and a pleasure to drink.

Tero Estates

History

What they found was beyond all expectations! A mature vineyard, full of history, on rolling ground with unobstructed views of the Blue Mountains.

Tero Estates is a partnership between longtime friends Mike TEmbreull and Doug ROskelley (TERO). The idea began over dinner at an Italian restaurant in 2006. Doug was talking about making wine and Mike mentioned that a friend had seen a vineyard for sale in the Walla Walla area. Wouldn't it be exciting to make wine from an estate vineyard! Doug and Jan traveled to Milton-Freewater, Oregon to see Windrow vineyard. What they found was beyond all expectations! A mature vineyard, full of history, on rolling ground with unobstructed views of the Blue Mountains. The purchase was finalized on June 1, 2007.

Windrow was part of the original Seven Hills Vineyard planted by Dr. Herb Hendricks and Dr. James McClellan in 1981. It was the first commercial vineyard in the Walla Walla Valley. In 1994 the vineyard was split and the eastern part was sold along with the name Seven Hills. The remaining vineyard was renamed Windrow. The wines that have been made from this vineyard is a Who's Who of Walla Walla Valley. Leonetti Cellar used Windrow grapes in their Cabernets from 1983 to 2000. "Windrow Vineyard" Cabernet Sauvignon's have been made by L'Ecole (1995), Walla Walla Vintners (1997), Bunchgrass (2006) and Cooper (2006).

Seven Hills Winery has sourced fruit from Windrow since their inception. Today several Walla Walla wineries, including Seven Hills Winery, Walla Walla Vintners, Waters and Glen Corrie, as well as wineries in Woodinville, continue to make exceptional wines from Windrow Vineyard grapes. It is this vineyard (worked by the hands that have cared for it for over 16 years) that we, Tero Estates, rely on for our outstanding estate fruit.

In early 2010 we were able to bring Ashley Trout and Flying Trout Wines to Tero Estates. Ashley makes wonderful malbec, malbec blends and torrontes, perfect fits for the cabernets, cabernet franc, merlot and blends that are our specialty.

Our downtown Walla Walla shop opened on February 11th, 2011. Please visit our home page for open hours.

Tero Estates