In 2006, with the help of Lisa Neal from Coeur de Terre Vineyards, Lonnie and Judy purchased a fifty acre site five miles northwest of Salem, Oregon in the Eola-Amity Hills AVA for their vineyard location. The property ranges from 225 to 410 feet in elevation with southern and southwestern slope overlooking the valley towards the Oregon coast range mountains. There are five different types of soil including Bellpine, Willakenzie, Steiwer, Rickreall, and Chehulpum. With a few acres of Pinot Noir already planted by previous owners Suzy and Colin Gagne, an additional 16 acres was planted in the fall of 2007 which became Julon Vineyard. One acre of the existing vines were retained in memory of Suzy Gagne.
Rootstocks 3309 and 101-14 were used on four different Pinot Noir clones including Pommard, Wadenswil, 115, and 777. The vines were planted in seven new blocks across the upper half of the property. Judy’s parents, Frank and Marion Lassa, moved from Arkansas to the vineyard property and provide oversight and care while Results Partners maintain the vineyard throughout the year.
In 2008, the existing vines produced about 1.25 tons of fruit. Lonnie worked under the guidance of Scott and Lisa Neal making wine at Coeur de Terre and produced 30 cases of Julon Vineyard designated Pinot Noir.
In 2009, the fruit from the existing vines was combined with fruit from Trisateum Vineyards, producing 150 cases of Pinot Noir and 125 cases of Pinot Gris. Without having the ability to do a vineyard designate because of purchased grapes, Lonnie developed two separate blends, the 2009 Donna Jean and the 2009 Judith Marie, named after his mother and wife, respectively.
As the third leaf arrived in the vineyard for 2010, a winery space in Carlton Oregon was leased and over 16 tons of Pinot Noir grapes were harvested producing 34 barrels of wine. The fruit was sorted and destemmed at Methven Vineyards and then fermented at the Carlton winery. Fruit was also purchased to produce 125 cases of Pinot Gris at Trisaetum Vineyards.
Their goal is to produce about 1000 cases annually focusing on limited quantities of high-quality, distinct Pinot Noirs and white wine blends. This will allow them to stay involved in all aspects of the business including the vineyard, wine-making, sales and events.
While trying to slowly build the business, they continued to live and work in Boise, Idaho, but spent 25-30 weekends per year, as well as the entire harvest/crush in Oregon. In 2012, they moved the winery to Boise, Idaho and will open at their new location on 1414 Grove Street in Boise's Linen District in March 2013.
Lonnie and Judy cannot say enough about the many Oregon wine-makers who have "influenced" and assisted them including Scott and Lisa Neal of Coeur de Terre Vineyards, James and Andrea Frey of Trisaetum, Greg McClellan of Trisateum, and Chris Lubberstedt of Methven Vineyards.