Looking for some advice two late 30 somethings planning a girls trip for late April 2017 for five nights. We were looking at the mcMenamin's Grand Lodge in Forest Grove as it has a spa and looks very reasonable with restaurant/bar on site. There looks to be a ton of wineries wondering if this is a good location or anyone has different recommendation for lodging that is under $200ish a night?
What are the best wineries to visit in the area in your opinion?
Other must do's or good restaurants?
Great ideas you already have for a stay in Oregon; have someone in your party who is a light or non-drinker drive for you because there are a plethora of terrific wineries all over Oregon.
I think five nights in the Valley is a bit much. Have you considered doing maybe 3 nights in Portland and two in the Valley? Getting to the Valley from Portland is only about an hour. Or, maybe spend a few nights in wine country and a few on the Oregon coast. If you have six days and five nights, you have opportunity to see more of Oregon than just the Valley.
Personally, I would avoid any McMenamin's property. The food tends to be mediocre, and the lodgings a bit inconsistent. I have stayed at the Wine Country Farm in Dayton several times. Great views, hospitable and charming. However, it may not be the spa type experience you seek. It is very close to some of the best wineries. Archery Summit, Domain Drouhin, Domaine Serene, White Rose, and Ponte are close by. Also check out the Carlton Wine Studio in Carlton. You can taste wines there from several wineries, many of them lesser known but very good. Avoid some of the touristy places on the main drag.
I would stay in McMinnville. There is a McMennamins there, but no spa. If you really want the spa Forest Grove is good. It is about 30 minutes from McMinnville which is the heart of wine country and a very nice place (My home town). Carlton is in between the two cities. You will not lack for wineries or things to do. You just won't have enough time to do it! There are many wineries right in Carlton and McMinnville and you won't have to travel around. Lot's to eat as well. In Carlton, Horseradish, Barrel 47, Carlton Corners and Carlton Bakery. In McMinnville, Nick's Italian Cafe, Crescent Cafe, Pure Vida, La Rambla, Gem Saloon, 1882 and Grain Station, All are great places! Enjoy your time here!
Willamette Valley Bed and Breakfast out of Carlton 5 minutes is a wonderful place to stay. Sue makes a great breakfast. They are 15 minutes from McMinnville which was voted second best small town in Parade magazine. It is quaint, Historic and beautiful and busy day and night with activity. Tasting rooms there also among the hundreds in the area. Don't forget the Spruce Goose and Space museum is also in town. McMinnville and Newberg also have hotels. Mac also has a McMenanmins downtown for food and lodging.
McMinnville is a cute town and it isn't a bad locale to do the wineries here as there are so many. If you are interested in buying select Pinots then make reservations at Soter, Brick House and Beaux Freres. Otherwise share tastings at Stoller, Sokol Blosser. and Utopia. Those will give you a good tour of the offerings. Carlton is a vintage little town and the tasting room can give you a range of Oregon Pinots. Pura Vida is good lunch in McMinnville. Try Ruddick Wood for beers/lunch and Recipe for dinner in Newberg.
One of the best wineries is McMenamin's Edgefield. It's also a good destination for Beer Brewery and live music. Theatre restaurants, bars, viniards, and I believe the rooms are reasonably priced. Great view of the countryside and right on the Columbia River Gorge in Troutdale, Oregon.
Stayed in McMinnvile. Great location for walking to restaurants and tasting rooms. Did a VRBO that was quaint. Highly recommend this cute town. Ate dinner at Nicks Italian Restaurant one night. Had appetizers at couple others in town. Rooftop bar at hotel that is not to be missed.
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