Airport Ranch Wine Estates Since 1928
Airport Ranch is a family owned and operated vineyard situated at Washington State’s oldest established AVA.
Airport Ranch planted their first wine grapes in 1968 in the heart of the Yakima Valley – Washington State. Nestled along the foothills of the Rattlesnake Mountains, it spans 830 acres and includes over 20 different varietals. Today, their estate vineyard spans 830 acres and includes over 20 different varietals. The experience and knowledge gained over the years have helped them craft well-balanced wines reflecting great varietal expression and quality.
Wine grapes were initially planted by Don Miller, in 1968. This led to the establishment of their commercial vineyard in 1971 – one of the first commercial vineyards in Washington State. Farming in one place for an extensive period of time has provided them with a high level of knowledge and a more experienced approach to viticulture.
They are firm believers that great wines begin in the vineyard. At Airfield Estates, they use 100% estate grown fruit that produces well-balanced wines with true varietal characteristics showcasing the subtleties of the terroir. From lava-layered mountains to glacier-cut valleys, followed by sediment-deposited soil from epic ice age floods, the terroir of this region is unique and ideal for growing Vitis vinifera vines.
Classified as silt loam, their vineyard has one of the preferred soil types for growing wine grapes due to its drainage capabilities, nutrient contents, and pH range. On their farm, there are areas of shallow soils dispersed with fractured basalt, as well as sandier sites giving them quite a lot of diversity within a fairly small geographic region.
A high desert climate provides them with long, hot summer days and cool nights to fully ripen their fruit while retaining natural acidity. With less than an average of six inches of rain per year, the limited rainfall and drought-like conditions are not always ideal for growing grapes. Fortunately for them, they have the ability to incorporate targeted irrigation – thanks to the efforts of their great-grandfather, H. Lloyd Miller who was also considered as the Father of the Roza Irrigation Canal, He was instrumental in bringing high mountain water to the Yakima Valley below.
This vineyard is 850 - 1250 feet elevated above sea level at 46° N Latitude (similar to Bordeaux Region of France, which is 45° N)
- Cabernet Franc
- Cabernet Sauvignon
- Petit Verdot
- Pinot Meunier
- Pinot Noir
- Pinot Gris
- Sauvignon Blanc
- Muscat Canelli
Winemakers Marcus Miller and Travis Maple treat all of their estate grapes with the utmost care and attention to detail. Compared to other bulk wine suppliers, they take a small batch approach where 2500 to 4000-gallon tanks are used for fermentation. Their rigorous attention to detail includes topping every 2 weeks, gassing all headspace twice a week, and rigorous DO management.