New site houses estate winery, vineyard, and tasting room open by appointment
Newberg, Ore. (April 19, 2021) — Nicolas-Jay, an Oregon partnership between Jean-Nicolas Méo of Burgundy’s Méo-Camuzet and visionary music entrepreneur Jay Boberg, announces the opening of a new winery and tasting room at 11905 NE Dudley Road in Newberg, Oregon. The tasting room is open to the public by appointment only, with a welcoming hospitality program centered around Burgundian winemaking on Willamette Valley soil.
Tucked in a natural amphitheater in the northern reaches of the Dundee Hills AVA, Nicolas-Jay’s new winery and tasting room is surrounded by Douglas firs and Oregon white oaks. The winery lies at the base of an open slope, the current and future site of their estate vineyard. The 53 acres were once a Longhorn cattle farm, and the converted barn now houses a winery, two temperature-controlled cellars, a tasting room, and a tasting deck offering 300-degree views of the location.
With a glass of rosé in-hand, guests approach the new tasting room via a ramp above the gravity flow winemaking space below, a welcome that offers an inside-look of the operation. At its apex is the threshold of a brightly lit tasting room, an inviting space with an open kitchen, lounge, a wood-burning fireplace, and large tables for seated tastings. The floorboards, three-quarter-inch Douglas fir tongue and groove, were milled from trees felled and kiln-dried on the property, as were the three long tables, each made from a single tree.
The tasting room opens out onto a rooftop deck with a spectacular view of Nicolas-Jay’s first planting on the facing hillside, all Pinot Noir. In the fall, the team will plant several additional blocks to Chardonnay and Pinot Noir. Nicolas-Jay farms no-till and organically, and the winery is the proud owner of Oregon’s first autonomous electric tractor.
With the new Nicolas-Jay winery, Jean-Nicolas Méo, also Owner-Winemaker at Domaine Méo-Camuzet in Burgundy, was able to bring to life the winery he always wanted to build. Employing learnings from his centuries’ old family domaine in Vosne-Romanée, as well as seven vintages in the Willamette Valley, Méo has the highest expectations for the wine made in this building and the grapes grown on the special land surrounding it.
Jay Boberg, Proprietor & Winegrower at Nicolas-Jay, led the charge in transforming the old barn into the new winery and tasting room. His role handling day-to-day operations of the winery spans from harvest and blending decisions, to sales and marketing. Boberg entered the wine business after decades of leadership in the music industry, first as co-founder of IRS Records, then as President of MCA Universal. In the tasting room, Boberg, who fostered the careers of R.E.M., The Roots, Sublime, Mary J. Blige, Sigur Rós, and many others, has created playlists for the tasting room that draw on his history with groundbreaking artists.
“This really was a massive undertaking,” said Boberg of designing and building the new winery, a project that started in 2019. “Every decision was thoughtful: from the conservation plan we adopted to protect native white oaks on the property, to the many artists and artisans we brought in for the tasting room. Jean-Nicolas and I shared a vision for the warmth we wanted the tasting room to exude. It’s been a dream of Jean-Nicolas’ to build a winery from scratch and we agreed we wanted the experience to feel personal, like you’re walking into our home.”
Guests are met with a hospitality driven experience at Nicolas-Jay. Wine flights are presented in Austrian-blown Sophienwald glassware, featuring Nicolas-Jay’s single vineyard wines and its Willamette Valley collection, including the L’Ensemble Pinot Noir and the Affinités Chardonnay. Every visit includes local bites from neighboring artisans and farms, like local hazelnuts and cheeses from Briar Rose Creamery.
Nicolas-Jay is now open for one-hour tasting appointments Thursday through Monday, from 10 am to 4 pm. Reservations are available via Tock.