Ankeny Vineyard


Overlooking Ankeny National Bird Refuge, our vineyard provides tranquil views. Each weekend we feature a special menu created by our Chefs, consisting of appetizers, pizzas and desserts. The team at Ankeny strives to source our ingredients locally, supporting our community. Along with the vineyard we also have a lush garden of fresh vegetables, herbs and fruit. On our 31 acres we focus on Pinot Noir, growing five different clones, resulting in extraordinary Pinot Noir and Pinot Gris grapes. Joe Olexa, the owner, seeks to capture the unique character (terroir) of the land. We feature a Marechal Foch (Oregon's Other Great Red).

Location Description

Ankeny Vineyard is located in the heart of the Willamette Valley.


  • Growing outstanding Oregon Pinot Noir since 1982.

Additional Information

  • Meeting / Conference Facilities:
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  • Dog Friendly:
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  • Wine Tasting:
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  • Lodging / Bed & Breakfast:

Average Bottle Price

$ $20


Owner/Winegrower Joe Olexa started Ankeny Vineyard when he moved onto the land in 1980 and started preparing the ground for planting. With four college degrees, none of which had anything to do with growing grapes, he was ready to pursue his love affair with dirt. Over the years, thirty-five acres of grapes were brought into production with the emphasis on Pinot Noir, Pinot Gris, and Marechal Foch.


The Cox Cemetery is on a one-acre clearing nestled on the timbered south slope of Ankeny Hill and just above the vine rows of Ankeny Vineyard. It was founded by Thomas Cox (1790-1862), Salem’s first storekeeper. The northeast corner of Commercial and Ferry Streets bears a plaque that marks the location of the old store. In 1847, Tom and his wife Martha brought overland eleven wagonloads of gunpowder, shot and store supplies from Ohio. After his wife’s death in 1849, he retired to the farm that was here at Ankeny Vineyard’s current location. He experimented with growing new varieties of fruit trees and developed a variety of peach tree known as Cox’s Golden Cling. Today, the historic Cox Cemetery has 85 marked graves and 12 unmarked. Burials at Cox Cemetery are restricted to descendents of pioneer families buried there or to people living in the district. Tom and Martha Cox are now resting in eternal peace in the cemetery they created almost 150 years ago. When visiting Ankeny Vineyard, please feel free to pay your respects to those pioneers that sacrificed so much to start a new life here in Oregon.

The Willamette Valley was once a rich mix of wildlife habitats. Valley wetlands were once extensive, with meandering stream channels and vast seasonal marshes. Today, the valley is a mix of farmland and growing cities, with fewer areas remaining for wildlife.

Ankeny NWR was created to provide a vital wintering habitat for over 100,000 Dusky Canada geese. Unlike other Canada geese, Duskies have limited summer and winter ranges. They nest on Alaska’s Copper River Delta and winter almost exclusively in the Willamette Valley. Habitat loss, predation, and hunting have caused a decrease in population. Ankeny NWR contains about 2,800 acres of flat to gently rolling land near the confluence of the Willamette and Santiam rivers. The refuge’s fertile farmed fields, hedgerows, forests, and wetlands provide a variety of wildlife habitats.

Ducks, geese, and swans are commonly seen in refuge fields and ponds through the fall and winter. Ankeny residents, like the northern saw-whet owl, attract area bird watchers. The refuge is open to limited opportunities for wildlife-oriented education and recreation.

The Willamette Valley refuges incorporate an intensive cooperative farming program in order to provide high protein browse (annual ryegrass, perennial ryegrass and fescue) for seven subspecies of wintering Canada geese, with primary emphasis on the Dusky subspecies. Under cooperative agreements, area farmers plant refuge fields. Some fields are planted annually and others are mowed or burned to produce the tender, nutritious grasses preferred by geese.

The geese also need water for resting and foraging habitat. Many refuge wetlands occur naturally; others are created by dikes and levees. In some low-lying areas of the refuge, wetlands that were drained or channelized by previous owners have been restored to increase diversity and desirability of habitat for wildlife. The majority of wetlands are being managed as moist soil units, to promote growth of wetland food plants (millet, smartweed, sedges, etc.) used as food by waterfowl and other wildlife.

By resting in undisturbed areas on the refuges, wintering geese regain energy reserves required for migration and nesting. This sanctuary also reduces depredation problems on neighboring private lands by encouraging waterfowl to use refuge resources. Because of their need for a quiet resting area, waterfowl habitat is closed to public entry while the geese are in residence in order to minimize human disturbance. Recently, the refuge has increased efforts to restore and expand riparian forest and wet prairie habitats.

The Team

Matt Calidonna - Tasting Room Manager

Kelly McClure - Ankeny’s Chef


2011 Deepwood Wine & Jazz Festival
Best in Show, white wine
Ankeny Melange Blanc
2010 Oregon State Fair Wine Competition
Silver Medal Awards for Ankeny Vineyard
2006 Reserve Pinot Noir
2008 Pinot Gris
Ankeny Amber, Pinot Noir Dessert Wine
Bronze Medal Awards for Ankeny Vineyard
Ankeny Sunset
2008 Marechal Foch
2009 Northwest Food and Wine Festival
2006 Reserve Pinot Noir, Gold Medal Winner
2008 Marechal Foch, Silver Medal Winner
2008 Pinot Gris, Bronze Medal Winner
2009 Oregon State Fair Wine Competition
Bronze Medal Awards for Ankeny Vineyard
2006 Reserve Pinot Noir
2006 Hershy’s Red Pinot Noir
2007 Marechal Foch
Pinot Noir Rose
2008 Oregon State Fair Wine Competition
Bronze Medal Awards for Ankeny Vineyard
2006 Pinot Gris
2006 Oregon State Fair Wine Competition
Bronze Medal Awards for Ankeny Vineyard
2003 Pinot Noir Reserve
2005 Oregon State Fair Wine Competition
Silver Medal Awards for Ankeny Vineyard
2004 Pinot Gris
Bronze Medal Awards for Ankeny Vineyard
2003 Marechal Foch
2004 Oregon State Fair Wine Competition
Gold Medal Award for Ankeny Vineyard
2003 Pinot Gris
Bronze Medal Awards for Ankeny Vineyard
2003 Hershy’s Red Pinot Noir
2002 Pinot Noir Reserve
2002 Marechal Foch

12/10/03: “Outstanding! Ankeny Vineyards 2002 Hershy’s Red Pinot Noir, Willamette Valley This vineyard in a bucolic setting near Salem long has ranked among the state’s premiere grape producers, and here’s just the latest fine wine from Joe Olexa, which he names after the family’s friendly Lab. The fruit of the Pommard Clone exudes scents of strawberry and cherry with hints of jam and stemminess for complexity. Dark fruit dominates the flavor profile with nice and light tannins that don’t overpower the fruit.” Review from Wine Press Northwest magazine.

2003 Oregon State Fair Wine Competition
Bronze Medal Awards for Ankeny Vineyard
2002 Hershy’s Red Pinot Noir
2001 Reserve Pinot Noir
2002 Marechal

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Mon-Thurs: Tasting Room 12-5 Friday: Food and Wine from 12 to 8 pm.


2565 Riverside Dr. South
Salem, Oregon 97306
United States

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