Dr. Donald Olson moved to Oregon to pursue his vision. He purchased an older vineyard in the Willamette Valley, planted in 1972, and renamed it Olson Estate Vineyard. High in the Dundee Hills, the ten acres of old vines produce high-quality Pinot Noir, Pinot Gris, and Chardonnay year after year.
Don was drawn to the close ties Pinot Noir has to the earth and its ability to express terroir. The name Torii Mor derives from the Torii gate in the property’s Japanese garden and the ancient Scandinavian word for earth. Together, the name is a nod to Pinot Noir’s expression of terroir and connection to the earth.
After the first vintage in 1993 with just 1,000 cases, Torii Mor today produces 10,000 cases of wines of elegance and balance that Don began pursuing years ago. Torii Mor continues to pursue elegance in wine making, respect for the earth, and balanced wines that can be enjoyed for years to come.
Torii Mor’s own Olson Estate Vineyard has been the cornerstone for production since its initial vintage in 1993. Since then, Torii Mor has compensated its growth in production by sourcing fruit from a number of vineyards throughout the Willamette, Umpqua, and Rogue Valleys. Currently, Pinot Noir fruit is sourced from two of the six sub-AVA’s of the Willamette Valley, as well as out of the Umpqua Valley. The Rogue Valley is sourced for warm-weather grape varietals, such as Pinot Blanc, Viognier, and Syrah. This sourcing allows Torii Mor to capitalize on the diversity of, not only the region, but the state as a whole.
The estate vineyard of Torii Mor was planted in 1972, making it one of the oldest vineyards in the Willamette Valley. Planted by Jim McDaniel, it was purchased in 1985 by Donald Olson. Located at 800 feet, high in the Dundee Hills, this site is benefited by warm southern exposure and cool evening breezes. Several clones of Pinot Noir are grown on-site as well as a small amount of Chardonnay and Pinot Gris. Currently, 5.3 acres are planted with the Pommard clone of Pinot Noir, with a small portion dedicated to the Wadenswil clone. In April of 2002, 1.7 acres of Chardonnay were grafted to the Dijon 667 clone and a small planting of Gamay was grafted to Dijon 114. Additionally, one acre is devoted entirely to Pinot Gris. The soil type is exclusively Jory series with vine spacing of 9×6 feet. All vines are maintained by hand and pruned in the “double Guyot” style, in which one cane from each side of the trunk head is trained onto a wire. This type of cane training is known as v.s.p (vertical shoot positioning).