Northwest is the website for Avalon Wine Inc. which was founded as a bed and breakfast in Oregon and soon evolved into a retail store in Corvallis, specializing in Oregon and Washington wines.

This site was launched in 1999 with featured articles, interviews, columns, wine reviews as well as an e-commerce site.

In 2013, longtime employees Marcus Looze and Andy Osterhaus purchased Avalon and moved it to The Bindery in Portland, an eclectic urban space with a variety of retail stores and a winery in the basement.

The online retail site is the basic stripped down model with very little hype. Wines are listed by varietal, Top Rated, New, Bargain, and We Love. Simple with no additional sorting by this or by that.

What you get here is a detailed comment about each wine with a concise tasting note. You can click on a particular winery profile which provides excellent background about the winery and the people.

There is also a list of bargains from Oregon and Washington that is updated each week, as is the list of new releases.

However, the most useful list here is under the heading of wines “We Love,” the owners favorites that they explain are wines they take home and enjoy.

Discounts average 10-15%, except for the bargains listed which are closer to 20%.

This is a very specialized site for anyone interested in wines from the Northwest. The information offered about Oregon and Wash wines is very personal as they owners come across as well-informed and up to speed.

 They also know many people involved as evidenced by this remark:”Leave it to McKinlay’s proprietor, head farmer, and winemaker Matt Kinne to make one of Oregon’s best Chardonnays and sell it for peanuts. We’ve referred to Matt as the pickiest winemaker in the Willamette Valley.”

Except for the omission of cult wines such as Leonetti, Cayuse, and Quilceda Creek,  the number of wineries covered is extensive. They sell from such hard to find wineries as Andrew Will and Owen Roe.

It was also interesting to see a few truly unsung wines like the Bookwalter 2015 Old Vine Chenin Blanc being singled out and described so enthusiastically: “This wine absolutely rocked us. It is one of the most thrilling Northwest white wines we've tasted in our combined 16 years of tasting.”

Pros: Shipping considerations...
If the temperatures here, at the shipping address, or along the shipping route are above 80 degrees or below 32 degrees, we will not ship your order. If there are delays unrelated to weather, we will contact you by email within 5 business days.

Avalon will cellar your wine purchases for a reasonable period of time if the weather is too hot or too cold, or longer if extreme conditions or locations demand it.

Cons: Not any price breaks in shipping costs.