About | Balsall Creek

It takes a lot of things to make great wine—a sincere respect for the land; a mastery of the craft; a love of wine, of course; and a passion for all of it. When these things come together as a whole, the experience is extraordinary.

Our Family

FOUNDERS JON AND LESLI OWENS have deep roots in Oregon, spanning eight generations in the state. In 1850, Jon’s great, great, great grandfather moved his family west on the Oregon Trail, settling in what was then the Oregon Territory, just north of the Chehalem Mountains about 15 miles from where our vineyard is today. With a family history of farming in the Willamette Valley, it’s no wonder our vineyard thrives here.

In the 1990’s, Jon and Lesli lived in Europe, and have traveled extensively around the world over the past few decades. Those travels gave them the opportunity to visit vineyards and wineries in France, Italy, Chile, South Africa and Australia, as well as Oregon, California and Washington. This has allowed the family to grow a great appreciation for both how wine is produced around the world and how fortunate we are in Oregon to have the Willamette Valley.

As a multi-generational family business, Jon and Lesli’s son James Owens, their daughter Emily Yensen, and their son-in-law, Zac Yensen all play active roles in the company and will share in its ownership.

Our family tree, of course, is what connects us at the core, but, as with every family, we each have our own passions—especially when it comes to wine! Lesli is a white wine connoisseur and looks forward to providing a flight of different white wines to tasting room patrons. Jon has explored opportunities in the wine industry for 20 years and is excited to finally have the time to devote to making this family dream a reality. Emily’s dreams came true with a vineyard that had the grapes necessary for producing a traditional Champagne-style sparkling wine. Inspired by his love for science, James was a geology major in college, focusing his capstone project on how various earth events created such a rich soil for the Willamette Valley to grow the wines that it does. And for Zac, it’s that soil and its ability to grow a vast, healthy varietal offering in a single plot of land that interests him most.

Our Brand

LOCATED JUST NORTH OF THE DUNDEE HILLS IN OREGON’S WILLAMETTE VALLEY, Balsall Creek Vineyard is situated on 35 acres of bucolic farmland within the Chehalem Mountain AVA. We focus primarily on producing exceptional quality Pinot Noir and Chardonnay wines but also cultivate an array of unique grape varietals which include Gamay Noir, Sauvignon Blanc, Aligoté and Pinot Meunier.

With special attention to sustainability and preserving the environment, we’re committed to using organic farming practices. Our vineyard is both Live Certified and Salmon Safe Certified, dry-farmed and hand-harvested, and we are currently producing solar energy with a goal to produce more than we consume. Our wines are barreled and bottled with NW Wine Company, and we work throughout the year with our winemaker, Laurent Montalieu, to design and execute true Burgundian-style wines.

We thank you for visiting us here at Balsall Creek Vineyard. From our family to yours, sustainability, exceptional quality, and a premium location is the promise we make to you in every bottle of Balsall Creek wine.

Our Team

Jon and Lesli Owens
Co-Founders and Co-Owners

Emily Yensen
Director of Marketing and Sales

James Owens
Director of Logistics and Facilities

Zac Yensen
Director of Finance and Business Operations

Clint Smith
Director of Hospitality

Ann Nualsirisakul
Culinary Lead

Jason Hilton
Vineyard Lead

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