Rocky Knoll’s grapes grow in one of the region’s prime locations, a prominent knoll bordering the Cascade foothills on the east slope of the Rogue Valley. Clay soil low on the flanks of the hill quickly yields to the rocky, sandy loam that characterizes most of the vineyard. The vines progress halfway up the hillside below exposed sandstone outcroppings.

Rocky Knoll is located in one of the hottest and driest parts of the valley, in turn the hottest part of southern Oregon. The region benefits from a climate similar to that of the Bordeaux and Mediterranean regions famed for their wines. The winter is rainy, with cool temperatures moderated by the ocean. Summer's arid, hot days and cool nights continue well into the fall, perfect for complete fruit maturation. Both our bud break and harvest are earlier than most of the Rogue Valley’s vineyards, allowing careful management and selection during the ripening process.

Dunbar Carpenter planted the original vineyard in the mid-1970s and it has been added to over the years. In keeping with the experimentation of the region’s early grape growers, the vineyard was terraced east to west, a laborious process that yielded a distinctive vineyard and distinctive fruit. The vines, a combination of Cabernet Franc, Cabernet Sauvignon and Merlot, now range from nearly thirty years old to eleven years old, offering a complexity of character unparalleled in the Rogue Valley. Young, ripe, and fruity tannins emblematic of the best Southern Oregon wines are integrated with the dark, aged full body of the older vine fruit, rewarding creativity on the part of the winemaker. The wines are forward and complex, distinguished by their black fruit and lingering finish.