Eagle Foothills AVA
Unique elements of the Eagle Foothills AVA** include:
SOIL – Soils consist of sand from volcanic ash, silt, granite pebbles and clay that are well drained and rich in mineral grains because of the sedimentary bedrock from ancient Lake Idaho and the nearby granitic mountains.
CLIMATE – The hills form south facing slopes creating hot afternoons and evening shade. The cool temperatures, short growing season and low growing-degree days allow for successful ripening of early to mid-season grape varieties, with low acidity levels. The precipitation varies between 11-18 inches per year and averages 2,418 growing days annually.
WATER – Water is abundant, despite the desert terrain of the Eagle Foothills. The AVA is located near the Snake River aquifer—one of the most productive water sources in America. The proximity to water gives Idaho potential to have sustainable vineyards for generations to come.
The Eagle Foothills sits at the north bank of Ancient Lake Idaho, its elevation ranging from 2,490 to 3,412 ft.
** An AVA, or American Viticultural Area, is a federally designated wine grape-growing region distinguishable by distinct geographic features such as climate, soil, elevation and physical features.
Idaho grape growers celebrated the close of a tumultuous harvest season. Grape crop yields were drastically less than those of 2014. Many growers attribute this to a precipitous decline in average temperatures during November of 2014, in which hard freezes severely restricted future crop potential crop for 2015. Continue »
The 2016 Idaho wine grape crop is rebounding after a negligible harvest in 2015. A November 2014 freeze sharply reduced the amount of wine grapes available for the 2015 vintage. A tremendous amount of work went in to reconstituting vineyards damaged from the Fall freeze. As a result, growers and vintners experienced 50-100% increases in crop yields in 2016 over those of 2015. Continue »
Hiding behind the foothills north of Eagle is an area filled with poor soil, sandy loam, and few marks of a prime agricultural area. Despite an environment that would be hostile to many varieties of agriculture, it’s just what many varieties of popular wine grapes love, and they’re thriving at 3 Horse Ranch Vineyards. The resulting wines have been stellar, with the winery capturing about a dozen awards for the different varieties made from the grapes growing on this unlikely fertile plain. But the secret of this hidden gem — and about a dozen other vineyards in the region — is about to be revealed... Continue »