Russ and Mary Raney named their vineyard and winery after their honeymoon destination: England's Vale of Evesham, an idyllic fruit-growing region by the Cotswold Hills. Their house and subterranean winery overlook Evesham Woods' 12-acre vineyard, which is situated on an eastern slope of the Eola Hills, four miles northwest of Salem and within view of the Willamette River. Russ Raney was first introduced to winemaking while studying at Freiburg University (Germany), where he visited nearby vineyards in Baden and Alsace. A few years later in 1977, he earned a degree from the State Technical School of Viticulture and Oenology in Bad Kreunach, Germany. Upon returning to the U.S., he worked as wine retailer and wholesaler in St. Louis for five years before he and Mary moved to Oregon in 1983 in search of a site capable of yielding great Pinot noir. Mary studied at St. Louis University and Southern Illinois University, graduating with a degree in horticulture. She manages the winery office and provides a much appreciated different perspective in blending and bottling decisions.
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