Now a True Destination Location
The city of Woodinville, located northeast of Seattle and an easy, 90-minutes-or-less drive from the North Sound, has become a mecca for Washington wineries, with more than 110 tasting rooms in the area.
But Woodinville isn’t just for wine enthusiasts. With plenty of breweries, distilleries, and restaurants also nearby, the city has broadened its appeal as a destination location.
WINERIES: SOMETHING FOR EVERYONE
Chateau Ste. Michelle Winery offers the “Art of Blending Experience,” an informal class hosted by wine educator Laura Kasser. Participants can customize their own red blend from six Bordeaux varietals and take a finished bottle along with them.
Pam Adkins, winemaker/owner at Adrice Wines, opened her winery near Woodinville’s Warehouse District in 2016, and likes to work with Italian based varietals whenever possible.
Try her 2016 Nebbiolo, an Old-World style red she refers to as her “pizza wine,” or the 2016 Montepulciano, a rare-to-Washington varietal with delicious, chocolate/cherry flavors and currently available at the tasting room.
At nearby Avennia, winemaker Chris Peterson draws on some of the state’s finest vineyard sources for his wines. His red blends are outstanding, and include a perfectly balanced Grenache Mourvèdre-Syrah trio of grapes in the 2016 Justine and the Cabernet Sauvignon-Merlot-Cabernet Franc 2016 Gravura.
Red wine lovers will also enjoy a visit to JM Cellars, where husband-and wife owners John and Peggy Bigelow will greet you with a smile and stellar, handcrafted wines.
Take a stroll through the winery’s private arboretum and enjoy a glass of JM Cellars’ crown jewel, the just-released 2016 Tre Fanciulli. This blend of Cabernet Sauvignon, Merlot, and Syrah is packed with juicy black cherry fruit, nuances of minerality, and great finishing acidity.
And for those who might enjoy a little art with their wine, a stop at Pondera Winery is a must. The winery shares a space with Howard/ Mandville Art Gallery and features a collection of excellent wines with eye-catching labels.
Pondera winemaker Shane Howard’s 2014 Entourage is a beautifully crafted blend of five Bordeaux red varietals; and white wine drinkers will enjoy his delicious 2017 Viognier, a stainless steel-fermented mouthful of stone fruit flavors.
Purple Café is a great venue for either lunch or dinner with a well-rounded menu of salads, sandwiches, pastas, and a must-try Fillet Mignon.
Purple really shines with its list of wine flights; three 2.5 ounce pours of reds, whites or mixed trios, many sourced from local wineries.
Heritage Restaurant and Bar is a favorite with Woodinville locals, and with good reason. Chef/owner Breanna Beike has created a welcoming venue with a moderate prices and lovingly prepared attention-to-detail culinary choices.
Her menu is based on the freshest ingredients, such as the Caramelized Sea Scallops with Parsnip Purée and Turnips. Over-the-top desserts include House-made Ice Cream and Pie in a Jar.
Willows Lodge is a superb, 84-room property located in the heart of Woodinville Wine Country. Each spacious and warmly-appointed room features an amazing list of amenities including gas fireplaces, soaking tubs, and a patio or balcony.
The Lodge also offers an in-house spa, and drinking and dining options at the Fireside Lounge or Barking Frog restaurant.
The Lodge’s impeccable service may tempt you to linger at the hotel. Just remember, there’s a world of other things to do in Woodinville Wine Country that are certain to make your visit a memorable one.
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