Sign In


Latest News
The Best Woodinville Wineries to Visit Right Now

The Best Woodinville Wineries to Visit Right Now

Located a 30-minute drive northeast of Seattle in the Sammamish River Valley, Woodinville has been a hub for Washington State wine production and tasting for decades. Home to Chateau Ste. Michelle, the state’s oldest winery, Woodinville has continued to attract producers. Notably, it’s also home to satellite tasting rooms for wineries from across the state. In recent years, the small town—population 13,000—has also become a world-class destination for tourists with new distilleries, breweries, cideries and restaurants dishing up excellent cuisine.

You May Also Like: This Washington Wine Region is Becoming a ‘World Class Tourism Destination

With more than 130 wineries and tasting rooms located within a six-mile radius, this is the most accessible destination to taste a variety of Washington wines in one place. Woodinville has four main districts—the Hollywood, West Valley, Downtown and Warehouse districts. However, because so many tasting rooms are within minutes of each other, hopping between them is easy. For the best suggestions on where to sip, eat and stay, we spoke to local industry insiders for their top picks.

You May Also Like: An Armchair Traveler’s Guide to Washington State’s Wine Country

Image Courtesy of Long Shadows Vintners

When Breanna Beike, chef and owner of Heritage Restaurant + Bar, has people visiting from out of town, she takes them to Long Shadows. “They’re a class act,” she says. The Walla Walla–based winery highlights international winemakers who use Washington grapes to make everything from full-bodied red blends to refreshing dry Rieslings. The tasting room’s design is also a draw. “Soaring ceilings, a double-sided copper-cased fireplace, a dramatic backlit bar and grand piano make you want to stay a while,” says Kevin King, food and beverage manager for The Lodge at St. Edward Park in the nearby city of Kenmore. 

Where to Eat: Purple Café

Dine on baked brie, short rib pasta, chicken Marsala or bacon-wrapped meatloaf at this area favorite. It offers a relaxed atmosphere with a massive wine bar as the backdrop, and al fresco dining on its patio. Finish your meal with a glass of tawny Port paired with sea salt caramels.

De Lille Cellars
Image Courtesy of De Lille Cellars

Housed in the old Redhook Brewery, DeLille has transformed an industrial space into a refined experience. “DeLille represents some of the richest, biggest wines made in Woodinville,” says master sommelier and owner of Bellevue’s Fruit Wine Co. Bottle Shop Jackson Rohrbaugh. The spacious tasting room is great for first-timers to Woodinville, he adds. Choose from wine-tasting, classes, a winery tour and food-pairing experience. Rohrbaugh notes that the Chaleur Estate Blanc, a Bordeaux-style white, is a can’t-miss bottle.

Where to Eat: The Restaurant at DeLille

The winery’s own restaurant is a worthwhile destination in and of itself. It serves breakfast, lunch and dinner in a modern space with ample natural light and, weather permitting, on its deck. Find Pacific Northwest–inspired cuisine, including housemade pasta and market-fresh fish and beef. 

Image Courtesy of Fidélitas

While the multi-generational winery’s estate tasting room is in the Red Mountain AVA in eastern Washington, this location offers what winemaker Andrew Januik says are some of the best wines not just from Red Mountain, but from anywhere in the Columbia Valley. The Blackwood Canyon Cabernet Sauvignon is a must-sip. Book a tasting flight inside the modern tasting room or outside on the patio.

Where to Eat: Pintxo by Valdemar  

Operated by the Walla Walla winery Valdemar Estates, Pintxo serves up Spanish-style tapas in a Euro-chic space. Taste wines by the flight, glass or bottle and pair them with small plates such as Wagyu carpaccio and croquetas. “Everything is done with panache here,” Rohrbaugh says.

Taste wines made from sustainably-grown Columbia Valley grapes at this charming—and relatively new—roadside tasting room. By hiring the winemakers from the famed Quilceda Creek, “Matthews created one of the most talent-stacked winemaking teams in the whole state,” Rohrbaugh says. The best seat in the house is under an umbrella on the lush green lawn. You can also head next door to try whites and rosé from the winery’s sister label, Jaine.

Where to Eat: Heritage Restaurant + Bar

For a comfortable, neighborhood feel, head to Heritage. On the menu, find everything from whole trout and citrus honey-brined half chicken to Hama Hama oysters and Manila clams. 

For a dark, sultry atmosphere, Darby is it. The winery makes low-intervention bottles from grapes sourced across Washington, including Rhône varietals from the state’s iconic Boushey Vineyard. Beike says the tasting room space is posh and incredibly inviting with velvet sofas, plenty of candlelight and a hidden speakeasy that plays vintage vinyl records. “The staff is wonderful and the Sauvignon Blanc is stellar,” she adds.

Where to Eat: Fireside Lounge

This Willows Lodge dining space keeps things casual. Grab an indoor seat by the bar or outside in the lush garden. The menu features twists on classic comfort food with a seasonal focus. Try the crab melt sandwich and French onion soup.

Bayernmoor Cellars
Image Courtesy of Bayernmoor Cellars

Bayernmoor’s vineyards and winery are located less than an hour’s drive to the north of its downtown Woodinville tasting room. This producer focuses on elegant wines crafted by a husband-and-wife winemaking team. Standouts include Pinot Noir grown on the western side of the Cascades in the Puget Sound AVA. The beautiful natural-light-filled tasting room is furnished with brown-leather chairs and marble tables and offers a variety of paired tasting experiences with small bites. A unique one is the Sip & Scoop Ice Cream Social, which pours wine alongside custom ice cream flavors.   

Where to Eat: Barking Frog

Exposed wood beams, a statement indoor fire table and white tablecloths make for an elegant yet approachable Northwest feel in this space. Housed in Willows Lodge, the menu is focused on seasonal cuisine highlighting local farmers and foragers, including Pure Country Farms and Taylor Shellfish for proteins along with produce from Ecolibrium Farms and Skylight Farm, both located under 20 minutes away. Open for breakfast, lunch and dinner.

Rocky Pond wines are made in Eastern Washington by female winemaker Elizabeth Keyser from estate grapes grown right along the Columbia River. Usually open until 8:00 or 9:00 p.m., it’s a great date night spot. Book a tasting or share a bottle and a charcuterie board on the patio. “Their Malbec-blends and bold reds are gaining more and more attention by the year,” King says.

Where to Eat: The Hollywood Tavern

For a fun atmosphere and community feel, head to Hollywood Tavern—a converted service station that opened in 1947. Of course, it’s had a few updates since then. Embrace the historic feel inside with walls featuring old photographs and paintings showcasing the building’s past, or snag an outdoor seat by the large fire pit. The menu features excellent burgers, sandwiches and slow-cooked pork ribs. Try the milkshakes and cocktails made with Woodinville Whiskey, which is distilled next door.

Rohrbaugh says this might be the most beautiful building in all of Woodinville; it looks like a modern art museum and frequently hosts weddings. Inside, you can peer down into the cellar and gaze at the barrels from the tasting bar, or choose a spot on the lush patio. Two independent wineries, Novelty Hill and Januik, share the space—you’ll find incredible Red Mountain Cabernet along with a stainless-steel aged Spring Run rosé, plus a weekend menu of pizzas and fresh oysters.

Where to Eat: Von’s 1000 Spirits

Januik says local winemakers were very excited when Von’s, a Seattle-based scratch kitchen that makes sourdough from a 75-year-old starter, opened a location in Woodinville. “Bringing both a great vibe and even better food, this has been such buoy to the entire culinary experience in town,” he says. The menu offers wood-fired pizza, handmade pasta and burgers on house-baked sourdough buns. Januik recommends ordering the smash burger made with two fresh-chopped beef patties and caramelized onions. Grab booth seating or sit at the bar, which features over 1,500 spirits. Among them are bourbon, gin and vodka from the family’s Northwest Spirits Distillery next door.

Tinte Cellars
Image Courtesy of Tinte Cellars

Want to taste with barrels full of aging wines as your backdrop? This is the place. “Tinte is making some classic, spicy Washington reds and their Woodinville tasting room is a great chance to taste their wine—from their big, powerful Malbec to their lush Bordeaux blends,” says Rohrbaugh. This winery is also mission driven: It donates a portion of wine sales to non-profits in the area.

Where to Eat: Walla Walla Steak Co.

First opened in Walla Walla, this Woodinville location serves up staples such as prime rib and ribeye with sides like truffle macaroni and cheese and twice-baked potatoes in a stylish, industrial space. Finish your meal with tableside flambéed bananas Foster.

Image Courtesy of Avennia

Step into this sleek space to try wines from Avennia’s Red Mountain estate winery. “They make delicious Bordeaux-style blends that outdrink almost everything in their category,” King says. Like their minimalist approach to winemaking, tasting-room offerings are simple; their signature or reserve tastings serve five wines apiece.

Where to Eat: Vivi Pizzeria

This Italian spot has all the classics, including five different kinds of bruschetta, hand-tossed pizzas cooked in a wood-fired oven and cioppino made with fresh, local seafood.

Willows Lodge
Image Courtesy of Willows Lodge

Willows Lodge is right next to the Sammamish River. The welcoming lobby is decked out in exposed Douglas fir beams and has a towering stone fireplace. The warm, rustic feel continues in the contemporary rooms, which have amenities like fireplaces, deep soaking tubs and private patios. Wander the gardens on the grounds or head to the hydrotherapy pool and sauna after a day of tastings.

Lodge at St. Edward Park
Image Courtesy of Lodge at St. Edward Park

An under-20-minute drive from Woodinville, The Lodge at St. Edward Park is near Lake Washington and surrounded by a 326-acre forest. Formerly a seminary dating from the 1930s, the building was renovated into an 84-room lodge in 2017. (Architecture buffs will enjoy this place.) Explore miles of trails, head to the spa or grab a drink at two on-site bars. Top Chef contestant Luke Kolpin helms the hotel’s restaurant, Cedar + Elm, which serves seasonally inspired cuisine.

The Woodmark
Image Courtesy of The Woodmark

A lakeside hotel, The Woodmark is ten miles south of Woodinville in Kirkland. Book a room with a balcony right over the water and soak in the view while sipping on a glass of wine. Prefer to head out on an adventure before or after wine tasting? Beach cruiser bikes and kayak rentals are available on-site. When you’re ready for a bite, there are four restaurants to choose from, including Como for Italian; the French-American bistro Le Grand; El Encanto, where you can enjoy red snapper ceviche and mezcal; and Carillon Kitchen, which dishes out fresh, local bites.

The Ultimate Suitcase for Wine Country

Our Vino-Voyage TSA-Approved 12-Bottle Wine Suitcase makes the perfect companion for every winery on your bucket list.

Source link

Related Posts