Destination Woodinville Sunday Tour - Part Five @WineWoodinville


Part Five: Sunday Tour of the Warehouse District

Located in the Sammamish River Valley, Woodinville is about a 30 minute drive from downtown Seattle. It is a beautiful wine country destination, home to 110 wineries and tasting rooms representing every AVA in Washington. Wine country in Woodinville, Washington once represented wine labels disconnected from faces and place. No longer. I've been there and experienced what I now embrace as a significant Washington wine destination.

"Go visit Woodinville..."

If you missed the first posts in this series I'm re-counting my first visit to Woodinville Wine Country. Read the Introduction, Woodinville a First Weekend, "No Longer Strangers" if you missed it.

This post is about the wineries, people and places visited on Sunday in the Warehouse District. The previous post, Saturday Touring Woodinville Wine Country, I shared my experience visiting Woodinville wineries in the Hollywood District.

*Note: Woodinville Wineries are located in two main areas: The Warehouse Winery District (north) and the Hollywood Winery District (south) - the West Valley Winery District is in the middle with only three wineries listed. Reference the Woodinville Wine Country maps for a view of these districts and wineries.

Slowly rising, enjoying the comforts of Willows Lodge.
Sunday Morning

My last morning in Woodinville was leisurely paced. With Brunch scheduled for 10 am I was in no rush to rise early. I indulged in the comfort of the bed and room in the Willows Lodge. After a cup of coffee on the balcony, I packed up my luggage and went down for brunch at the Barking Frog.

As I mentioned in part three Willows Lodge and Spa + Wine Director Interview, I discovered that my camera memory card was full. I spent brunch transferring images from the memory card to my laptop. So I have no photos of the delicious brunch we enjoyed at the Barking Frog. I'll do better next time. I do have photos of the wineries we visited after lunch. There was not a lot of time to visit more than a few wineries in the Warehouse District. The wineries we did visit impressed.

Only a few of the many tasting rooms and wineries.

Woodinville Warehouse District

In this part of Woodinville the wineries and tasting rooms are located in a warehouses district. Many of the tasting rooms and wineries are not fancy on the outside, but as I learned, fantastic on the inside. Filled with almost 50 wineries/tasting rooms, the Warehouse District provides many opportunities to explore over many weekends. We only had a couple of hours to visit this part of Woodinville. There's a lot to discover.

*Note: Most tasting rooms are open on the weekends. Print a copy of the Woodinville Warehouse District map and create a walking itinerary before you visit. Plan on visiting 3 - 6 wineries per day. You may want to review my "Tasting Room Etiquette" page if you have not visited many tasting rooms.

Kevin Correll, Owner/Winemaker, Barrage Cellars.
1. Barrage Cellars
19501 144th Ave NE Suite E-800, Woodinville, WA 98072
Weekdays by appointment, Saturday 1-5, Sunday 1-5
PHONE (425) 381-9675
www.barragecellars.com

Sunday is the day to go wine tasting. Typically only the serious wine aficionado is out and about wine tasting on a Sunday. Expect fewer and more focused visitors. Which is what we were when we stopped by Barrage Cellars. Barrage Cellars is another new to me winery. Checking facebook, I have 15 mutual friends who already knew the good news about Barrage Cellars.

2009 Secret Weapon 100% Syrah.

Kevin Correll, owner/winemaker, makes wine in the true "Garagistes" fashion with a focus on terroir and 100% varietals. Yes, Kevin began making wine in his garage. His first barrel production was made in a winery that was a remodeled barn. That's how he named the winery "BARRAGE." Barrage Cellars has been open in the Woodinville warehouse district since August 2008.

Kevin Correll, Owner/Winemaker, Barrage Cellars.

Kevin took time to visit with us as he poured several of his wines. He began with a Chardonnay followed by a Malbec. He focuses on making wines with 100% varietal. As I learned, he makes big, tasty wines. Awesome wines. Serious wines. His Syrah, he poured two and both Cabernet Francs truly impressed. Pow! Try Barrage Cellars, this winemaker may stun you and challenge your perception of how Washington wines drink. Impressive.

Nuclear Blonde - 100% Chardonnay.
2010 Malbec, Red Mountain.
2009 Outcast 100% Cabernet Franc.
2009 Cabernet Franc Alias Bacchus Vineyard.

From garage to Woodinville winemaker, Kevin still has his day job at Boeing, but his passion is making gorgeous wine. He is producing 2,000 cases a year, on the side mind you. I strongly encourage you to visit this winery.


2. Patterson Cellars
19501 144th Avenue NE, D-600 Woodinville 98072
Warehouse Winery: Saturday & Sunday 12-5 pm
Hollywood Tasting Room: Monday - Thursday 12-6 pm,
Friday & Saturday 12-7 pm, Sunday 12-5 PM.
PHONE (425) 483-8600
www.pattersoncellars.com

photo
Winemaker John Patterson.

Winemaker John Patterson impressed me when I first met him at the Friday night RESERVE wine tasting. It was also a pleasure to have dinner with him Saturday evening at Covington Cellars. The opportunity to visit with him at his winery was gravy.

Melange Blanc 68% Chardonnay, 22% Viognier, 10% Roussanne.

John impressed me as modest, with a shy, friendly smile on his face each time I met him. It was mentioned several times to me how important John has been these last 15 years to the Woodinville wine community. He's been available to help new wineries by sharing equipment and advice. He's respected in the community and a genuine nice guy. He makes very good wine too.

2013 Rose' 83% Syrah ,17% Merlot.
2011 Tempranillo, 100% Tempranillo.
Una Volta, 67% Cabernet Franc 33% Sangiovese.
82% Cabernet Sauvignon, 9% Merlot, 9% Petit Verdot.

Patterson Cellars Cabernet Sauvignon spoke to me. Not over the top, it was big and round, with a delicious red apple finish that left me wanting more.

76% Roussanne, 14% Viognier, 10% Chenin Blanc.

The Patterson Cellars Late Harvest Roussanne was epic. Worthy of an "OMG is that good." I'm not a big sweet wine drinker, but the Patterson Cellars Late Harvest Roussanne was nectar of the gods, with a stunning long finish. You are strongly encouraged to seek out this wine.

photo
Winemaker John Patterson
Some winemakers I get instantly by tasting their wines. John makes wines true to varietal. They taste good, they taste of the grape, they put a smile on my face. I'm happy to help get the word out about this winemaker and his winery. How did I not know about him?



3. Pondera Winery
Winery and Art Gallery.

Pondera Winery is a boutique winery with an annual production of 2,000 cases. They focus primarily on Bordeaux style blends. Partners of the Pondera Winery own the Howard/Mandville Gallery in Kirkland. A constantly rotating exhibit of fine art curated by the gallery is on display in the tasting room. Enjoy Pondera wines while reflecting on the beautiful art in this combination winery and art gallery.

photo
Guided wine tasting at Pondera Winery.
Pondera Winery
19501 144th Ave NE  B400
Woodinville, WA  98072
425-486-8500
Regular Tasting Room Hours Friday 3-7pm
Saturday & Sunday  Noon-5pm
www.ponderawinery.com

Paintings and sculptures on display and for sale.


I was captivated by the paintings of Leslie Balleweg, they reminded me of the urban-fantasy books by Charles DeLint. Works on display are by Northwest or nationally known artists and are available for purchase.  To view the gallery’s entire collection you may visit in person or on line at www.howardmandville.com.

photo
Shane Howard, Winemaker.
Winemaker Shane Howard personally guided us through a tasting of his wines. Beautifully balanced and delicious, Shane is earning well deserved accolades. I encourage you to seek out Pondera wines.

Cabernet, Merlot and Cab Franc blend.
100%  Cabernet Franc.
100% Malbec.
Cab Sauv. (59%) Merlot (17%), Cab Franc (12%), Malbec (7%) Petit Verdot (5%) 
Cabernet Sauvignon, Merlot, Cabernet Franc, Petit Verdot and Malbec.
Merlot backbone with Cabernet Franc, Malbec and Cab Sauv.
*Note: This year marks the debut of Prima Donna. This label is reserved for the wine that winemaker Shane Howard judges to be his best blend of the year.

My personal interests in art were stimulated by this winery. While I was enjoying tasting the Pondera wines, I was also craving a potters wheel and a bag of clay. There's a cool vibe in this tasting room cum art gallery. A perfect destination to relax and savor wine and art. I felt quite at home here. Recommended for wine, art and for reflection.

Wrapping Up

I made many new friends in Woodinville over the weekend. Friends I intend to keep close. They know what is happening in Woodinville and they appreciate wine as much as I do. This was a wonderful visit and enlightening experience. I will be back.

Outline: Destination Woodinville Wine Country

Addendum: Understanding a Columbia Valley Bias

As I mentioned and re-iterated in my previous four posts about visiting Woodinville Wine Country, I had a bias against Woodinville. As I wrap up this five part series I want you to understand where my bias originated and why I originally had little interest in visiting Woodinville.

Where the Grapes are Grown

Since 1986 I have lived in the semi-arid desert of Eastern Washington’s Columbia Valley. That's when I began to appreciate Washington wine. For the last 28 years I have witnessed the growth of the Washington wine industry. An industry flourishing almost in my backyard. My recognition of the efforts of growers and winemakers has increased over the years, as has my appreciation for wine. Admittedly, a little attitude developed regarding my home in the desert. I live where the grapes are grown.

Eastern Washington lies in the rain shadow of the Cascade Mountain range.

Klipsun Vineyards, Red Mountain AVA in the Columbia Valley.

Woodinville is west of the Cascade Mountains and receives about 48 inches of rain a year. The Columbia Valley, to the east of the Cascades, has an annual rainfall of 6-8 inches. You need about 22" of annual rainfall to grow good grapes. Woodinville is too wet to grow grapes.

With vineyard temperatures typically reaching the mid to upper 80’s in the Columbia Valley during summer days and a temperature differential of around 30 degrees in the evenings, our warm desert days ripen the grapes and the cool nights protect the grapes natural acidity. Irrigation is essential and plays a significant role in water management and vine stress. Factor in dermabrasion from the summer winds and soil deposits from the Missoula Floods and you have the realized potential for a world class wine growing region. That's why grapes are grown in the Columbia Valley. We take pride in the talent of our local growers.

My opinion has changed for the better regarding Woodinville as a wine country destination. Woodinville Winemakers have shown me their passion and deep appreciation for the fruit lovingly grown in Eastern Washington. You will find Woodinville wines made from the best fruit representing every Washington AVA. The proof is in the barrel and the bottle. Go visit Woodinville is now my message.

*Note: Read the Washington State Wine Commissions "State Facts" for current information on Vineyards, Varietals, AVA's, acreage, winery growth and economic impact.

Cheers!

Comments

Best of the last year

Catalunya a Return Home

Wines of Lodi, California, Re-Discovered Wine Country

2015 Tall Sage Chardonnay and Cabernet Sauvignon, Columbia Valley AVA