Just 30 minutes from the city of Seattle is a quaint little town with a big thirst for wine. Woodinville, Washington is a wine-tasting mecca of sorts for those who appreciate the nuances and charm of Washington wines. Though not many of the wine grapes actually originate from the area itself, as the wet weather that typically encases this region is not ideal for growing grapes, many wineries have established tasting rooms here and source their grapes from the drier regions of the state farther east.
Woodinville, though small, is separated into four distinct districts, each with its own offerings and personality. There are the West Valley, Downtown, Warehouse, and Hollywood Districts that make up the town. You can find wine and wine tasting in each, but today we will focus on the Hollywood District, home to some of the wine industry’s biggest names, as well as some smaller, artisanal wineries that deserve mention. Here are a few great wineries and tasting rooms in Woodinville.
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RELATED: 4 Top Wine Bars To Visit in Bellevue Washington
It’s easy to visit Woodinville while staying in the Seattle area. In fact, it’s quite possible to stay in Seattle and visit the area on a day trip. You can rent a car, or hire a driver to take you to and from the city. Keeping in mind that it’s best not to overschedule your wine visits, as you may find yourself enjoying the scenery and wanting to hang out a while at each location. It’s usually a good idea to do one tasting visit in the morning, followed by lunch, and one to two in the afternoon.
A few other methods we recommend for exploring Woodinville’s wineries:
Take a day trip that includes vists to 4 wineries with pre-arranged guided tastings, plus lunch a visit to the Snoqualmie waterfalls. Your driver will pick you up from your hotel in Seattle and all tasting fees are included.
Purchase the digital ticket “Hurray for Hollywood” wine pass from the Woodinville Wine Association. It allows you to park once and enjoy 4 award-winning wine tastings within walking distance from one another.
Skip the driving and take a guided wine tour in Woodinville operated by Bon Vivant, one of the most highly-rated tour groups in the area.
Woodinville is home to some lovely Bed and Breakfasts if you choose to stay the night and continue your tasting into the next day. One of these is called Matthews Tasting Room + Farm. At Matthews, you can taste wine in the farmhouse-chic tasting room, schedule a meal at the organic farm and outdoor kitchen and patio for a group or event, or stay the night in one of two bed and breakfast rooms. Because of its size, book far in advance. The tasting room is open daily with some exceptions, and there are rental options for large parties or those who wish to stay longer than an hour and soak in the charming farm life.
Dining in Woodinville’s Hollywood District
For a truly unique experience, look into one of the nightly seatings for a nine-course meal celebrating the cuisine of the Pacific Northwest at The Herbfarm. The Herbfarm experience covers nine courses with six matched wines all from no farther than 100 miles away. It is truly an authentically local dining experience. Each week, there is a thematic dinner, so check the site to see which themes are coming up before you book. You definitely need a reservation, but don’t be shy about asking for one last minute. The Herbfarm is accommodating and can even seat single diners at the European Common Table.
The Herbfarm also offers two romantic suites through their Willow Lodge, if you want to end your night here and stay on-site. Make sure to make these reservations in advance.
Top Woodinville Wineries To Visit
There are many wineries to enjoy a tasting while visiting Woodinville, but here are some recommendations for your time in the Hollywood District.
14421 Woodinville-Redmond Rd NE
Woodinville, WA 98072
DeLille Cellars is in the process of renovating and will open a brand new 30,000 sq. ft. tasting room and retail facility at the former Red Hook Brewery in the Fall of 2019, but until then, you may still visit and taste at the Carriage House tasting room. The new facility will have three levels of mostly seated tasting experiences for groups of various sizes. In addition, there will be a wine club rooftop deck that will have some of the best views of the Sammamish Valley and Mount Rainier.
DeLille Cellars was founded in 1992 as a pioneer in Bordeaux-style blends in Washington State. The winery can now boast over 500 individual 90+ rated wines from leading publications. The grapes are primarily sourced from the Red Mountain AVA and come from acclaimed vineyards such as Ciel du Cheval, Grand Ciel, Upchurch, Red Willow, Sagemoor, Klipsun, Boushey and Harrison Hill. Currently, you can taste wines at DeLille daily until 5PM, but reservations are required for groups of six or more.
14465 Woodinville-Redmond Rd.NE
Woodinville, WA 98072
(509) 525 1337
Dusted Valley grapes are sourced from Walla Walla, Washington, but their Woodinville tasting room offers a comfortable environment for experiencing a taste of this family-owned winery. The operation creates about 6,000 cases a year of single varietal Cabernet, Cabernet Franc, Chardonnay, and Syrah, as well as Bordeaux and Rhone-style blends.
The tasting room in Woodinville is open daily, and reservations are required for groups of eight or more. Outside the tasting room, walking paths connect the property to restaurants and other tasting rooms in the District, making Dusted Valley a convenient stop on your tasting tour through Woodinville’s Hollywood District.
14450 Redmond-Woodinville Rd NE
Woodinville, WA 98072
Darby English is a perfectionist winemaker who utilizes a minimalistic old-school approach to winemaking. He began making wine in 2002 and produced his first commercial batch in 2005. Now, the winery produces 4,000 cases a year of mainly Bordeaux and Rhone-style blends with names like Flipside and Le Deuce from some of the best vineyards in the state, such as Stonetree, Connor Lee, Stillwater Creek, Discovery, and Dineen.
Locals will refer you to go and taste at Darby Winery, as it is considered a local hidden gem. The style of this wine destination is minimalistic and authentic for Winetravelers looking for a more localized experience. At Darby, no two vintages are the same, giving visitors a different experience year after year. There is space at the winery to host a catered event for up to 60 people, including an option for winemaker, Darby English, to offer an educational presentation about the wines to guests. Note that the tasting room is closed on Tuesday and Wednesday. Contact the winery for more information on tasting and winemaker events.
Chateau Ste. Michelle
14111 NE 145th Street
Woodinville, WA 98072
Woodinville is home to Washington State’s premier pioneering winery with roots that date back to 1912 and the time before Prohibition in the United States. The estate was built on land in Woodinville that was acquired in the early 20th Century, but it was not until the late 1960’s that the winery operations revved up under famed winemaker, Andre Tchelistcheff, who introduced premium vinifera wines called Ste. Michelle Vintners. In the late ’70s, a French-style Chateau was built on the property in Woodinville, and Chateau Ste. Michelle as we know it was born.
The winery has two locations where red and white wine are made separately. White wines are produced on-site at the Woodinville winery location, while red wines are produced at the Canoe Ridge Estate Winery in Eastern Washington.
When visiting Chateau Ste. Michelle in Woodinville, reserve extra time, as this visit could last an entire afternoon. Situated on 105 beautiful wooded acres, the tasting facilities at Ste. Michelle are quite impressive. Every day, the winery offers multiple types of tasting experiences in one of its many tasting rooms, geared either toward Ste. Michelle wines, or to some of the other brands associated with the winery in its remarkable international Enoteca located upstairs in the tasting facility.
In addition to various tasting flight options, there are estate tours, blending classes, and regular winery events on the calendar. With so many activities available on-site, it may seem like you can’t possibly enjoy them all with one visit, so it’s a good idea to plan out your time at Ste. Michelle to maximize your experience in the best way that suits your tasting desires. Check the website for special events and scheduled tastings or winery activities.
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wineries to visit in Washington State, Woodinville tasting rooms: winery directory
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