When you think of ‘wine’, you might not automatically think of Washington wineries or wine. However, did you know Washington state ranks only behind California when it comes to wine production in the United States? The Evergreen State safely outpaces New York and its famous Finger Lakes region, as well as other notables such as Michigan and Vermont.
With nearly 1,000 wineries around Washington state, it can be hard to visit them all! Here are some of our favorites wineries around Washington state.
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Washington Wine Facts
Washington vineyards use about 70 varieties of grapes to create their wines, with the vinifera grape being the most popular. Red grapes make up about 60 percent of vineyards’ production. Washington is also known for apple wines.
And if you thought you only could love wines from Europe, consider trying Washington wines! According to Washington State Wines, “the angle of the sun is similar to the great wine regions of Northern Europe, as they share similar latitudes.” With all of those fun Washington wine facts, let’s get on to some of the best wineries around Washington state.
8 of the Top Washington Wineries
1. Townshend Cellar – Green Bluff
Townshend Cellar is a family owned and operated winery at one of our favorite places, Green Bluff! Townshend has a full selection of wine (find Townshend’s full tasting menu here) and panoramic views of Mt. Spokane. The tasting fee is $5 for a tasting of six wines per person. Tasting fee is waived with a purchase of $20 or more per person.
Open Friday through Sunday from 12 pm to 5 pm.
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2. Trezzi Farms – Green Bluff
Trezzi Farms tasting room is a converted tractor barn and features a roll up glass garage door with panoramic views of the vineyards and mountains.
For tasting room fees and hours of operation, visit the Trezzi Farm Estate Winery website here.
3. Maryhill Winery – Goldendale
Maryhill Winery has a location in Goldendale, 100 miles east of Portland, OR. Their 3,000 sq. ft. tasting room has a view of Mt. Hood and offers small plates in addition to wine tasting, like bruschetta, salads, pizza and more.
There is a tasting fee of $15 and may be applied to a $25 purchase. There is also a Maryhill Winery tasting location in Kendall Yards – right in Spokane!
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4. Chateau Ste. Michelle Winery – Woodinville
As the state’s oldest winery, Chateau Ste. Michelle may also be the closest thing to an Italian winery in Washington. The chateau came about following a 1954 merger between the National Wine Company and Pomerelle Wine Company, which raised a variety of fruit. Together, they became the American Wine Company. Nearly seven decades later, Chateau Ste. Michelle is also the state’s top-selling winery, producing some of the best Riesling in the country. With reds such as cabernet sauvignon and merlot, Chateau Ste. Michelle Winery maintains its ranking annually.
Located on more than 100 wooded acres, the French-style mansion entices wine enthusiasts to explore the grounds, as well as sample wines. Order a flight of five of the winery’s best wines and taste why Chateau Ste. Michelle Winery is among the best in the country. The winery also offers a tour of its estate, including a look at its winemaking process, which also includes wine tasting. The winery is available for special events.
5. Quilceda Creek – Snohomish
Focused on producing world-class cabernet sauvignon, Quilceda Creek in Snohomish has earned a reputation as one of Washington’s top wineries since beginning operations in 1978. Alex and Jeannette Golitzin’s winery is considered among the older wineries in the state. Alex seemed destined to open his own winery, with his family’s winemaking history dating to the late 1800s as an ancestor is credited with creating Russian Riesling.
While most wineries and vineyards offer a variety of reds and whites, Quilceda Creek wagered its success on red wines, cabernet specifically. It has paid off well, as the winery has been recognized internationally for its cabernet sauvignon. Creating some of the best wine in the region, Quilceda Creek sources its grapes from five area vineyards. The winery offers private tours and tastings for groups of up to six people by appointment. They are hosted by a Level II sommelier.
6. Long Shadows Vintners – Walla Walla
The Columbia Valley is considered one of the best grape-growing regions in the world. Located on the east side of the state, along the Columbia River, the geography and climate create a perfect spot for raising a variety of grapes. The Benches, geologic formations created about 20,000 years ago, reach up to 1,400 feet from the river’s shoreline. The view is amazing, as you can stand on the Washington side and see green leaves with grapes growing on them while across the river, the land seems barren, with little to no vegetation.
The climate of the Benches provides the perfect setting for Long Shadow Vintners in growing different grapes. At the top, with cooler temperatures, white grapes are raised, which are perfect for Riesling and chardonnay wines. The middle region produces grapes for wines such as merlot and cabernet franc. Near the river’s shoreline, with the hottest temperatures, grapes are ideal for cabernet sauvignon and other reds wines.
Long Shadows Vintners, founded by former Chateau Ste. Michelle Winery executive Allen Shoup in 2003, is a collection of seven special wines, from cabernet sauvignon to Riesling. The name “Long Shadows” is based on experts who travel to Washington to create their wines and showcase the region. Long Shadows Vintners has two tasting rooms, at its Walla Walla winery featuring art by Tacoma artist Dale Chihuly and in Woodinville. Reservations are recommended.
7. Olympic Cellars – Port Angeles
Combining a trip to Olympic National Park and a stop at Olympic Cellars go together like a peanut butter and jelly sandwich. Take in some of the beautiful nature views near Hurricane Ridge and then stop for a tasting of up to five wines. The boutique winery produces its own wine onsite, using grapes sourced from eastern Washington vineyards. Opened in 1979, the heritage winery has seen a unique set of ownership through the years. Founded by Gene Neuharth, the winery has been owned by an all-women team, as well as family-owned.
Visitors to the winery enjoy an impressive view of century-old buildings at the foot of the Olympic Mountains. With its tasting room in a barn, wine enthusiasts can enjoy red and white wines under a variety of labels, including Working Girls, Olympic Cellars and Dungeness (which dates back to the early days of the winery). Olympic Cellars was the first winery to open on the Olympic peninsula.
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8. Spoiled Dog Winery – Whidbey Island
Founded in 2003 by dog lovers Jack and Karen Krug, Spoiled Dog Winery encourages wine aficionados to bring their canine friends along for a visit (though, they are restricted to the patio area). Whidbey Island has long been known for being a white grape-growing region, but Karen loved pinot noir and so Spoiled Dog Winery has worked in earnest over the years to create one of the state’s best red wines. They believe the maritime climate provides a nice area for growing grapes. Today, the winery is proud of its estate pinot noir luscious red wine.
The Krugs’ son and daughter-in-law joined the team a few years ago and the entire family works to produce outstanding wines, such as white wines pinot gris and sauvignon blanc, sourcing grapes from vineyards in some of the best growing regions in Washington, such as the Columbia Valley and Yakima Valley. Red wines are produced from grapes grown in their vineyards (pinot noir), as well as sourced from other vineyards to create wines like merlot and Malbec. The winery also offers an apple-pear wine, from fruits raised on their small orchard.
Spoiled Dog Winery offers tasting sessions Wednesday-Sunday. For groups of eight or more, reservations are required.
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As Washington continues to grow among the nation’s best wine-producing states, wineries will continue to develop and join the fold. In the meantime, the state has a plethora of outstanding wineries to entice wine enthusiasts to sample some of the finest wines in the United States, even the world. Enjoy your next visit to your favorite winery.
If you’re looking for even more wineries in Washington, check out this video on wine tasting in Leavenworth: