The Woodinville Wine Experience
During a recent visit to Seattle we tagged on a few extra days but didn’t have the time to trek all the way to Walla Walla – however, we were in luck. A mere half hour away Woodinville offers 108 wineries and tasting rooms. Our plan was to reduce our mileage and invest that extra time into tasting wine.
If you are a wine tourist, Woodinville will most likely be a different type of experience. Unlike the Silverado Wine Trail in Napa Valley, you won’t be trekking from one destination winery to another. Instead, this is more like the Lompoc Wine Ghetto – storefronts where there is a tasting room and sometimes a production room in the back. With a few exceptions, you won’t be strolling garden paths to granite and glass edifices.
The Warehouse District
A common site is a three-foot tall sandwich board sign with the name of a winery and an arrow pointing the way. At one stop in the Warehouse District we saw 20 such signs lined up on the road.
The outsides are typically what you might expect of a strip mall business, except for the signs advertising wine inside. It’s not uncommon for wineries to share space as was the case with our first stop where three tasting rooms were co-located, each with a small bar set up.
Our first taste was Convergence Zone Cellars, for us it was the convergence of luck and our location. CZ was on my long list of places to visit and after blundering around with directions we spotted a sign and stopped in.
Convergence Zone Cellars
We sampled the 2013 Dewpoint, a Riesling with 1.6% residual sugar, and Drizzle, a Pinot Gris with 2.2% residual sugar. While they were okay, our favorite was the 2013 Mistral, a Grenache-based blend with Syrah and Mourvedre. This offered great flavors of fresh macerated berries.
Chris is enchanted with Bordeaux wines – and so are we. The 2013 Gravuva blend, is an almost even blend of Cabernet Sauvignon and Merlot with a dollop of Cabernet Franc.
The highlight of the tasting was the 2013 Sestina, which is a Left Bank Bordeaux blend driven by 73% Cabernet Sauvignon, 16% Merlot and 9% Cab Franc. Chris calls this a 15-year wine – but we don’t think we can wait that long for the bottle we purchased.
Chris calls his wine style vineyard driven. “I want to show off the terroir,” he said. “I want to let the wine express itself.”
Woodinville is a kaleidoscope of wine. We’ll take another look through the lens later this week in our second installment.