For many visitors to Seattle, it comes as a surprise to learn that the bulk of our state’s top wine tasting rooms are located just 30 minutes from downtown. Woodinville, Washington, is home to upwards of 80 wineries, making it an excellent daytrip not just for wine appreciators, but those of you seeking bucolic respite from the city.
We are going to take a day trip to go wine tasting in Woodinville. As Washington’s first winery, Chateau Ste. Michelle is the natural place to start. Ste. Michelle is one of the few wineries in Woodinville flanked by a small, charming acreage of vineyards. These, though, are mostly for show; Woodinville wines are generally made from grapes grown in the arid Columbia Valley, at least 4 hours to the east.
We will meet at 10:30am outside the gift shop of Chateau Ste. Michelle and take a tour at 11am to get a behind-the-scenes glimpse at winemaking. After the tour and tasting, we will head up to the town’s Warehouse District which you will find dozens of sandwich boards directing you to entire office parks filled with wineries. Yes, office parks filled with wineries! Many of these wineries were started by people just like you who stopped by the area one day, made friends and got bitten by the bug.
Next stop will be the Hollywood Schoolhouse, an area thrumming with wineries and tasting rooms. Each has their own unique flavor and feel with many satellite tasting rooms for eastern Washington wineries, allowing you to travel through all of the state’s growing regions in one small spot.