In Woodinville Wine Country, we have some tasting rooms that are only open a few hours a week. Locals know when you see certain A-frame signs on the corners, you park the car and head in for a tasting. Here’s an insider’s itinerary to some wineries with limited hours but maximum experiences.
Starting in the Hollywood District, go just beyond the schoolhouse and you’ll discover Adams Bench. The tasting room is located next to the residence of the winemakers, Tim and Erica Blue, every visitor is greeted like a family friend. Their exclusive focus on Cabernet Sauvignon and Cab blends pays off with some impressive scores for their Red Willow Vineyard wines.
The doors are opened most Saturdays afternoons but we recommend you call ahead to double check.
From the Hollywood District, drive to Artisan Hill in Warehouse District, a place that comes alive on the weekends. This cluster of tasting rooms is a hotspot for folks who are eager to discover the up-and-coming winemakers of Woodinville. Most of the tasting rooms here are open to customers only on the weekends so it’s helpful to have an idea of which ones you want to visit before you go.
Pop into Auclair Winery, a working tasting room where Charlie Auclair launched his winery 10 years ago. A passionate world-traveler, Charlie uses his travels as inspiration for his winemaking. Auclair Winery specializes in Bordeaux varieties, highlighting the quality of their Red Mountain grapes. Hours are listed as “most Saturdays, 12-5” so calling ahead here is also advised.
Next door to Auclair Winery is DiStefano Winery, one of the oldest wineries in Woodinville. Winemaker Mark Newton has grabbed some attention recently by releasing three vermouths, becoming one of the Washington’s first vermouth producers. When you go in for a tasting, you’ll be able to sample them via a spritzer made from vermouth, sparkling water and citrus peel. A few sips will most likely convince you to bring home a bottle (or two… or three).
And you might as well make the most of your visit to the area by tasting at one more winery with weekend-only hours. Tucked away at the far end of Artisan Hill is Pomum Cellars where owner and winemaker Javier Alfonso produces Spanish wines such as Tempranillo and Albarino. In fact, in 2005, Alfonso brought the first Tempranillo vine from Spain to Washington. You’ll have a chance to taste these unique, delicious wines most weekends so plan ahead for a visit.