experiences

Wine Tasting 30 Minutes from Seattle

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Who knew that 30 minutes outside of Seattle there are dozens of decent tasting rooms within walking distance of each other? I’ve never done any wine tastings in Washington state so did a quick search to see what my options were near Seattle and discovered Woodinville.

There are three warehouse districts to pick from and we wound up off 148th Avenue near Chateau St. Michelle because we wanted to grab lunch first.

We stopped at a cute wood-fire pizza place called The Station Pizzeria which was in, you might have guessed, and converted gas station and offers outdoor and indoor seating options.
The Station Pizzeria Woodinville interior

It’s got a fun, abet slightly slow, ambiance and the pizzas were pricey ($12-$19 for 12 inch) but exotic and worth it.

The Station Pizzeria Woodinville Keri

We tried the Two Cut Cubano, a wonder of pulled pork, cheeses, pickles, and spicy pickled banana peppers.

The Station Pizzeria Woodinville two cut cubano

The Forbidden was also good, a medley of poached pear, prosciutto di parma, pepperoni, fontina, and garlic sauce, But the fresh garlic overwhelmed the pears and the whole thing needed more salt to bring out the flavors.

The Station Pizzeria Woodinville forbidden

From there we went immediately next door to Patterson Cellars to do our first wine tasting.

Patterson Cellars Woodinville tasting menu

 

You could taste their line up 6 wines for $10 and if you made a purchase of $20+ the fee was waived. I liked the rose, but found the Forbidden to have a slightly bitter finish and the reds tasted young.

Patterson Cellars Woodinville Forbidden blend

 

Their 2012 Late Harvest Roussanne dessert wine was a nice surprise though. I dislike sweet wines except for really good Sauternes/dessert wines, and this one was packed with honey and apricot flavors and a relative bargain at $22, or $12 if you account for the tasting fee waiver.

From Patterson Cellars we went directly across the street to the Hollywood Schoolhouse Wineries building to Alexandria Nicole Cellars. They had the same tasting fee ($10) and refund with wine purchase option and a few more wines on their list.

Alexandria Nicole Cellars Woodinville tasting room

Alexandria Nicole Cellars Woodinville tasting menu

Their dry Viognier was not for me, but I was impressed with the floral flavors. Several of their reds, though young, were quite good but a touch overpriced. But what I really wanted to try was their Albarino, something I didn’t realize was grown in Washington.

It wasn’t on the tasting list, but the lady helping us was nice enough to pour us a taste. It was lower acid than I was used to but nice. They offer outdoor seating and lots of options by the glass, so I think it’s worth a stop.

From Alexandria Nicole we headed barely a half mile down the road to Matthews Winery. We had the bad fortune to arrive at the same time as a bus full of partygoers, so our tasting took a bit longer than usual, but this was by far my favorite stop.

Matthews Winery Tenor Woodinville Tasting Room

Even at $15 per person and overpriced bottles, the wine was worth it. They had a unique Sav Blanc, a not too oaky Chardonnay, and a nice Claret (also something I hadn’t tasted outside of Virginia) and several other reds. All of them are still very young, so I recommend lots of swirling or prior decanting, to fully enjoy them.

Matthews Winery Tenor Woodinville Tasting Menu

 

Their décor is less decor –barrel tables arranged in the wine floor, but very low key and enjoyable, even with the crowd. Outdoor seating is more basic picnic tables and umbrellas.

I look forward to going back and trying more options, but if, like me, you’re overwhelmed with choice, these tasting rooms are a good place to start.

Full Disclosure: I may receive affiliate credit from links in this post or on this site which will help fund my travels. Thank you for your support!

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Living for the little (and big things) that make life so fun, especially mistake deals and crazy last minute weekend mileage runs across the world. www.twitter.com/klatravel

1 Comment

  1. LauraPDX

    May 14, 2015 at 5:30 am

    We went at the end of March and stayed at a nearby Country Inn and Suites in Bothell (for a bonus points deal), and they gave us a package of wine tasting material that included free tastings at about a dozen wineries (and saved us lots of tasting fees, thank you very much). The property was old, but better than expected, and priced inexpensively. We usually stay downtown Seattle, and thought this was a great alternative.

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