he state of Washington is basically split into two sides: the wet side and the dry side. State-wide, 950 or so wineries are producing an array of varietals. Riesling and Chardonnay are the heavyweights on the white side, and Cabernet, Merlot, and Syrah on the red.
Seattle & Woodinville Both SODO Urban Works in Seattle and Woodinville’s Warehouse District are where you get the fun of tasting wine, then choosing the great bottles to take away that can become thoughtful gifts. Downtown Seattle’s SODO is the epicenter of the urban winery scene. Within the industrial complex are 10 tasting rooms including Rôtie Cellars, which applies traditional Rhône Valley techniques to Washington fruit. Enjoy a drinking break nearby at the flagship showroom for Filson, featuring exquisitely rustic items such as salvaged wood, ironwork, and local art. Behind-the-scenes tours are offered by appointment. About 15 miles north of Seattle, you can taste wines from many Washington appellations in one spot. Woodinville’s 120-plus tasting rooms also include cideries, distilleries, and breweries.
Diversions for Pacific Northwest The three Cs: cheese, chocolate, and Chardonnay gather in Central Point’s Artisan Corridor. Famed cheesery Rogue Creamery is joined by truffle-maker Lillie Belle Farms and Ledger David Cellars. Foodies worship Jacobsen Salt, made from the cold and pristine waters of Netarts Bay on the Oregon Coast since 2011. Visit its charming tasting rooms in Netarts or Portland. The Brigittine Monks have mastered the craft of chocolate, whipping up heavenly, made-in-Oregon fudge and truffles in their monastery in the Willamette town of Amity.
TOP RIGHT: Retail options abound in Seattle’s Ballard neighborhood; BELOW: Guests enjoy a tasting at Pomum Cellars; BOTTOM LEFT: Holiday spirit fills Leavenworth, Washington; BOTTOM RIGHT: An artisan works on a hand-blown creation at Glassybaby
Glassybaby is a household name in the votives market. Substantial and often colorful, these handblown creations can be seen in the Seattle hot shop where they will teach you the art of glassblowing. Chukar Cherries are the cream of the crop. Taste them in Prosser at the charming wine country shop. Harvested in the summer, these cherries go chocolate-covered in the winter.