Windwalker Offers A Laundry List of Awards and Wines A tremendous amount of recognition has been blowing toward Windwalker Vineyard and Winery in recent years, with lots to sample. BY TOURING & TASTING
Photos courtesy of Windwalker Vineyard and Winery
The awards continue to pile up for Windwalker Vineyard and Winery.
“ Windwalker wines have won high honors at all of the major California state and county competitions.”
When Jim and Alanna Taff became the owners of Windwalker Vineyard and Winery in 2007, it was the culmination of a longtime love affair. For more than a dozen years, the couple had frequented the winery as loyal volunteer workers. In fact, they were even married on the tasting-room deck. As award-winning home winemakers, Jim and Alanna recognized the premium quality of the grapes coming from Windwalker Vineyards, one of the oldest vineyards in El Dorado County. As owners, they could craft wines to demonstrate its full potential.
Four years later, their Shady Lady Primitivo won Best of Show Red at the 2011 California State Fair and Windwalker won the Golden Bear Award and was ranked as the third winery in the state in overall winnings. Since then, Windwalker wines have won high honors at all of the major California state and county competitions, including the Orange County Wine Competition, where the winery has received four Four Star Gold Awards, which is a record number of wins for any winery. Although the Taffs enjoy being part of the winemaking process, they happily rely on the talents of their winemaker, Ben Parrett.
The Windwalker portfolio—as long as it is impressive—includes Sauvignon Blanc, Viognier, Mourvčdre, Sangiovese, Alicante Bouche, Barbera, Tempranillo, Primitivo, Zinfandel, Cabernet Franc, Cabernet Sauvignon, Merlot, Malbec, Petit Verdot, Syrah, Petite Sirah, plus several red blends and ports. In total, there are 29 wines from 24 grape varieties.
Needless to say, guests to the Windwalker Vineyard and Winery tasting room are in for many treats. Besides sampling several of the wines, they can relax in the lovely spacious tasting room or on the shaded deck where Jim and Alanna were married. Many guests bring along a picnic lunch to enjoy with a wine they select during their tasting. More often than not, Jim or Alanna are there or nearby, happy to share stories and their love affair with Windwalker wines.
What to Buy '12 Grand Chardonnay - $20
Toasted almonds, baked bread, caramel, melon, green apple
'12 Barbera - $24
Rose petals, caramel apple, honey, raspberries, sweet red cherries
'11 Zinfandel - $25
Black and blue fruit, plums, chocolate, cherry, spices
Picnic grounds, pet friendly, wine club events, owners and winemaker on site.