7 West Coast Wineries to Taste California, Oregon and Washington each offer a unique style and taste that all wine lovers should enjoy. Here are 7 wineries to check out. BY TOURING & TASTING
A few guest clink their glasses full of Beringer wine.
Photos courtesy of Touring & Tasting and the corresponding wineries.
“ Silvan Ridge Winery has the reputation for producing memorable wines at attractive price points, as well as lively events, dinners, outdoor concerts.”
There are amazing wineries around the world producing fantastic wines, from France and Italy to Chile and Spain. Along the West Coast of America is no different. Wine enthusiasts can travel up the Pacific from California to Washington tasting exquisite wines. Here are seven wineries to visit and taste.
Elizabeth Chambers Cellar
On every Elizabeth Chambers Cellar wine label, one finds a blue butterfly—a tribute to Elizabeth’s mother, who inspired her daughter’s role as a pioneer in Oregon wine. Today, Elizabeth Chambers Cellar is dedicated to the small-lot production of high-quality handcrafted Pinot Noir. Winemaker Michael Stevenson, who has been crafting wine in the Willamette Valley for more than 20 years, has forged strong relationships with many top growers. In an elegant style that avoids unnecessary manipulation in the winery or overuse of new oak, he strives for a clear expression of each wine’s unique terroir. The result is a natural wine style that consistently receives rave reviews. The spacious winery and tasting room are located in a recently renovated historic power plant. Here, guests can sit at the bar or on the patio and watch winemaking in progress while they familiarize themselves with the wines and other fans of exceptional Oregon Pinot Noir.
For more than one hundred years, the George Mettler family has farmed Harney Lane, a 100-acre parcel of land just east of Lodi. But it wasn’t until 2006 that they decided to venture into winemaking.
Everyone rolled up their sleeves. Jorja Lerner, a member of the family’s fifth generation, left her career as a physical therapist. Her husband Kyle—who jokes that farming is legalized gambling with more variables—took on added responsibilities to manage the winery, while Jorja’s mother, Kathleen, applied her strong hospitality skills to organizing the tasting room. Even Jorja and Kyle’s two children, who represent Harney Lane’s sixth generation, played a part. The family now has complete control of their wines from the vineyard to the bottle to the consumer. All the grapes are hand picked, hand sorted, and then fermented in small lots and barrel aged.
Family-owned and -operated, LangeTwins Family Winery & Vineyards is firmly anchored in the Lodi appellation as a fifth-generation producer of exceptional winegrapes. Located north of the city of Lodi amidst the family vineyards, the winery offers visitors the opportunity to have a true grape-to-glass experience in its new tasting room, The Press Room, which was designed to pull visitors into the heart of the winery.
The entry to The Press Room is tucked beneath an elevated crush pad with a stunning concrete and stainless water feature marking the entrance. From here, guests have a view of the working winery, allowing those who visit during harvest months to watch the excitement of crush while sipping on new releases.
The family’s passion for sustainable winegrowing is also evident with the large portfolio of estate, reserve, and single barrel wines available to taste and purchase. In addition, LangeTwins Family Winery & Vineyards crafts a Winery Exclusive Tier to highlight unique small lot vineyards from both the Lodi and Clarksburg appellations. These distinctive wines are only available for purchase in The Press Room or online direct from the winery.
1525 E Jahant Rd.
Acampo, CA 95220
The beauty of Beringer Vineyards is evident in the wines and fully realized when visiting its historic grounds in the Napa Valley. Beringer is the region’s oldest continuously operating winery, with a winemaking tradition dating back more than 140 years. It was the first winery in the valley to offer public tours, and it remains at the top of the savvy Napa visitor’s list of places to tour and taste.
Beringer is the only winery to win Wine Spectator’s Wine of the Year for both a red and a white wine. Beringer wines are consistently highly scored, with the 2012 Private Reserve recently garnering 96 points from Robert Parker of The Wine Advocate, who in praising it noted, “The sensational 2012 boasts an opaque purple color along with abundant aromas of charcoal, burning embers, crème de cassis, chocolate, blackberries, and licorice...long, complex, compelling, full-bodied texture along with terrific purity and a savory, rich mouth feel result in a classic, quintessential Napa Cabernet Sauvignon.” Winemaker Mark Beringer, great-great-grandson of the founder, upholds his family’s singular heritage and continues the exemplary Beringer winemaking legacy of crafting wines that highlight the best of the Napa Valley terroir.
2000 Main St.
St Helena, CA 94574
Silvan Ridge Winery
Bordered on one side by Alpine forest and on the other by commanding views of grapevines and rolling hills, Silvan Ridge Winery is a slice of Alsace, just 12 miles south of Eugene.
Its patio and expansive manicured grounds are a perfect spot for a picnic, complete with fresh fruit from one of the farm stands passed along the way—a magical drive that winds through the iconic Coyote Creek Covered Bridge, pastures, and miles of vineyards.
Silvan Ridge Winery has the reputation for producing memorable wines at attractive price points, as well as lively events, dinners, outdoor concerts—and on Friday nights, revelers can enjoy their wine with pizzas from a wood-fired oven.
The winery produces approximately 20,000 cases annually including Pinot Noir, Pinot Gris, early Muscat (which has graced the dining table at the White House), Viognier, Syrah, Cabernet Sauvignon, Tempranillo, and Malbec. The wines are crafted in an exceptional New World style that demonstrates Old World sensibility and distinctive Willamette Valley terroir.
27012 Briggs Hill Rd.
Eugene, OR 97405
Buttonwood Farm Winery & Vineyard
Long before grapevines were planted on the hilltop at Buttonwood Farm Winery & Vineyard, it was home to horses, goats, and chickens; trees bearing fruit, nuts, and olives; and gardens filled with vegetables, herbs, and flowers. And long before the words “sustainable” and “organic” were part of the common vernacular, they were ardently practiced here.
The farm has been operating since the 1800s. Buttonwood Farm—named after the buttonwood, a sycamore tree native to the area—was purchased by Betty Williams in 1968. From the beginning, she was dedicated to maintaining and nurturing the beautiful 106-acre parcel of land.
Winemaker Karen Steinwachs believes she benefits from this commitment to the earth as she works with the estate’s distinctive winegrapes. Buttonwood wines are exquisite on their own, but they only taste better when paired with food. One of the year’s most anticipated events is Buttonwood’s All Farm Dinner that takes place each August. Everything on the table is sourced from its land, including farm-raised produce and meats, herbs, and fruits, all paired with Buttonwood wines. Even the flowers on the tables are grown on the property.
Since its founding in 2001, family-owned Maryhill Winery has won more than 2,500 awards including Wine Press Northwest’s 2015 Pacific Northwest Winery of the Year, the San Francisco International Wine Competition’s 2014 Winery of the Year, the Indy International Wine Competition’s 2013 Winemaker of the Year, and Seattle Magazine’s Best Destination Winery.
Maryhill Winery is the answer to an entrepreneurial dream shared by owners Craig and Vicki Leuthold who saw great potential for a winery in the Columbia River Gorge National Scenic Area, perched on the northern side of the Columbia River, in the southern tip of the Columbia Valley. Through the years, Maryhill has built a stunning portfolio of more than 50 wines of exceptional quality and surprisingly affordable price points. Under the direction of Winemaker Richard Batchelor, who has fostered relationships with some of Washington State’s most highly regarded growers in eight separate AVAs, the portfolio features many rare and unusual varietals, as well as award-winning classics, including a standout Single Vineyard Series collection for wine club members.
Today, Maryhill Winery is one of Washington’s largest and most visited wineries. Each year, the beautiful 3,000-square-foot tasting room, 1,200-square-foot Reserve Room, and gift shop greet more than 70,000 wine enthusiasts from around the world.