Long hours of sunlight, warm days, and cool nights.
Winery Tasting Room
Walla Walla Valley
Bridging both Washington and Oregon, the Walla Walla Valley AVA ranges from 400 to 2000 feet in elevation, and receives between seven and 22 inches of rainfall depending on the area of the valley. This area is a regional agricultural hub that abounds with crisp apples, juicy strawberries, tender asparagus, sumptuous sweet onions, and nearly 3,000 acres of prime vineyards.
Encompassing nearly 11 million acres, Columbia Valley bridges the states of Washington and Oregon, and was established as an American Viticulture Area in 1981. Variety typicity and pure fruit aromas and flavors are the hallmarks of wine from the Columbia Valley. The relationship to the Missoula Floods, a series of cataclysmic events, defines the soil types of the vineyards in Washington. Most vineyards lie below the floodwaters with soils of loess—wind blown deposits of sand and silt—overlying gravel and slackwater sediment with basalt forming the bedrock. This provides a diversity of soil types that are well drained and ideal for viticulture. The Columbia Valley lies in the rain shadow of the Cascade Mountain range. The region has an arid and semi-arid, continental climate, receiving an average of 6–8 inches (15–20 cm) of precipitation annually. Irrigation is therefore required to grow vinifera grapes. This irrigation, along with consistently warm, dry temperatures during the growing season, provides growers with a large amount of control over grape development compared to many other regions of the world. This leads to minimal vintage variation and high-quality wines.
The Yakima Valley is one of Washington’s cooler growing regions. For this reason, white grape plantings outnumber red grape plantings. Yakima Valley Chardonnays display a variety of aromas and flavors depending on the relative warmth of the vineyard site. Cooler sites are notable for fresh green apple and warmer sites for stone fruit and tropical fruit. While a cooler region compared to its peers, the Yakima Valley also includes the Red Mountain appellation, which is consistently one of Washington’s warmest growing regions. There is, therefore, considerable diversity across sites. The Yakima Valley wholly contains the sub-appellations Rattlesnake Hills, Red Mountain, and Snipes Mountain.