During our stay at Willows Lodge, right in the heart of Woodinville, we couldn’t NOT enjoy a day exploring the wonderful cellars that surround the lodging. We were lucky enough to meet with the lovely Anne for lunch and a few wines on an almost-sunny Monday. Anne, also known on Instagram as @hiptravelmama is a fellow travel blogger who we arranged to catch-up with to talk all things travel, adventures, blogging, and wine in Woodinville of course! Anne took us to a couple of her favourite wineries in the area, which are now our favourites too, so we thought we would put together a seperate little blog post about our top picks when travelling through this gorgeous wine country.
The commute from Seattle to Woodinville was a beautiful one, one minute you are driving through the hustle and bustle of city traffic, and the next you are travelling through tree-lined streets and nothing but gorgeous greenery in every which direction. Within 30 minutes, you are in Woodinville, with over 100 wineries, cellars and tasting rooms to choose from, the options for good food and wine are absolutely endless.
Anne brought us to two completely different wineries, and we’re about to tell you why we loved them both!
Novelty Hill | Januik - with a spacious modern design and decor, this winery boasted a large tasting room, and outdoor garden and patio area, giving visitors lots of choice in where they would like to enjoy their time here. Known for their award-wining wines, not only do Novelty Hill | Januik have a large selection of wines for tasting, but they also specialise in pizza’s and delicious food customised for your wine tasting experience.
We were introduced to the lovely Michelle who gave us a full tour of the winery - the tasting room, the cellar, distillery, the function and meeting rooms, and outdoor area - before organising us a table outside where we would have our lunch.
We had the great opportunity to meet and greet with chef Seth, who prepared for us a tasty meal, filling our bellies with an assortment of different types of cuisine paired with our wines, even finishing us off with a delicious dessert (see more photos below!) - thanks Seth! We spent some further time chatting with winemaker Mike, and couldn’t have been any more warmly welcomed by all.
JM Cellars - Our second stop was JM Cellars, a quaint family-owned winery nestled in the most gorgeous green garden setting. We met with owner and wine-maker John Bigelow and his lovely wife Peggy, and we learnt about the lovely history of how their hard work has turned JM Cellars into the success that it now is! We sipped on a variety of different red-wines while being given a tour of the tasting room area, cellar, and our favourite part - the outside grounds. With a little trail that takes you all the way down to the riverside, JM Cellars is in a gorgeous location where you can really escape and relax and enjoy the sounds of the chirping birds and running water. Also specialising in weddings and private functions, JM Cellars has been renovated to provide a wonderful space for bridal parties to enjoy on their special day (see photos below!)
As big lovers of red wine, we have visited many different wine regions all around the world in our time, however Woodinville wine country was truly like no other. So close to the big city of Seattle, yet you feel as though you are in a completely different world, a wonderland of gorgeous landscapes and wineries holding so much history and passion. The wineries all share great comradery, and don’t see one another as competitors, but instead friends and fellow community members who all share a love for great food and wine!
After a day of exploring this characteristic region, we ventured back to Willows Lodge, which is right in the heart of all the love. Willows Lodge also offer complimentary bike rental to guests, which enables you to explore the surrounding region at your leisure, with no concern for needing to drive! To read more about our time at Willows Lodge, click here to our seperate blog post about our wonderful stay!
Whether you are wanting to spend a weekend away with your loved one, celebrate your birthday, or simply just because you want to escape the crazy city life, if you are passing through the area of Seattle you MUST make sure you make a stop in at the Woodinville wine country, and especially to Novelty Hill | Januik, and JM Cellars - for more information about the region, check out the website at www.woodinvillewinecountry.com