Wilridge Vineyard, Winery & Distillery
From the beginning, Wilridge has focused on hand-crafted wines from select vineyard sites throughout Washington State.
Wilridge Winery is a small family winery run in the European tradition. Founded in 1988, Wilridge is the oldest operating winery in Seattle. From the beginning, Wilridge has focused on hand-crafted wines from select vineyard sites throughout Washington State. In 2007, Wilridge planted its certified Organic and Biodynamic Estate Vineyard on Naches Heights near Yakima. In 2017 Wilridge launched its artisan brandy distillery using grapes, apples and pears from Wilridge Vineyard. Wilridge spirits are available at the vineyard tasting room and farmers markets. Wilridge wines are available at the winery in the historic Madrona neighborhood of Seattle, at The Tasting Room Seattle in Pike Place Market, in Woodinville at Sky River Meadery, at The Tasting Room Yakima at Wilridge Vineyard and at farmers markets throughout the state.
Originally, Wilridge wines were made in the cellar of Madrona Bistro -- the first winery/restaurant in Washington State since Prohibition. The wines were aged in French oak barrels that still line the walls of the cellar. With the closure of the Bistro in 1995, the winery was expanded. The building was lifted and a 1,500 square foot cellar was excavated. New equipment was purchased from Italy, where there is a long tradition of small, family-scale wine making. The first vintage from the new facility was produced in 1996. In 2012 Wilridge built a second winery at the vineyard near Yakima in a re-purposed old wooden apple warehouse.
Since the beginning, Wilridge's goal has been to find the best vineyard sites in Washington State and hand make wines that bring out the unique characteristics of each vineyard's "terroir." Every year, Wilridge wines highlight their vineyard source and the vintage. With the planting of its own vineyard in 2007, and release of the first estate wines in 2010, Wilridge is now able to fully express the character of its own unique vineyard "terroir" while also continuing to produce wines from other great wine growing regions of Washington State. Wilridge winemaker Paul Beveridge (yes that's his real name!) has made wines from vineyards in almost every American Viticultural Area in Washington State including Yakima Valley, Walla Walla Valley, Columbia Valley, Red Mountain, Snipes Mountain, Rattlesnake Hills, Ancient Lakes, Lake Chelan, Columbia Gorge, Wahluke Slope, Horse Heaven Hills and of course Naches Heights. Paul currently makes over twenty different wines for Wilridge including Cabernet Sauvignon, Merlot, Cabernet Franc, Malbec, Petite Verdot, Nebbiolo, Barbera, Sangiovese, Sagrantino, Syrah, Grenache, Touriga Nacional, Zweigelt, Semillon, Sauvignon Blanc, Chardonnay, Viognier, Roussanne, Muscat Blanc, Pinot Gris, and Riesling. Dry, sweet, red, white or rose', Paul makes something for everyone to enjoy.
In 2017, after a fifteen year battle with the Washington State Liquor Control Board, Wilridge established Wilridge Distillery at the winery on Naches Heights. The distillery concentrates of fruit brandies -- "eaux de vie" or "waters of life" -- and grappa. All the brandies are produced from certified Organic and Biodynamic grapes, apples and pears from Wilridge Vineyard and other nearby orchards. All the grappas (called "marc" in French) are made from the pressings of red and white grapes from Wilridge Vineyard. Using the pressings allows Wilridge to produce a delightful beverage (pun intended!) from a waste product that would otherwise be composted.
Wilridge is also the "Greenest Winery™" in Washington and is proud to be the first certified Organic and Biodynamic vineyard and winery in Washington State.