If you want to experience Napa of 20 years ago (or so I understand, I wasn’t old enough to drink) go Eastern Washington. Make sure to stay a day or two and explore beyond Walla Walla.
Get there: Fly. ~35 minute flight to either Pasco (frequent) or Walla Walla (a few times a day) via Alaska Air. Car rentals sell out at Walla Walla so reserve in advance or you will need to go to Pasco.
Home base for Red Mountain/Prosser
Desert Wind Winery: Has four charming rooms. We stayed in the Lewis and Clark room (two queens – rest are Kings). No restaurant so after a long day of wine tasting – have a picnic waiting in your room. Wonderful linens and details. Fire place and balcony. Pure charm (aside from highway right outside and no restaurant on site, but the room does come with breakfast). Be warned, make sure to know when you want to leave in the morning and arrange it the night before with the tasting room staff.
Marcus Whitman is the main hotel. I haven’t stayed anywhere else. There have to be better choices, let us know in the comments.
- Hedges: Must go. Beautiful spot. Great wines. Get a tour of the cellar. Left as a wine club member. Wines $20+
- Col Solare: Beautiful setting overlooking all of Red Mountain AVA and great higher end wines. The tasting was 3 2 oz pours. Wines $40+
- Airfield Estates: Airplane themed, of course I am a sucker. Not on a vineyard, but in a hanger and a fantastic $5 tasting (8 wines). Great mix, left as a wine club member. Wines $15+
Let us know your favorite wineries in the comments below!