How many wineries?!?!?!
We thought we'd take a little longer daytrip, visit some wineries and stay overnight in Walla Walla at the historic Marcus Whitman Hotel. We started doing our research before the trip to figure out which wineries we would visit since we would only be there for one day before staying overnight and heading home the next day. We knew that the winery business had been growing in the Walla Walla area, but we were shocked when we heard there were over 120 wineries - and some people told us that the number was growing to 200+ wineries! So off we went to check out this expanding industry in Walla Walla!
World Class Wine
The Walla Walla Valley is now known as one of the finest wine regions in the country, with over 2,900 acres of grapes. The wineries are in several areas, including downtown, westside, eastside, southside, airport and reaching into Oregon. Each area has its own character, so we recommend visiting at least one winery from each area. Even with our short visit, we managed to check out wineries in several areas, just to see the differences from one area to the next. To help plan your visit, here is a link to the Walla Walla Wineries Map & Winery List on visitwallawalla.org, where you can also find information about lodging and other activities in the Walla Walla area.
Walla Walla is an active town with a lively downtown that boasts a creative vibe with a small-town Main Street feel that includes the best mix of shops, cafes, bookstores, restaurants, tasting rooms, art and outdoor music. For a town with a population of just over 34,000 you will find an amazing number of things to do! Our two-day visit was fun, but we could have spent more time checking out all that Walla Walla has to offer!
If you want to know more about the history of Walla Walla, check out this information from the City of Walla Walla.
Here are the four wineries and tasting rooms we visited in one day! If they are an example of what you will find at the other 116+ wineries, you will enjoy your Walla Walla wine country tour! The wine associates in the tasting rooms were all very friendly and knowledgeable and made sure we had a wonderful experience. Reservations are required at most of the wineries, so be sure to book ahead.
Va Piano Vineyards
Address: 1793 J B George Rd, Walla Walla, WA 99362
Contact Number: 509-529-0900
When we drove through Va Piano Vineyards, we felt like we were driving through the gently rolling hills of Italy. We visited the tasting room at the vineyard, but they also have a few tasting rooms scattered around Walla Walla, including one in the downtown area. Their wines are sourced from their own vineyards that include plantings of Cabernet Sauvignon, Cabernet Franc, Malbec and Merlot. The Tuscan-inspired tasting room at the vineyard has sweeping views of the vineyard with comfortable seating both inside and outside. We were also able to play ball with the resident greeter while we sipped our wine on an outside patio (see pictures).
L'Ecole No. 41
Address: 41 Lowden School Rd, Walla Walla, WA
Contact Number: 509-525-0940
L'Ecole No. 41 is located in an old schoolhouse about 20 minutes west of downtown Walla Walla - and definitely worth the drive! L'Ecole No. 41 is a third-generation family business and third winery established in the Walla Walla Valley. They are known for their sustainable farming techniques developed over their thirty years of winemaking, with award-winning results. Tasting is in a classroom of a 1915 Frenchtown School, which pays tribute to the region's heritage, including the planting of vineyards by French-Canadian settlers in the area.
Address: 5641 Old Hwy 12, Walla Walla, WA
Contact Number: 509-526-9463
Three Rivers has a very large interior space plus 16 acres of beautiful grounds! If you are looking for a location to host a large group, this is a great location with a beautiful view that looks over the vineyards as well as Mill Creek, Whitman Mission and the Blue Mountains. Three Rivers was named for three waterways in Eastern Oregon: the Columbia, the Snake and Walla Walla Rivers. Three Rivers' wines maximize the quality of blending grapes from several vineyards.
Address: 150 E Boeing Ave, Walla Walla, WA 99362, United States Website: https://www.dunhamcellars.com
Contact Number: +1 509-529-4685
What a delightful experience! Dunham Cellars is located by the airport in a remodeled World War II airplane hangar. This world-class winery, with over 25 years experience, sources their grapes from a variety of Walla Walla and Columbia Valley estate vineyards. Dunham Cellars specializes in a variety of wines including Cabernet Sauvignon, Merlot, Syrah, Sauvignon Blanc, Chardonnay - and more! The tasting room has a rustic atmosphere with open areas, as well as tucked-away nooks and small conversation areas. They also host a number of public events such as winemaker dinners, as well as private events such as birthday parties and anniversary dinners.
I'm Here - Now What?
Bring your appetite! Excellent restaurants in the area!
Bring your walking shoes for walking around town
Bring your camera
And you can always fit in a little Geocaching
The next day we headed home, looking back at a fun, two-day escape!
STARTING POINT: Boise
DISTANCE FROM STARTING POINT: One way was approximately 255 miles
TIME TO REACH: 4 hours
ROAD SURFACE: Paved
WHEN ACCESSIBLE: All year
FEES: Fees charged in tasting rooms
RECOMMENDED VEHICLES: Any
PET FRIENDLY: Not recommended
WHEN WE WENT: August