Woodinville is just 30 minutes northeast of Seattle and home to some of the best wineries, tasting rooms and farm-to-table experiences in the state. It’s the perfect place to bring your girlfriends for a day of wandering, wine tasting, indulging and good ol’ fashion soul food.
I partnered with my friends at Main Street Drivers, a ‘Designated Driver’ service that essentially provides a chauffeur…but here’s the unique part – they’ll be driving your car. The idea is that they’re offering a service that typically would cost a fortune, but at a reasonable rate, since they can avoid the high cost of a fleet line or limousine. They’ve proven tremendous success in various wine regions in New York and Walla Walla, and brand new to the Seattle and Woodinville area.
To test out the service, I gathered my girlfriends to visit 5 of my favorite places in Woodinville! Main Street Drivers allows a safe and responsible option for wine tasting – especially if you live outside of an Uber region, plus there’s comfort in riding in your own car.
Here’s how the day played out – the driver arrived at my house at 9:30am and we picked each guest up along the way. I built an itinerary for the day which included 2 wine tastings, lunch, followed by 2 more tastings (I was told this was the best wine tasting ‘schedule’ by a friend/wine expert). So without further ado, I’ll go ahead and share where we went and I promise by the end you will be craving a tall glass of vino, ready to book a visit with your girlfriends, too!
First stop was Basel Cellars, a tasting room featuring the brilliant variety from the Basel Cellars Estate Winery in Walla Walla. My favorites included the 2901 Rosé 2014 along with Merriment, which is Basel Cellar’s flagship, high-end blend. The tasting room has plenty of room for groups, along with a patio during the spring/summer months. I highly recommend including them in your next visit to Woodinville – the manager, Kevin, is gracious, inviting and even took our group photo!
Patterson Cellars – Hollywood Hill
Our next stop was Patterson Cellars on Hollywood Hill (they also have a tasting room in the Warehouse District). The flights include 5 to 6 wines for $10, however, waived with a $25 minimum wine purchase. Patterson Cellars is known for creating ‘approachable wines that reflect the new world style in winemaking.’ I love a sweet, dessert wine and the 2015 Late Harvest Roussanne with notes of pineapple, honey and cinnamon was so good. Patterson Cellars has one of my favorite covered patios, with plenty of space to sit down, have a glass (or 2) of wine and enjoy your company without feeling the need to rush. I’d also like to note, even though they were really busy – we still had excellent customer service (thank you, Katie)! Definitely add them to your visit to Woodinville!
The Hollywood Tavern
After two tastings, we were ravenous so fortunately I had The Hollywood Tavern on the itinerary – where you arrive hungry and leave in pure belly bliss. It is a renowned gathering place for over 70 years for delicious food, craft cocktails and a unique experience both inside and out.
We started off lunch with fried pickles and a buffalo dipping sauce…
A glass of wine…
Sautéed brussels sprouts with thai chili, garlic, bacon and roasted peanuts…
Hand-cut house fries with a Tavern dipping sauce…
A taste of each other’s cocktails (this is the Moscow Mule)…
And then more food…I had the Indian Summer Salad with quinoa, kale, cranberries, roasted onion and hazelnuts…you guy’s – this salad is killer. Order it!
My sister-in-law had their Green Goddess Salad which included leaf lettuce, chicken, sun-dried cherries, Rogue Blue, toasted hazelnut, bacon and green goddess dressing.
My girlfriend had the Cubano Sandwich with pulled pork, ham, carmelized onions, pepperoncini and aioli.
After seeing these photos, it’s obvious we took their ‘inspired comfort food’ real serious. We practically had everything on the menu and thoroughly enjoyed every single bite. If you’re hungry, thirsty or just looking for a really cool place to hang out – definitely visit The Hollywood Tavern – it will always be one of my very favorites.
And look at this outside seating area?! Pretty ideal summer spot, right?
Bunnell Family Cellar
Located in the Woodinville Wine Warehouse District, Bunnell Family Cellar is a great place to pull up a barstool, enjoy their featured wines and chat. The tasting room includes wines from the Bunnell Family, Newhouse Family Vineyards, and Upland Estates. For the tasting I loved that we were presented with all of the wines, labeled and set up accordingly. It was great to see the variety of differences in color and depth. A beautiful space with well-versed staff, Bunnell Family Cellar is a great place to visit in Woodinville!
Lauren Ashton Cellars
The last stop on our Woodinville wine tour, Lauren Ashton Cellars, pulled out all the stops. They provided a private group tasting experience for our group, which happened to be the same day as their Rosé launch, so the tasting studio was buzzing with festivities! An absolutely gorgeous studio, located in The Hollywood District at the Apple Farm Village, Lauren Ashton Cellars offers fascinating varietals including Chardonnay, Roussanne, Syrah, Riesling, and Semillon as well as both Bordeaux and Rhone style blends.
For our tasting experience we had the opportunity of being guided by Bill Collins, the tasting studio manager, whose love for wine is easily translated in his brilliant, engaged demeanor. His knowledge combined with a true passion for the fundamentals of understanding and enjoying wine sets him apart from other hosts. You visit Lauren Ashton Cellars for the tasting, but you leave with a feeling, an acknowledgment of the process, the people and the vines that fill your glass.
Lauren Ashton Cellars is a must for your visit to Woodinville – and don’t leave without a bottle of Rosé!
I hope you enjoyed reading this as much I did writing it. Woodinville is one of my favorite destinations in the Pacific Northwest for spectualuar wine, exquisite food, and always good company. I urge you to make a date with your girlfriends, contact Main Street Drivers (you can find all of their locations here) to arrange a driver and visit these 5 places in Woodinville!
*Photo Editing by Jasmine Klein Photography
Disclosure: Main Street Drivers, Basel Cellars, Patterson Cellars, The Hollywood Tavern, Bunnell Family Cellar & Lauren Ashton Cellars graciously hosted our group. The opinions expressed here represent my own, which I take great pride in providing pure honesty…because I’m OBSESSED with sharing the Good!