We’ve all heard of Napa, Sonoma, Tuscany, and Bordeaux, but there’s a sleeper wine region that will soon be known as one of the top wine regions in the world, Walla Walla Washington. In fact, Walla Walla was just voted the number one wine region in the United States by USA Today in 2020. Nestled in southeast Washington, the Walla Walla valley straddles both Washington and Oregon. Named Walla Walla meaning “a place of many waters’ (and let’s be honest – many wines), it’s a place so nice they named it twice!
Located ~4.5 hours from Seattle, Portland, and Boise, it’s not the easiest to get to and therein lies its beauty. It has a small-town feel, it’s unpretentious, and absolutely worth making the trip to. While there is a small airport in town, most people will either have to take a connecting flight or drive to Walla Walla. The region is known for its top-notch Cabernets and Syrahs without the high price tags that you’ll find in other notable wine regions.
Walla Walla Wineries to Visit
- Alton: Alton is owned by a fabulous husband and wife duo that left their lives in Seattle to create our absolute favorite winery in all of Walla Walla. We unequivocally loved every single wine we were served, but especially gravitated towards their malbec and syrah.
- Revelry: Revelry was the first vineyard we visited during our time in Walla Walla and it completely set the standard. We absolutely loved the rosé, Syrah’s, and merlot. We highly recommend the private tasting at only $20/person.
- Castillo de Feliciana: Cross over the border into Oregon and head straight to Castillo de Feliciana. While this Spanish themed winery has typical tastings, skip them and head straight to the bubbly Sangria. I know, I know….Sangria in wine country? TRUST US! This bubbly red sangria was a game changer for us and one of the favorite drinks we’ve ever had in our entire lives.
- Amavi: Amavi is located on the southside of Walla Walla and it is just next-door to Revelry, Alton, and Valdemar. If you’re a Syrah fan, head to Amavi and select their special Syrah throughout the years tasting.
- Tranche: Located on the eastside of Walla Walla, Tranche is a sprawling estate and farm that has acres of rolling hills of vineyards, sheep that graze the fields, and donkeys that frolic around the vineyard. The tasting room is absolutely beautiful, and we loved their white wines as well as their Cabernet Sauvignon.
- Valdemar: While admittedly, Valdemar did not have our favorite wines, they did have wonderful food. We would recommend stopping at Valdemar for lunch during a tour of the southern Walla Walla wineries.
Rosé upon arrival at Revelry
The best sangria ever!
Places to Taste in Town:
- Henry Earl Estate Wines: The downtown Walla Walla tasting room has delicious wines and we highly recommend trying the Homesteader which is a combination of Merlot, Cabernet Sauvignon & Malbec.
- Bledsoe Family Winery: Bledsoe Family Winery has a tasting room in town as well as a vineyard outside of town. We couldn’t secure a reservation at the vineyard, so we stopped by the tasting room and it was absolutely delightful. We highly recommend a full tasting.
- Plumb Cellars: While this wasn’t one of our favorite stops for tastings in town, it was unique. Plumb Cellars is known for their slushy wine. If you want to change up a tasting and try something new, order a Plumb Cellar slushy wine.
Restaurants to Visit in Walla Walla:
- Brasserie Four: If there is one restaurant you should visit during your time in Walla Walla, it must be Brasserie Four. This French restaurant has some of the best food we’ve ever had, a delightful outdoor dining area, and an extensive wine list (because, after all – we are in Walla Walla). We recommend the pâté, escargot, croque madame, and calamari.
- TMACS: TMACS was one of our favorite meals in Walla Walla. The atmosphere and music are trendy without being pretentious and the food is absolutely phenomenal. We highly recommend the pappardelle and the salmon.
Pâté and bubbles at Brasserie Four
- Andrae’s Kitchen: Chef Andrae Bopp used to work at three-Michelin starred restaurant, Le Bernardin, in NYC and now, he has opened up a delicious Mexican restaurant in a gas station. Yes you read that right, it’s in a gas station. Right next to Cenex pumps and generic gas station food, there are delectable made to order tacos and Mexican food. We highly recommend visiting on Tuesday for Taco Tuesday for their Al Pastor tacos.
- Hattaway’s on Alder: Hattaway’s as known as southeast food meets Pacific Northwestern food. If you want to indulge in fried chicken and grits, duck pate, and pan seared halibut cheeks on stone ground grits.
- Bright’s Candies: After all of these delicious meals, you’ll want to treat yourself to delicious desserts. Stop into Bright’s Candies for homemade candies, ice cream, and other chocolatey treats.
Walla Walla Hotels:
- Marcus Whitman Hotel: The Marcus Whitman Hotel has been a staple in Walla Walla since 1927. It’s located smack-dab in the middle of Walla Walla, walking distance to all of the tasting rooms you could ever want. While it’s the most luxurious hotel in town, it’s still a 3-star hotel that needs some updating if they want to compete with up and coming hotels in the area.
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