Weekend wine happenings in Clark County for March 12 and beyond
Fri, Mar 13—Niche-a wine & art bar is pouring Portuguese wines from 5-9 pm featuring Quinta dos Roques.
Sat, Mar 14—Evergreen Wine Cellar will ‘play’ host to the Grand Opening of the Piano Preservation & Consignment shop located next door. There will be food, wine tastings for purchase and live piano music performed by Mac Potts (who can play a piano forward and backwards) and Rick Patton.
Sun, Mar 15—Rusty Grape Vineyards This is your chance to make your own pizza in Rusty’s wood-fired oven with chef Chris. $35 includes appetizers, a glass of wine, the wood-fired pizza and dessert.
Fri, Mar 13-Sun Mar 15 at Total Wine & More – When you’re hot your hot and Spain and Portugal wines are sizzling. Complimentary wine tastings will focus on the amazing wines of these two European countries that I actually visited in 2014. Tasting hours: Fri, 4-8 pm, Sat noon-6 pm, Sun noon-5 pm.
Thu, Mar 12-Sun, Mar 15 Savor Cannon Beach Wine & Culinary Festival —Looking for an excuse to head to the beach? This event is as good as any with wine-tasting opportunities all four days included in the $149 festival price or pick and choose but don’t miss the Saturday Wine Walk showcasing over 40 Northwest wines.
Fri, Mar 13-Sun, Mar 15 SIP McMinnville— Held at the Evergreen Space Museum with Cycle & Sip scheduled for Sunday. Promises to be a great time of culinary delicacies and over 70 superiorly-crafted wineries represented as well as local distilleries and Sake One.
- Volcano Views and Brews – Tues, Mar 17–The Mount St Helens Institute presents a different topic hosted on the third Tuesday of every month at Loowit Brewing Company in Vancouver and the third Thursday of every month by Hop-N-Grape in Longview unless otherwise noted on Facebook. Folks are encouraged to come around 5 pm for dinner, drinks and mingling. Presentation begins at 6:30 pm. It’s a unique way to get your drink on and learn something in the process. Oct-May (excluding Dec).
- Portland Spring Beer and Wine Fest – Fri, Apr 3-Sat, Apr 4 marks the 21st Annual. Adding local distilleries and chocolatiers bumps this up a notch. The fact that it benefits the Alzheimer’s Association makes it a gold star event. Head to the Oregon Convention Center for plenty of great beer, wine, live music, local celebrity chefs and food & beverage seminars.
- Astoria Crab, Seafood & Wine Festival – Fri, Apr 24-Sun, Apr 26 One of the best in Oregon according to industry folks I’ve talked with, this marks the 33rd annual. Seafood, a plethora of wineries (and some beer), artisans and an upbeat party vibe all weekend long.
- Chehalis Valley Wine Tour – Sat, May 2 For $20 per person receive a passport to taste at Agate Creek Cellars, Bateaux Cellars, Birchfield Winery, Heymann Winery, Scatter Creek Winery and Wells Winery. One souvenir glass and light appetizers at each winery included.
Brewed – The crew concentrates on local, quality wine offerings from the Columbia and Willamette Valleys, know what they carry and do it all in a terrific neighborhood spot with cozy seating options . Also available are mimosas, Bloody Mary’s and an occasional, seasonally-inspired adult beverage. Locati Cellars, Charles Smith, AniChe Cellars and the ever-sassy Naked Winery round out their selection.
Burnt Bridge Cellars– Winemaker, David recently featured here. Poured three new releases last weekend that might still be available. Enjoy award-winning wine at Vancouver’s only urban winery. David and Mark source their grapes from Eastern Washington and are particular about their wine competitions. 2014 and 2015 brought high praise from the San Francisco Chronicle Wine Competition. Normal tasting room hours Sat, Sun noon-5 pm.
Cellar 55 Tasting Room – Fri, Mar 13—Local art. live music from 6:30-8:30 pm and food-for-purchase from 5-8 pm. Pouring their fantastic Eastern Washington and Walla Walla wines by the glass or bottle along with light appetizers for purchase. Local art and special happy hours are featured throughout the week. Open at noon Wed-Sun.
Charlie’s Bodega – Check out the rebranded Charlie’s Bodega Tapas & Whiskey Bar, including Monday 50% off all bottles of wine $50 and under and a Thursday night flight tasting—3 whiskeys or 3-4 wines depending on bartender’s pick paired with a tapas (similar to an appetizer) or media-ración (small version of an entrée). The entire menu aims to educate folks on Spanish cuisine and their wine selection is heavily Spanish and Portuguese with a few NW favorites mixed in. Whiskey lovers will enjoy the 32 local, regional and international choices with the promise of more to come. Open Mon-Sat.
East Fork Cellars – Closed for the winter season but look for them to be open for First Friday events until they officially re-open on March 21 for the Vancouver Farmers Market season. Housed in the historic Old Slocum House. Gallery 360 —inside East Fork Cellars—is open Wed-Sun noon-5 p.m.
Evergreen Wine Cellar – Owner, Pam Robertson, was recently featured here. Sat, Mar 14—Evergreen will ‘play’ host to the Grand Opening of the Piano Preservation & Consignment shop located next door. There will be food, wine tastings for purchase and live piano music performed by Mac Potts and Rick Patton. Thurs, Apr 9—Save the date for a special tasting of Rombauer wines. The lineup of this Napa Valley vineyard is heavily awarded and highly praised by Robert Parker and Wine Spectator. Pam has the largest selection of sparklings in Clark County (80 at last count), holds extensive knowledge on food pairings to help more occasions be elevated to special ones and offers special pricing for fundraisers and special events.
The Grant House –Fabulous live music every Tues and Wed with happy hour Tue-Sat from 3-6 pm. Cozy up in this circa 1849 space (enjoy an expansive patio in warmer weather) with an extensive wines-by-the-bottle list and stay for dinner in “Vancouver’s oldest dining room” located on Officer’s Row.
La Bottega– Wednesday night wine tasting from 5-8 pm. $12 includes four tastings and antipasti. Terrific casual Italian dining with a wine list to complement every flavor profile. Happy hour Mon-Sat features $5 red/white wine option. Tuesday night wines under $50 are 50% off and wines over $50 are discounted $25. Excellent way to enjoy some premium wines with their locally-focused menu. Regular priced bottles available for take away.
Latte da Coffeehouse & Wine Bar – Thurs, Mar 26 from 5-7 pm is the next wine tasting in this intimate and inviting wine bar. Latte Da’s wine bar is open ’til 10 pm Thur-Sat featuring a wine-friendly appetizer menu to pair with their unique vino selection. Bonus: All wines are available to purchase by the bottle for take away.
Niche-a wine & art bar– Fri, Mar 13—Come enjoy a tasting of Portuguese wines from 5-9 pm featuring Quinta dos Roques. Mon, Mar 23—Make reservations for a four-course vegetarian dinner including wine pairings and dessert for $65 per person. Reservations required. Sat, Mar 28—Argentine wine and food will be emphasized as owner, Leah, speaks about her recent Argentine travels. This downtown wine bar has 30+ pours available six days a week with a staff who knows their vino. All set in an unpretentious atmosphere displaying local art. An inventory of over 160 bottles also available to take away. Live entertainment every Saturday night.
Willem’s on Main – Creative lunch and dinner menu (love the speatzle). Excellent happy hour Tues-Sat from 4:30-6 pm to enjoy with their carefully-prepared wine list, 50% off bottles under $40 on Tuesdays.
Felida/Hazel Dell/Salmon Creek
Farrar’s Bistro – If you haven’t been to this great Felida neighborhood restaurant that touts ‘comfort food with a flair’ as its motto (I.e. shrimp & oyster po boy sandwich, Andouille sausage gumbo), it’s time to check it out. Happy hour 3:30-6 pm. Complement some small plates with a velvety cabernet sauvignon or herbaceous sauvignon blanc.
Fred Meyer Salmon Creek – Fri & Sat from 3-6 pm wine steward, Kent Gallegos, routinely pairs two wines with Murray’s cheeses. Don’t know quite what you’re looking for? Kent’s enthusiastic palate and gregarious personality won’t steer you wrong.
Confluence Vineyards and Winery – Sat, Mar 21-Sun, Mar 22—You won’t want to miss spring barrel tastings at Confluence from noon-6 pm. Open Sat & Sun noon-6 pm tasting the bold and beautiful Rhone and Bordeaux reds Confluence is known for. Occasional live music in their festively-decorated and heated tent. Watch for a tasting room expansion to be completed late spring/early summer.
Koi Pond Cellars – Wed, Mar 18—Bonnie Junell Sip & Paint class $40 per person includes all supplies and a glass of Geisha red or white wine. Sat, May 2—Participating in Ridgefield’s May Day celebration.Stay tuned. Begins during happy hour at 5:45 pm. Ask about their Blancitini wine cocktail. Mural and artwork by resident artist, Micah Boylan, grace the walls. Happy hour Wed & Thur from 4-7 pm. Open Wed-Sun.
Gougér Cellars – Fri, Mar 6-Sun Mar 8—Due to a strong interest, Gary’s flown in 24 pounds of Zweigles hot dogs (ones he grew up with) from Rochester, NY. He’s serving them with his house-made mustard. Sauerkraut, dill and caraway seeds are available upon request. Fri, Mar 13—Sharon’s Paint and Pour returns with the Eiffel Tower as your artistic goal of the night. Come for the painting, camaraderie, great wine and Sharon’s patient and encouraging teaching technique. Fri, Mar 20-Sun Mar 22—It’s barrel tasting weekend for many area wineries and Gougér has treats in store. Tasting room open Wed-Sun. Fri, Mar 27—Gary’s offering a fruit-carving class from 7-8:30 pm. $20 per person.
Bethany Vineyard – Fri, Mar 20-Sun Mar 22—Participating in Spring barrel tasting weekend. Due to Walt’s extensive estate vineyard planting and his vineyards in the Washington Gorge, he currently bottles the most wine of any vineyard in the County. With Bethany’s current wine list of 21 offerings, you’d be hard-pressed not to find a bottle for every palate. Tasting their consistently elegant wines Fri and Sat noon-6 pm, Sun noon-5 pm.
Three Brothers Vineyard – Fri, Mar 20-Sun Mar 22—Participating in Spring barrel tasting with appetizers and special 2013 red wine samplings. Be sure to try their two newer releases—2011 Sono La Vite and 2011 Brethren Cuvée—or pick up a bottle of his 2009 Sangiovese which won gold at the 2012 San Francisco Chronicle Wine Competition. Dan Andersen, was recently featured here. Look for an expansion of outdoor seating in 2015 and some other surprises. Tasting hours Fri 1-6 pm, Sat noon-6 pm, Sun noon-5 pm.
Hudson’s Bar and Grill – A largely Washington, Oregon and California-inspired wine list with a selection of three by-the-bottle wines rotated on a monthly basis. Inside the Heathman Lodge near Westfield Shopping Center, enjoy a glass of Washington Chardonnay with a plate of sautéed mussels or a glass of Barnard Griffin Cabernet Merlot with a meatloaf sandwich while warming up fireside (as if that’s been needed this winter) under the massive Northwest logs during ‘Hudson’s Hour’ from 4-6 pm.
Total Wine & More – Fri, Mar 13-Sun Mar 15— When you’re hot your hot and Spain and Portugal wines are sizzling. Complimentary wine tastings will focus on the amazing wines of these two European countries that I actually visited in 2014. Tasting hours: Fri, 4-8 pm, Sat noon-6 pm, Sun noon-5 pm. Thur, Mar 12—Delve deeper into the wines of Spain and Portugal from 6:30-8:30 pm. $20 includes the tasting of 8 wines. Check out their calendar for upcoming special event tastings and classes which may include a fee.
Fred Meyer Orchards – Fri, 2-5 pm & Sat, 1-5 pm wine steward, Shawn Martin, hosts a two to three-wine tasting that he pairs with Murray’s cheeses and focuses on lesser-known wines to broaden his customers’ wine catalog. Shawn’s commitment to local wines is evident in his terrific end cap featuring Bethany Vineyards, Koi Pond Cellars and Three Brothers Vineyard.
Village Vineyard – Re-opening May 2nd after their winter break. Stop by for a tasting and stay for a glass of wine in their lovingly-appointed living room. Folks are invited to bring munchies to snack on while enjoying some adult down time. Normal tasting room hours: Sat noon-6 pm, Sun 11 am-5 pm.
Pomeroy Cellars – Sat, Mar 7 was the first day of their 10% off their Log House red wine and Hard Apple Cider in honor of Taste Washington Wine Month. Come try Dan’s terrific line-up including his rhubarb or blackberry wine. Open Sat and Sun. Looking ahead Thu, May 7 begins a new series at Pomeroy—First Thursdays—which will run on the first Thur of every month through Sep 3 and replace their Thursday happy hour which has been discontinued.
Moulton Falls Winery – Sat, Mar 14—Come celebrate St Patrick’s Day a bit early with Irish-inspired music, the official introduction of Moulton’s Hard Cider and Shepherd’s Pie is on the menu. Check out the new bar and table tops while enjoying some beautiful wines (the sangiovese is my fav), great food and friendly owners waiting for you in Yacolt. Spike Walker, author of the book Working on the Edge which inspired the Discovery Channel’s Deadliest Catch, has been appearing on Saturday nights to sign his books and talk with folks. Each weekend enjoy live music by some of the area’s best musicians from 6-9 pm as well as Friday happy hour from 4-9pm ($5 on select glasses of wine) and pasta dinners available for purchase on Saturday nights in addition to their wood-fired pizza options.
Heisen House Vineyards – In honor of Washington Wine Month, Michele will be rolling out specials throughout the month. If you haven’t had a chance to taste the five new wines she introduced over Valentine’s Weekend, come enjoy the gorgeous weekend weather on the Heisen grounds. Normal hours: Sat noon-6 pm, Sun noon-5 pm.
Olequa Cellars – Recently I took advantage of a patio special (and his dog-friendly stone patio) and visited in the sunshine with Brian and his brother between tastings while enjoying his 2011 Olequa Red. Next opening day Sat, March 14 from noon-5 pm. His charming tasting room is “generally open the second and fourth Saturday of each month” with private tastings of his beautiful boutique wines welcome.
Battle Ground Produce – The owner of Battle Ground Produce, Lorne, knows his wine and enjoys offering complimentary tastings to customers most Fridays from 4-7 pm. Andreas, Rayne and Scott pour with insight, passion and friendly banter. There’s usually something for the beer lover, as well, and he recently added a handy growler station across from the meat case.
Rusty Grape Vineyards – Sun, Mar 15—This is your chance to make your own pizza in Rusty’s wood-fired oven. $35 includes appetizers, a glass of wine and dessert. They’ve added paninis and wood-fired truffle chips to their menu. Live music Wed-Sat from 7-9 pm. Come check out the tasting room remodel. Wednesday is 2 wood-fired pizzas for $15. Thursday brings Thirsty Thursday from 4:3-6:30 pm with special prices on wines, beer and food and Sunday they do it again from noon-3 pm. Something’s always going on at the Grape. Open Wed-Sun.
Emanar Cellars – Fri, Mar 13 & Sat, Mar 14—Featuring live folk music by Kelly Bosworth and Daniel Cecil. Featured local wine: English Estate Winery’s Marguerite Metis. Sit a spell and enjoy authentic tapas paired with a host of Spanish wines. Open Thursday-Saturday from 4-9 pm.
Pasta GiGi’s – Thu, Mar 12—Tonight is their first Vintner’s dinner. Five Italian wines have been selected by Chef Kathy and assistant manager, Lindsey Morris and local wine consultant, Dennis Kirshner, will bring each wine and food pairing to life with his wit and wisdom. If the evening is anything like my recent “rosemary linguine tossed in a honey brown butter sauce with tomatoes, mushrooms. artichoke hearts and topped with our house sundried tomato pesto, chèvre cheese and seared sea scallops” paired with a bottle of 2012 Cline Cashmere from Lindsey’s secret stash, it’s sure to be a hit.
C’est La Vie Crêperie – Enjoy Keri’s Friday night social hour with a special food and drink menu every Friday from 4-8 pm like her recent chicken crêpes in a creamy parmesan-thyme sauce. A lemon-drop mimosa was recently introduced. Wine-O Wednesday is marked by $1 off mimosas, spritzers and wines by the glass. Wed, June 3—Owner and Wine and Spirits Diploma-holder from the Wine and Spirits Education Trust, Keri Buhman, is instructing a Clark College continuing ed wine class from 6-8:30 pm at the Columbia Tech Center. Keri gives people an excuse to drink wine with the most important meal of the day – breakfast. Perfectly-flavored mimosas with such inspirations as black forest French toast and French onion soup Friday. Très bon. Open Tue-Sat 9 am-3 pm with additional hours from 4-8 pm on Fridays.
Vinotopia – Located inside Cascade Park’s Cinetopia, Vinotopia received Wine Spectator’s Best of Award of Excellence five years straight. Recently featured here. Aside from the dizzying array of wines by the bottle, guests can enjoy ½ off bottles of wines on Wednesdays and tastes or glasses of wine from a selection of over 100 daily. Pair that with their live music from 6-10 pm every Sat in their dining room and you have a no-fail date night.
BevMo! – Fri 4-7 pm & Sat 2-5 pm, 5 tastings, always complimentary unless otherwise indicated. Presiding over the pouring could be the very pleasant and cheerful, Anna, accompanied by manager, Kristin. Low key, comfortable atmosphere.
Whole Foods – Beer & wine specialist, Kamram, hosts beer or wine tastings Sat from 1-4 pm. Also tasting on Friday evenings from 4-8 pm but it’s typically beer-focused.
New Seasons Market –Sat, Mar 14—Pouring value-packed and complex South African wines from 2-4 pm. Fri, Mar 27—One of my favorite regions; Portugal-pouring Vinho Verde, literally green wine, from 4-6 pm. The acidity of this wine is perfect for springtime, shellfish and pungent cheeses. Sat, Mar 28—Tasting a selection of French reds from 2-4 pm.
Fred Meyer Fisher’s Landing – Every Fri & Sat from 2-5 pm long-time Clark County wine steward, Ernie Jones, aims for two tastings with occasional Murray’s cheese pairings. Enjoy their dedicated wine-tasting space.
English Estate Winery – Fri, Mar 13—Celebrating St Patty’s Day early with Irish stew. RSVP strongly encouraged. Wine specials all month long in honor of Washington Wine Month. Hosting a dinner every Friday night with local, live music that begins at 6 pm. The only winery open Monday from 4:30-7 pm with $5 glasses of wine to start your week off right. Open Fri-Mon. Save the dates: May 2—The English Family Barn Anniversary Party celebrates 100 years! July 11 & 12—8th Annual Art & Wine Fair with local artisans.
Roots Restaurant & Bar– Thu, Mar 12—Reserve your spot at the next four-course winemaker’s dinner featuring Leavenworth’s Boudreaux Cellars. $85 per person. Reservations required. Their pan-seared salmon with beluga lentils and beets would pair beautifully with a 2012 Boedecker Pinot Noir. From Cakebread to Domaine Drouhin to L’Ecole, you’d be hard-pressed to choose wrong and from 3-6 pm Mon-Fri and 9-11 pm Fri-Sat, pair your selection with locally-inspired happy hour bites.
Grapes ‘n Growlers– This newly-opened east side establishment features keg wines as well as 34 beers on tap. Check out the details here.
Birch Street Uptown Lounge – Sunday and Monday night wine flights from 4-9 pm. Last week featured Southern Rhone wines. Come out and enjoy this classic-style wine and cocktail lounge with live torch singers every Fri and Sat night beginning at 8 pm. You might even hear Santana or Diana Ross’s keyboardist. It’s been know to happen!
Flutes & Rocks Lounge – Thu, Mar 26—Come partake in a Washington wine tasting. Enjoy seven wines thoughtfully paired with light bites from 6:3-9:30 pm. Enjoy sparklings from California, high-end Champagnes by the glass, wines and beers paired with an artisan cheese plate or charcuterie platter. Stay tuned for: live music, scheduled wine tastings and a Bourbon tasting! Open Tues-Sat.
The Puffin Café floats along the port in Washougal. Their limited wine selection focuses on the Columbia Valley except for the 2009 Puffin brand Oregon Pinot Noir—with proceeds of each bottle sale going to the Haystack Rock Awareness Project to support puffins in Cannon Beach. This place is the North Bank’s answer to Margaritaville. The crew is terrific, the menu is full of culinary surprises and it is THE place to be with our recent summer-esque weather.
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