Sipping Suggestions: Prosser, WA
I learned of Prosser and the Vintner's Village while thumbing through a Washington wine magazine. It's a concentrated area, where you can establish a home-base at a cute Airbnb and explore the town on foot.
If you do not have the opportunity to stay for a few days, the Vintner's Village is a great place to take a break from the long drive down HWY 82. It's right off the freeway and you can easily find great bites and wine.
Keep in mind if you are planning a weekend trip to Prosser, a lot of restaurants are closed on Sunday. Otherwise, the wine will be flowing no matter the day of the week.
I was thoroughly impressed with Prosser's Covid regulation compliance. Everyone was respectful and operated in a healthy manner. All of the tasting rooms and wineries we visited had plenty of indoor and outdoor space, to safely meet the needs of their patrons.
Walk-in tastings seemed to be easily accommodated at many of the wineries. If there is a winery you want to visit, it is always best to secure an appointment ahead of time.
Atmosphere: There are two locations for Alexandria Nicole Cellars in the Prosser area, one in town off of Lee Rd and one about 40 minutes out of town. We made the drive to their Destiny Ridge location, to experience the breath taking views of the Horse Heaven Hills AVA and the Columbia River. It is the perfect space to sip wine and immerse yourself in WA wine country.
Service: Our lovely hostess, Katie took us on a wine safari as she pointed out notable landmarks from our table while we sipped on their delicious wine. She made the vastness of their estate relaxing and inviting. All while tenured, Winery Dog Teegan made it feel like home.
Wine: I fell in love with Alexandria Nicole wines several years ago, when I first tried their Syrah blended with a hint of Viognier. It was so memorable, that the complex black fruits and the deep color of the wine lured me back to try more. I am happy to say their wines maintained their first impression; they are bold and dynamic - just as I remembered.
Atmosphere: The warmth of this tasting room and its beautiful outdoor space, transport you to a relaxing villa far from the cold winds that sweep across Prosser. They share space within a co-op building, that allows winemakers to use shared equipment to make their wines. This business model provides small wineries the opportunity to become established producers like this one. Their success is demonstrated in their growth from a two barrel operation, to the main tasting room.
Service: This winery was the most recommended in town. From tasting room employees to restaurant owners, this winery was at the top of everyone's list and for good reasons. Part owners Monica and Andrew (winemaker) made us feel so comfortable - we felt like old friends reuniting. Monica made us delicious food pairings to enjoy with the wines and you know how I feel about a good pairing...I was in heaven.
Wine: Andrew makes wine with intuition leading the way. Allowing the taste of the wine to drive his winemaking practices. The technique is clearly working, because his wines are phenomenal. The Viognier is crisp, aromatic, refreshing, and oh so delicious. The same can be said about the Roussanne. I haven't even gotten to his red wines or their propriety rosé wine slushy! No matter what type of wine drinker you are: red, white or beer. You will be sure to find something you will love to sip on here.
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Atmosphere: Mercer is a powerhouse in the Washington Wine industry and they have done a phenomenal job at making their awe inspiring tasting room feel inviting and relaxing. It was the perfect destination to kick off our weekend in Prosser, we relaxed outside on their patio and took in the sun with our pups as we sipped wine.
Service: The staff were delightful, friendly and knowledgeable. Aside from great service, we were given the much needed scoop on Prosser. The staff and this tasting room reinvigorated my excitement to learn more about wine and Mercer's impact on the wine industry. I experienced the cleanest barrel room I have ever seen and the massive production facilities were astonishing
Wine: On top of the amazing space, they have a lovely selection of wines. I must admit, it was love at first sip with the sparkling Subsoil Chardonnay. It was refreshing and paired perfectly with the end of a long drive and a warm sunny patio. If for some reason you do not know Mercer Wines, get to know them. They are worth every sip.
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Cheers and Happy Sipping!