Chateau Ste. Michelle
|Chateau Ste. Michelle|
|Location||Woodinville, Washington, USA|
|Appellation||Columbia Valley AVA|
|Formerly||American Wine Company|
|Key people||Bob Bertheau, Winemaker|
|Parent company||Ste. Michelle Wine Estates (Altria)|
|Known for||Eroica Riesling|
|Varietals||Cabernet Sauvignon, Malbec, Merlot, Syrah, Chardonnay, Chenin blanc, Pinot gris, Riesling, Sauvignon blanc, Gewurztraminer|
|Tasting||Open to the public|
Chateau Ste. Michelle is Washington state's oldest and most acclaimed winery located on picturesque grounds near Seattle. The winery is known for award-winning Chardonnay, Cabernet and Merlot and is recognized globally as a leader in Riesling. The winery has winemaking partnerships with two of the world’s most distinguished vintners: Col Solare is an alliance with Tuscany’s Piero Antinori and Eroica Riesling is a partnership with the Mosel’s Ernst Loosen. Chateau Ste. Michelle was selected as "Wine Enthusiast" magazine's 2004 American Winery of the Year.
Chateau Ste. Michelle is the oldest winery in Washington state. It was founded as the American Wine Company, a 1954 merger of the National Wine Company (NAWICO), founded in 1934, and the Pomerelle Wine Company. (For years, there was a large neon sign advertising NAWICO in Seattle's Wallingford neighborhood.) The French-style chateau is located on 87 acres (35 ha) of land with mature trees that once belonged to lumber baron Frederick Stimson, who used it as a hunting retreat and rural working farm called the Hollywood Farm. Chateau Ste. Michelle and its parent company Stimson Lane were owned by US Tobacco until purchased by Altria in 2009.
Over the years, many Washington winemakers have gotten their start working for Chateau Ste. Michelle, these include Kay Simon of Chinook Wines which she co-founded with her husband Clay Mackey who also worked at a vineyard manager for Chateau Ste. Michelle.
With annual productions of over 2,000,000 cases a year, Chateau Ste. Michelle is the world leading producer of Riesling wine. The winery owns several estate vineyards in Eastern Washington including the Canoe Ridge vineyard in the Horse Heaven Hills AVA, the Cold Creek vineyard and Indian Wells vineyards in the Columbia Valley AVA.
On the grounds of the winery is an amphitheater where outdoor concerts are performed in the summer. Past entertainers have included Pink Martini, Amy Grant, Tori Amos, Counting Crows, Tony Bennett, Gypsy Kings, Anita Baker, Harry Connick, Jr., Crosby, Stills & Nash, The Steve Miller Band, the Dave Matthews Band, Amos Lee, Sarah McLachlan, Styx, B.B. King, Yes, OneRepublic, Sara Bareilles, Serena Ryder, Gladys Knight and the Pips, Vince Gill and Diana Krall.
- History and information at vintners.net
- Farm Workers in Washington State History Project, including photographs, oral histories, digitized newspaper articles and documents from the union organizing drive and ensuing international boycott of Chateau St. Michelle during the late 1980s and early 1990s.