Horse Heaven Hills AVA

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Horse Heaven Hills AVA
Wine region
Horse Heaven Hills AVA map.JPG
TypeAmerican Viticultural Area
Year established2005[1]
Years of wine industrysince 1972
CountryUnited States
Part ofColumbia Valley AVA, Washington
Climate regionContinental/maritime
Soil conditionsquick-draining silty loam
Total area570,000 acres (230,671 ha)[2]
Size of planted vineyards6,040 acres (2,444 ha)[2]
No. of vineyards20
Grapes producedBarbera, Cabernet Franc, Cabernet Sauvignon, Chenin blanc, Grenache, Malbec, Marsanne, Merlot, Mourvedre, Petit Verdot, Riesling, Roussanne, Sauvignon blanc, Syrah, Viognier, Zinfandel[2]
Wine producedVarietal, Dessert wine, Meritage, Sparkling wine

The Horse Heaven Hills AVA is an American Viticultural Area in southeastern Washington, and is part of the larger Columbia Valley AVA. The Horse Heaven Hills AVA borders the Yakima Valley AVA on the north and the Columbia River on the south. Elevations in this AVA range from 200 feet (61 m) above sea level in the south to 1,800 feet (549 m) above sea level at the northern boundary. Grapes planted in the south-facing slopes of the Horse Heaven Hills benefit from strong winds that arrive from the west via the Columbia Gorge, reducing the likelihood of rot and fungal diseases.[2]


Cabernet Sauvignon from the Horse Heaven Hills AVA.

Horse Heaven Hills AVA is home to the single largest wine making facility in Washington, the Columbia Crest Winery owned by Chateau Ste. Michelle in Paterson. Alexandria Nicole Cellars has a large vineyard at Destiny Ridge.


Some of Washington's cult wines are produced from Cabernet Sauvignon grapes grown in this AVA including the 2002 and 2003 Quilceda Creek Vintners Cabernet Sauvignon, which scored the rare 100 point rating from Robert Parker's The Wine Advocate.[3] Only 15 other wines in the US have received this designation, all made from California grapes.[4] Only five other previous vintages have received consecutive perfect scores in The Wine Advocate's publishing history.[5] The Quilceda Creek wines were blends with grapes from three Red Mountain AVA vineyards and one Horse Heaven Hills AVA vineyard.[6]

See also[edit]


  1. ^ "§ 9.188 Horse Heaven Hills" (Title 27: Alcohol, Tobacco and Firearms; Part 9 — American Viticultural Areas; Subpart C — Approved American Viticultural Areas). Code of Federal Regulations. Retrieved January 30, 2008.
  2. ^ a b c d "Horse Heaven Hills (AVA): Appellation Profile". Appellation America. 2007. Archived from the original on August 6, 2013. Retrieved January 30, 2008.
  3. ^ Parker, Tom (September 1, 2002). Discovering Washington Wines: An Introduction to One of the Most Exciting Premium Wine Regions. Raconteurs Press. p. 85. ISBN 0-9719258-5-2.
  4. ^ Allison, Melissa (May 5, 2006). "Cup of cheer overflows for Snohomish vintners". Seattle Times.
  5. ^ "Snohomish winery makes state history". Seattle Times. May 3, 2006. Archived from the original on May 24, 2011.
  6. ^ "2002 Offerings". Quilceda Creek Vintners. Archived from the original on September 30, 2007.

Coordinates: 45°57′26″N 119°36′34″W / 45.9571°N 119.6095°W / 45.9571; -119.6095