Washington produces great wines, no question. The problem, for travelers, is trying to taste those bottles at the source. Tour some vineyards in Walla Walla? Red Mountain? The Wahluke Slope? You might as well drive to Moscow—Moscow, Idaho, that is.
 Luckily, there’s an easier way: hitting the tasting rooms that have popped up in and around Seattle. Woodinville, 
a 30-minute drive away, saw the start of its tasting-room boom a few years back, with dozens of places opening in the center 
of town and many more in the warehouse district. In the past year or two, young producers have also started making 
top-quality reds and whites right in Seattle, importing grapes 
from eastern Washington to the grungy-cool, industrial SoDo and Georgetown neighborhoods. “You can feel the creativity creeping into this area,” says Ryan Crane, the owner and winemaker of Kerloo Cellars in SoDo. Tasting rooms there 
sit side by side with art galleries, brake-and-clutch supply places, hole-in-the-wall Mexican joints and even, believe it or not, topless drive-through coffee huts. 
 So skip the three-hour trek over the Cascades, book 
a room at the beautiful new Thompson Seattle hotel overlooking Pike Place Market and follow this weekend itinerary for an incredible wine-soaked weekend. Ray Isle

Food & Wine

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