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Red Mountain

With a unique combination of soil, slope, consistent winds, and warm weather, Red Mountain red wine grapes such as Cabernet Sauvignon, Merlot, and Syrah have earned critical acclaim over the last two decades. The exceptional balance of fruit, acidity, and tannins in the wines grown here have put Red Mountain on the map as a severe wine-growing region and a must-visit Washington wine-tasting destination.


There are over a dozen wineries within the Red Mountain AVA, with more on the way. Red Mountain vineyards produce the most sought-after fruit in all of Washington, and wineries from across the state craft celebrated wines from our area. That means you can enjoy spectacular Red Mountain wines from east to West, from Seattle to the Yakima Valley.

The first wine pioneers in the region walked the land in the summer of 1972. They found a gently sloping sagebrush-covered hillside that both early settlers and local indigenous peoples had primarily overlooked. There were no roads, wells, power- lines, or other signs of civilization.

These wine pioneers were John Williams and Jim Holmes. Dr. Walter Clore and his staff at the WSU agricultural station in Prosser greatly influenced the wine grape research.

Three years later, in 1975, they planted the first ten acres of vineyard on Red Mountain after obtaining power, water, and rights-of-way to the property. As wine hobbyists, they imagined that planting a vineyard might be fun and profitable. While they hoped their efforts might one day produce fine wine, they had not envisioned the greatness to follow.

The first wines produced were delicious, and the reputation of Red Mountain began to grow. Vineyard expansion grew steadily, and the pioneers sold their grapes to some of the wineries now recognized as some of the best. The first Red Mountain winery was bonded in 1980. After that time, more people began to purchase land and plant vineyards, recognizing the superior quality of Red Mountain grapes and the potential for world-class wines.

AVA status was achieved in 2001. Red Mountain now hosts approximately fifty-four vineyards covering more than 2300 acres, making Red Mountain one of the most densely planted AVA, with 57% of the AVA currently planted. 

What’s so special about SE Washington wine? It’s all about the “terroir.” Many people think terroir means the type of soil that wine grapes are grown in, but the word means much more than that. It describes the natural environment in which wine grapes are grown, including soil, topography, and climate factors.

Near constant wind decreases berry size and thickens grape skins, helping provide concentration and tannic structure.

“Vines really struggle here because it gets so hot and windy during the summer,” says John’s son Scott Williams, whose family owns Kiona.


One of the leading wineries in the Red Mountain area is:


Hedges Family Estates


Hedges Family Estates was dedicated in September 1995. Bio-dynamic and organic vineyards surround the Chateau. Led by a passion for authenticity and a deep connection to the land they call home, the Hedges Family epitomizes the modern wine estate. A blend of affluent cultural upbringings and a shared love for creating beautiful wine converge at the heart of Red Mountain, fostering an authentic homegrown approach to farming and viticulture. Tending to the riches of Red Mountain with a visionary blend of bio-dynamic agriculture and time-honored wine-making techniques, Hedges Family Estate lends an ear to the earth and a voice to the vines.

The French-inspired winery and tasting room are ideal for tasting some of Red Mountain's best! Winery Hunt Club Members are also invited to a complimentary tour of the property and winery during your visit.

Wines Produced: Syrah, Red Blends, Cabernet Sauvignon, Rosé, White Blends

Per the Great Northwest Wine Magazine

Judging for the 23rd annual Platinum Awards took place October 26 -28, 2022. Here are this year’s winning wineries:


Double Platinum – 95 points

Ambassador Wines of Washington - 2019 Estate Envoy Red Wine


Double Platinum – 95 points

Kiona Vineyards and Winery – 2018 Estate Reserve Red wine


Double Platinum – 95 points

Hamilton Cellars – 2018 Estate Bona Vita red wine


Platinum – 93 points

Hamilton Cellars – 2018 Estate Cabernet Franc


Platinum – 92 points

Ambassador Wines of Washington – 2019 Estate Diplomat Red Wine


Platinum – 94 points

Hamilton Cellars – 2018 Estate Malbec

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