AWG Correspondent

Denise Gangnes

J. Bookwalter Photos

J. Bookwalter Review

Regions: Columbia Valley AVA, Washington

Reviewed: April 5, 2012 by Denise Gangnes
Published: May 19, 2012

Bookwalter’s award-winning Flagship tasting room in Richland is an oasis to the weary wine taster; comfy chairs and tables in a restaurant atmosphere, five separate patios and mouth-watering morsels and affordable wines create a relaxing and memorable experience in the heart of the Tri Cities.

Richland Flagship Tasting Room:  Conveniently located just off Highway 182 in Richland, the tasting room was originally the home of founder Jerry Bookwalter. Opened in 1983, the facility underwent a major remodel after 20 years - the effort earned it Sunset’s 2010 Winery Tasting Room of the Year award.

The Wines:  The Bookwalter family makes sure their wines take on the family name; varietals are titled Bookmark, Footnote, Protagonist, Subplot, and Notebook … you get the idea. You might not take this seriously until you discover they are sourced from 30-year old vineyards. The age of these vines limits yields, and small lots can sell out quickly - it took 6 months for the new vintage of their signature "Subplot" red to reappear on shelves. Wine club members are quick to save 25% and snatch up several cases at less than $20 per bottle.

The Bistro:   Richland’s location boasts their “JBistro” restaurant, with an upscale, lounge-like atmosphere, featuring padded straight back chairs and brightly colored walls inside, and comfortable dining outside. The bistro lists a delectable menu ranging from Ahi tuna to crab cakes, and several options for flatbreads. Multiple dining areas offer a variety of aesthetics and experiences – suitable for both wintertime visits and most pleasurably, in the spring, summer and fall. Eastern Washington boasts a more Midwest-like temperature pattern: hot summers and temperate springs and autumns. The latter is a perfect time to visit the winery for a less crowded experience and to bask in the uninterrupted views of the rolling hills that define the less forested half of the state. For entertainment take advantage of the new bocce ball courts or sit by the fire pit if “Caveman TV” is more your style.

Address & Contact Information: 894 Tulip Ln Richland, Washington 99352. Telephone: 509-627-5000, email:, website: Tasting Hours: Nov-Feb: Sun 12:00-6:00, Mon-Tues 12:00-8:00, Wed-Sat 12:00-10:00; Mar-Oct: Sun-Tues 11:00-8:00, Wed-Sat 11:00-11:00.

Overall Rating:  

Red Wine White Wine Service View/Ambiance

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