Thursday, November 17, 2011

Wineries & Tasting Rooms -- Desmodus Vena Winery -- Woodinville, WA

Woodinville Wines -- Desmodus Vena 
    If you haven’t heard, wine is a big deal in Woodinville.  Maybe there are some natural spirits floating down the Sammamish River that have drawn more than 100 wineries and tasting rooms to set up shop in Woodinville, Washington.  At any rate, all these wineries share the same passion for crafting superb wine. 
    In our first wine article we will be covering a small family grown winery founded by two friends, Michael and Pasha, the Desmodus Vena Winery  We've known Michael for many years after taking classes at the University of Washington together.  He and Pasha have been making wine since 2004, and boy, do they work hard to bring you the best possible product. They run a small "home-grown" operation in the cellar of Micheal's family's house.  You can reserve a bottle of their finest here.
Grape Crushing
    Michael and Pasha invited us to join them for their annual fall grape crushing event and lend a hand in the first steps of wine the making process.  For anyone who hasn't done any grape crushing before, we aren't talking the take your shoes off and start stomping kind of grape crushing--there are much more efficient and cleaner ways of going about the it these days (thankfully)...
Sorting good grapes from bad ones so the best can be crushed for wine

    All of the grapes that are used in their wines come from Riverbend Vineyard in the Wahluke Slope along the Columbia River in Washington State.  After the grapes arrived we hand sorted them to remove dead grapes and leafy debris from grape bunches, leaving only the juiciest ones.
    Once grapes were sorted we delivered them by the bucketful to the stem removal and crushing machine where the grapes became a juicy mash.  This is where the wine crafters took over.
The grape crushing event happened over Halloween weekend, so Micheal is running the grape crushing machine while styling part of his vampire costume

How to Make Wine
    Next, the newly created grape mash was added to one of several fermentation tubs where it was mixed with fermentation additives and kept at specific temperatures throughout the fermentation process.
Big tubs of crushed grapes getting mixed before being allowed to ferment 

    After the initial fermentation process the wine is then syphoned out into smaller 5-gallon carboy containers where the next fermentation process can be closely monitored. 
Grape juice being fermenting in the cellar (Photo courtesy of Desmodus Vena)

    When the time comes, Michael and Pasha employ all their trade secrets and let the wine age to perfection so they can bottle their finished product.
Michael and Pasha bringing you another year's worth of amazing wine (Photo courtesy of Desmodus Vena)

We'll Be Back
    We had an incredible time participating in the future of Desmodus Vena. We ate great food, enjoyed wonderful company, and tasted their 2008 Cabernet Sauvignon--which was fabulous. We are excited to come back next year to crush more grapes, and you can too.  This is a low-key and fun event. One of the guests remarked while we were there, "There aren't many things like this these days that bring people together over a harvest-time tradition. I like that wine is still one of those things."
Desmodus Vena truly knows how to make wonderful wine (Photo courtesy of Desmodus Vena)

Things To Know
  • To learn more about Desmodus Vena or subscribe to their wine club email:
  • Once part of their wine club you will get all the updates on exciting events like their grape crushing event
  • Desmodus Vena is a small home-grown company that strives for excellence. 
To reserve a bottle visit:

There's nothing quite like GOOD wine!
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1 comment:

  1. I had your 2011 Cabernet Sauvignon at a Thanksgiving dinner at Michael & Kerstin Barrs place in Bellingham. I was impressed. Very nice Cab.