Silvara is a gem to be found
Blog: Winemaker's Journal
December 3, 2012
Gary Seidler went all out when he built his Silvara Vineyards tasting room on Stage Road, off Highway 2 near Peshastin.
So, it only made sense to go all out decorating the exquisite lodge for the holidays.
Seidler said he spent about $8,000 dressing up the 4,000-square-foot winery with thousands of lights, Christmas trees and festive chandeliers.
Situated on a scenic viewpoint above Smallwood's Harvest, the winery is one of North Central Washington's newest and most luxurious wine stops. With its immense rustic timbers, towering native stone fireplaces and leather furniture, the Jerry Locati-designed lodge offers a posh setting for majestic views of rolling pear orchards and the snowcapped Cascades.
Seidler's wines offer a taste of luxury as well. The slightly off-dry Riesling has been a big seller this year. Not a surprise with its intense fresh aromas of pineapple and peach. He favors the Klipsun 60/40 Merlot-Cabernet Sauvignon blend and the new 2010 Red Blend, a more classic Bordeaux style. Both are easy drinking and easily matched with a wide variety of foods.
My favorites are the two velvety Syrahs he offers, some of the best I've tasted anywhere. Either would be a great holiday gift wine if you can force yourself to part with them.
Seidler, 56, earned his winemaker certificate from UC Davis after selling his information technology company in Arizona. He interned locally with Craig Mitrakul at Saint Laurent and Ryan Patrick wineries before opening the doors at Silvara in 2009. He's been making his wine from mostly Yakima and Prosser grapes the past two years in Richland along side famed winemaker Charlie Hoppes. Seidler said he wants to make wine wherever he can learn the most. The quality of his wines show that he's already learned a lot.
His partner in the winery and in life is professional golfer Cindy Rarick. If their expansive wine tasting room has the comfy feel of a luxury home, it's because the couple live there — Cindy when she's not on the golf tour. Their apartment is on the second floor.
The winery is only a few miles east of busy Leavenworth, but Seidler said tourists have been slow to find it. He's starting to get some tour buses to stop in. Live music and patio barbecues bring in locals and travelers on summer weekends.
But like most NCW wineries, attracting a steady flow of consumers is an ongoing challenge and work in progress as the young wine region becomes better known for its many great offerings.
Stop in, sip a couple of Silvara's wines in front of the fireplace and take in the views. I think you'll agree it really is gem waiting to be found.
Check out their website: www.silvarawine.com