We have learned to look for wineries in some less than romantic locations as we have traveled; we discovered Nodland Cellars in an end unit of commercial storage-style buildings. A couple of years before, on a lovely summer day, we visited Twelve String Brewery in the building facing Nodland Cellars. Both businesses have accomplished musicians as owners and makers of their respective beverages, so lets say good company and lots of talent.
Tim Nodland, owner and winemaker, began his wine odyssey as a home winemaker in 1999. Having access to Bordeaux varietals from the Walla Walla Valley he received the bond to Nodland Cellars, opening this facility in 2005. With Red Mountain red grapes and Columbia Valley Riesling to accompany the Walla Walla fruit, Nodland Cellars typically offers six wines along with t-shirts and trinkets with Nodland Cellars on them and visual art (paintings, prints, photos, etc.) from different artists each month.
Being a Jazz fan I was immediately drawn to the framed painting on the opposite wall from the front door. As the tasting bar was in front of it, like an altar, it was a simple decision to stay at the bar to taste and look at the painting up close. Tasting room manager, Diana, was wearing a shirt with another, similar image and the tag line ‘Bad Attitude’. That image invokes Rock-n-Roll instead of Jazz; similar images of musicians & their instruments, similar red backgrounds but the energy of each image conveys the different styles of music exceptionally well. These are both paintings of Tim Rogerson, a Disney World artist and accomplished fine arts painter; more exceptional talent.
- 2012 Bebop – is an off dry Riesling,12.8% ABV, 1.7% RS, with a floral, marzipan and citrus nose, granny smith and lemon zest finish.
- 2010 Bad Attitude (to be officially released on May 1st) – from Seven Hills Vineyard is a Merlot based red blend with 14.7% ABV is cherry and blackberry on the nose, chocolate and baking spices on the palate, all the way through the finish; this in Nodland Cellars signature wine.
- 2011 Avant-garde – is 100% Carmenere’, 15% ABV, white pepper and dark fruit on the nose, black cherry and earthy notes on the palate finish with savory spice and white pepper notes.
- 2008 Private Blend – 55% Cabernet Sauvignon, 18% Malbec, small amounts each of Carmenere, Cabernet Franc and Petit Verdot – is smoky on both the nose and palate with pie cherries and vanilla with 14.5% ABV.
- 2010 Reserve Cabernet Sauvignon – 50% Seven Hills Vineyard, 50% Pepperbridge Vineyard making it a decidedly 100% Walla Walla AVA, from potentially older vines with tobacco, smoke and Cassis on the nose, plum and blackberry with a hint of pine on the palate with 15% ABV.
As a 400 case winery club members and visitors to their tasting room seem to be snapping up the wines so they aren’t going to be distributed any time soon. I understand Nodland Cellars is considering a move into the Spokane Downtown. Maybe he and the Twelve String owner will have a couple of jam sessions before this move happens.