Cougar Crest Estate Winery – Walla Walla, WA

Cougar Crest Estate Winery is a must see (and taste) place on the west side of Walla Walla, WA.  A lot of time and thought went into the design and construction of this facility, with its high skylit ceilings, large and comfortable lounge area, killer art and spacious tasting bar.

I spoke with winemaker Debbie Hansen about their award winning wines (the 2002 Syrah was named #33 in the top 100 wines in the world) and about the philanthropic work they do through their Dedication series of wines.

Skylite Cellars

Skylite Cellars is a great little place and today we are featuring not one but two videos of them. The first was done in the winery, which is a very cool building, modeled after a wine barrel. We taste some of their award-winning wine and chat with Asst. Winemaker Greg Matiko and owner Cheryl Hodgins. They have a great upstairs lounge area adorned with commissioned art works by Michael Stockdale, depicting humorous scenes from around the winery. He is a French painter who has also created their famous Hiney Wine labels.

The second video features Cheryl and Courtney at their downtown Walla Walla location, Skylite Cellars at the Gallery. They have transformed a corner of the Skylite Gallery into a lovely tasting bar, that gently descends into their aptly named “Barrel Room.” A wonderful place to relax and enjoy great art as well as great wine.

Artistic Portraits ~ Kennewick, WA

I had a very relaxing morning chatting with Rob DiPiazza of Artistic Portraits. He has a gorgeous studio and portrait park and a great approach to setting himself apart as a professional portrait artist. It seems every soccer mom with a digital camera and a business card has taken to calling themselves professional photographers, and it just ain’t so. One look at Rob’s studio and the portraits gracing his walls will dispel that instantly.

We also spent some time sitting by the pond sipping a very nice ’00 Reserve Cabernet from Columbia Crest.