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McCrea Cellars Rainier, WA 98576 www.mccreacellars.com
11515 Eagleview Lane
Rainier, WA 98576
(206) 938-8643
Fax : 206 932-6562
Email: mccreawine@aol.com
Tasting room hours: --- (Map)
The McCrea winery in Rainier is open for special events and by appointment only. McCrea wines can be tasted at the Olympia Wine Tasting Bar and at Urban Enoteca in Seattle.
We've pioneered Rhone varietals in Washington for over two decades. In partnership with several dedicated growers, we began with a vision, believing that these grape vines would succeed in an unproven region. Today ten varietals thrive, an unprecedented achievement in our State.

The wines from these plantings have exceptional quality and accurately reflect the distinctive flavors of their Rhone Valley predecessors. Our story is not about a winery alone, but about relationships with inspired growers who believe in our passion and were willing to take risk.

Our first Rhone wine came from an old Grenache planting in the Columbia River Gorge. In 1990 we planted Syrah next to the Grenache, ultimately producing the State's first Rhone-style blend, naming it "Tierra del Sol." From this site we released our first Syrah from the 1994 vintage in December of 1996, receiving exceptional recognition and reviews. This was the second Syrah ever produced in Washington State.

In 1994, Jim Holmes, owner of Ciel du Cheval, planted both Syrah and Viognier. Also that year, we planted Syrah with Dick Boushey at what we now call the "Grande Cote", with first production in 1997 of the Ciel and Boushey Syrahs as well as the Viognier. When released, the reception of these wines by the trade and media was extremely supportive and scores were very good. Also, the Viognier was a first in the State.

In 2000, Jim planted Mourvedre, Counoise, Roussanne and two additional clones of Syrah. From these vines we released the State's first Counoise and created a new Southern Rhone-style blend named "Sirocco", comprised of Grenache, Mourvedre, Syrah and Counoise. In 2003 he added Grenache. Then in 2004, Dick planted Marsanne, Grenache Blanc, Picpoul and Cinsault at a site very near the "Grande Cote." Most of the cuttings for this vineyard were obtained from Tablas Creek Vineyards whose parent company is Chateau Beaucastle in Chateauneuf-du-Pape. The Ciel du Cheval Mourvedre, Counoise and Roussanne are also Beaucastle stock.

A modest beginning with Grenache in 1989 has grown to over two dozen acres of ten Rhone varietals. Since the original plantings, we've now established a fourth wonderful source with Joe Hattrup who owns Elephant Mountain and Sugarloaf Vineyards, located at the western end of the Yakima Valley. From there we source Syrah, Grenache and Mourvedre and small amounts of Counoise and Cinsault.

Championing these grapes has required perseverance and careful site selection to assure their survival in Eastern Washington's cold winters. The State's volcanic, glacial soils, combined with the arid, desert climate provide an ideal setting for complex, fruit-driven wines. We're very proud to be at the forefront of this remarkable adventure.

McCrea Cellars is owned and operated by two couples. Doug and Kim McCrea have their home at the winery site with their two sons, Kevin and Kalen. Sales and Marketing Manager Susan Neel lives in West Seattle with her husband Bob who serves as our operations manager and chief engineer.
. Alternate Tasting Rooms:
  • Olympia Wine Tasting Bar
    ........116 5th Avenue SE
    ........Olympia, WA 98951 ........ Open Today 1:00 PM-6:00 PM ... Info & Map

  • ........
    ........, ........ Open ... Info & Map ... Info & Map-2
    .
  • Winemaker Doug McCrea
    I've been asked, "Why do you make Rhone varietal wines?" Something about the flavors of this family of grapes simply resonates in me beyond any other varietals. I'm drawn to their warm and rich personality, as well as to the indigenous grapes of Spain that are the origin of several Rhone varietals.

    Our family often enjoyed wine with dinner in my birthplace, New Orleans, and I find they particularly complement a wide array of foods with their easy-going nature and Mediterranean flair. I am drawn to a wine that connects to my primal nature. Rhone wines are like liquid soul food, they're rustic, inviting and hedonistic."

    Outside of winemaking, Doug McCrea is an accomplished classical and jazz musician having specialized in woodwinds. Upon leaving New Orleans, he attended college in the San Francisco Bay Area where he developed a career as an educator and professional musician. During that time he made many journeys to the wine country of Napa and Sonoma at a time when the California wine industry was just beginning to flourish.

    Doug moved to Washington State in 1980 and began to experiment with small lots of wine. He realized the State had excellent potential for producing exceptionally high quality wines after becoming familiar with some of the products of the founders of today's industry. While working at two early Woodinville wineries, Doug learned the technology of winemaking and developed "hands-on" experience. In 1988, he founded McCrea Cellars and the rest is Rhone wine history.

    "My winemaking philosophy is simple. Wine is fundamentally created in the vineyard. A winemaker senses the grapes' subtle flavors, nurturing and expanding these elements. Then, like musical improvisation, my personal expression results from many decisions throughout the development of the wine, beginning at crush and culminating in the final blends. Both music and winemaking possess a common bond, the opportunity to release creativity."

    As the late Jacques Perrin of Chateau Beaucastle once said "Do not search in a wine for the reflection of an exact science! The formulas of scientific enology are only a thin competition which does not know how to respect the mysteries of eternal creation." This is the great enigma of artistry, whether heard in a work of Mozart or captured in a crystal wineglass.

    --
    Red ------------- ---
    2008 Grenache
  • Appellation: Yakima Valley
  • Winemaker: Doug McCrea
  • We produced several vintages of Grenache in the early nineties, and a blend with Syrah called “Tierra del Sol.” The vines used for those early bottlings were unfortunately lost in the big freeze of 1996. We have now replanted at several sites that are more winter-resistant, allowing us to return Grenache to our lineup. Our primary use of these grapes is in our southern-Rhône blend (“Sirocco”). But we enjoy the strawberry and spice of Grenache so much that we bottle some variet... ...read more
  • Learn More
  • 349 cases produced
  • Question? Comment? mccreawine@aol.com
  • Visit: www.mccreacellars.com
  • $28.00
    Regular
    as of 05/15
    Email

    Tastings by Appointment
    "The McCrea winery in Rainier is open for special events and by appointment only. McCrea wines can be tasted at the Olympia Wine Tasting Bar and at Urban Enoteca in Seattle.["
    Red ------------- ---
    2009 Mourvedre
  • Appellation: Yakima Valley
  • Winemaker: Doug McCrea
  • Mourvdre is gaining great respect and desirability in Washington State. The Mourvdre comes from Beaucastel stock via Tablas Creek nurseries, planted at Ciel du Cheval on Red Mountain. In the beginning our purpose in planting Mourvdre was for our southern-Rhne style blend (Sirocco), but we couldnt resist producing a small quantity as a single varietal. It has proved to be a very popular decision! It is our single most popular bottling, particularly on restaurant wine lists.
  • Learn More
  • 296 cases produced
  • Question? Comment? mccreawine@aol.com
  • Visit: www.mccreacellars.com
  • $28.00
    Regular
    as of 02/17
    Email

    Tastings by Appointment
    "The McCrea winery in Rainier is open for special events and by appointment only. McCrea wines can be tasted at the Olympia Wine Tasting Bar and at Urban Enoteca in Seattle.["
    Red ------------- ---
    2008 Amerique Syrah
  • Appellation: Yakima Valley
  • Winemaker: Doug McCrea
  • The vintage of 2008 will be remembered for its unusually cool summer and fall temperatures, but ultimately, for very classy wines. An exceptionally long, cool and rainy spring delayed bud break for at least two weeks. Once into July, a very cool summer presaged a late year, with slower and somewhat delayed veraison. As harvest approached, ripeness and overall flavor development lagged. Sugars barely reached 24 Brix uncommonly low. Picking was late and somewhat compressed in time; finding spac... ...read more
  • Acclaim: 92 pts Wine Enthusiast "Blended with Mourvedre, this Syrah offers an enticing nose of raspberry, huckleberry and wild currant with scents of incense, lavender and violets. 19/20 pts." Rand Sealey, Review of Wa. Wines
  • Learn More
  • 189 cases produced
  • Question? Comment? mccreawine@aol.com
  • Visit: www.mccreacellars.com
  • $34.00
    Regular
    as of 01/12
    Email

    Tastings by Appointment
    "The McCrea winery in Rainier is open for special events and by appointment only. McCrea wines can be tasted at the Olympia Wine Tasting Bar and at Urban Enoteca in Seattle.["
    Red ------------- ---
    2008 Boushey Vineyard Syrah
  • Appellation: Yakima Valley
  • Winemaker: Doug McCrea
  • Aromas of earthiness, leather, cedar, and mushrooms with high-tones of violets, cassis and blueberry, followed by dense flavors of cherry, plum, licorice, smoked meats, pencil lead, toasted nuts and truffle. Finishes with great acidity an assurance of its excellent cellaring potential. We expect this wine to drink well for ten to twenty years.
  • Learn More
  • Question? Comment? mccreawine@aol.com
  • Visit: www.mccreacellars.com
  • $36.00
    Regular
    as of 01/12
    Email

    Tastings by Appointment
    "The McCrea winery in Rainier is open for special events and by appointment only. McCrea wines can be tasted at the Olympia Wine Tasting Bar and at Urban Enoteca in Seattle.["
    Red ------------- ---
    2008 Cuvee Orleans
  • Appellation: Yakima Valley
  • Syrah
  • Winemaker: Doug McCrea
  • Of our five different Syrahs, Cuve Orleans is focused on elegance, complexity and finesse. The addition of some Viognier to the Syrah fermenters, in the tradition of wines from Cte Rtie, produces four distinct and often dramatic outcomes: during co-fermentation the white grape enzymes extract even more color (somewhat counterintuitive); the Viognier adds floral aromatics; the acidity is increased, which adds finish on the palate and longevity in the cellar; and most significantly the white wi... ...read more
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  • 163 cases produced
  • Question? Comment? mccreawine@aol.com
  • Visit: www.mccreacellars.com
  • $40.00
    Regular
    as of 01/12
    Email

    Tastings by Appointment
    "The McCrea winery in Rainier is open for special events and by appointment only. McCrea wines can be tasted at the Olympia Wine Tasting Bar and at Urban Enoteca in Seattle.["
    Red ------------- ---
    2009 Syrah
  • Appellation: Yakima Valley
  • Winemaker: Doug McCrea
  • Our 2009 Yakima Valley Syrah is a blend of grapes from three outstanding Yakima Valley vineyards. After de-stemming and gentle crushing (just enough to pop the berries) it was fermented in small batches of 3⁄4 to 1-3⁄4 tons each. We use open top fermenters with a manual punch down of the cap twice or three times per day during active fermentation. When dry the wine was dejuiced, rather than pressed, and transferred to barrel. It was aged thirty-two months in 2- to 6-year old ... ...read more
  • Learn More
  • Question? Comment? mccreawine@aol.com
  • Visit: www.mccreacellars.com
  • $25.00
    Regular
    as of 02/17
    Email

    Tastings by Appointment
    "The McCrea winery in Rainier is open for special events and by appointment only. McCrea wines can be tasted at the Olympia Wine Tasting Bar and at Urban Enoteca in Seattle.["
    Red ------------- ---
    2006 Sirocco
  • Appellation: Yakima Valley
  • Blend of Syrah, Mourvedre,
  • Winemaker: Doug McCrea
  • -
  • Question? Comment? mccreawine@aol.com
  • Visit: www.mccreacellars.com
  • $28.00
    Regular
    as of 06/05
    Email

    Tastings by Appointment
    "The McCrea winery in Rainier is open for special events and by appointment only. McCrea wines can be tasted at the Olympia Wine Tasting Bar and at Urban Enoteca in Seattle.["
    White ---
    2010 Grenache Blanc
  • Appellation: Yakima Valley
  • Winemaker: Doug McCrea
  • With only a few acres in production in the Northwest, this is truly a very exclusive wine. The vines are sourced from the famous Beaucastel vineyard in the Rhne, via Tablas Creek. This vintage is leaner, crisper and brighter than in the past, with green apples and pineapple predominating. The addition of some Marsanne helps balance the acidity and brings nice layers of fruit and minerals to the finished wine. It will complement foods where high acidity is desired, such as oysters on the half sh... ...read more
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  • 186 cases produced
  • Question? Comment? mccreawine@aol.com
  • Visit: www.mccreacellars.com
  • $25.00
    Regular
    as of 01/12
    Email

    Tastings by Appointment
    "The McCrea winery in Rainier is open for special events and by appointment only. McCrea wines can be tasted at the Olympia Wine Tasting Bar and at Urban Enoteca in Seattle.["
    White ---
    2010 Marsanne
  • Appellation: Yakima Valley
  • Winemaker: Doug McCrea
  • This is our second varietal bottling of Marsanne, and so far as we know one of only two in the Northwest. The vineyard was planted in 2004 with Beaucastle cuttings sourced from Tablas Creek. The primary purpose was to go into Sirocco Blanc, our Cte du Rhne-style white blend. The wine was fermented in neutral oak barrels to give it texture, but no oak flavor. Known for its golden straw color, melon overtones, full-bodied structure and heavy minerality, Marsanne is often blended, typically with ... ...read more
  • Learn More
  • 120 cases produced
  • Question? Comment? mccreawine@aol.com
  • Visit: www.mccreacellars.com
  • $25.00
    Regular
    as of 01/12
    Email

    Tastings by Appointment
    "The McCrea winery in Rainier is open for special events and by appointment only. McCrea wines can be tasted at the Olympia Wine Tasting Bar and at Urban Enoteca in Seattle.["
    White ---
    2009 Picpoul
  • Appellation: Yakima Valley
  • Winemaker: Doug McCrea
  • Only the fourth Picpoul vintage in Washington, this year we were able to spare four barrels (all neutral oak) for this unique varietal bottling. With a mere 3⁄4ths acre in production in the Northwest, this is truly a McCrea exclusive. Our vines are Beaucastel heritage, via Tablas Creek. Picpoul is one of the lesser-known Rhne varietals, and in its native France exhibits lean and green traits. The New World versions are fresh and crisp, but more aromatic, rounded and spicy. Picpoul rou... ...read more
  • Learn More
  • 72 cases produced
  • Question? Comment? mccreawine@aol.com
  • Visit: www.mccreacellars.com
  • $25.00
    Regular
    as of 01/12
    Email

    Tastings by Appointment
    "The McCrea winery in Rainier is open for special events and by appointment only. McCrea wines can be tasted at the Olympia Wine Tasting Bar and at Urban Enoteca in Seattle.["
    White ---
    2010 Viognier
  • Appellation: Yakima Valley
  • Winemaker: Doug McCrea
  • In 1997 McCrea introduced Viognier to the Northwest. Based on the dozens of wineries that have followed suit, it has proven to be very well suited to Washington. This year we revisit the complexity that Roussanne brings to whats now a Washington classic. The Viognier was fermented in stainless steel and finished in barrel, the Roussanne completely in neutral barrels.
    The 2010 vintage was easily the coolest in the history of McCrea Cellars wines. A typical bud break was followed by an unusual...
    ...read more
  • Learn More
  • 183 cases produced
  • Question? Comment? mccreawine@aol.com
  • Visit: www.mccreacellars.com
  • $25.00
    Regular
    as of 01/12
    Email

    Tastings by Appointment
    "The McCrea winery in Rainier is open for special events and by appointment only. McCrea wines can be tasted at the Olympia Wine Tasting Bar and at Urban Enoteca in Seattle.["
    White ---
    2010 Sirocco Blanc
  • Appellation: Yakima Valley
  • Grenache Blanc Blend
  • Blend of Grenache Blanc, Marsanne, Roussanne, Picpoul
  • Winemaker: Doug McCrea
  • Dick Boushey, one of Washingtons finest growers, planted these grapes for us in a new vineyard on lower County Line road in Grandview in 2004. So far as we know, the Grenache Blanc and Picpoul were the only bearing blocks in the State, making this a totally unique offering from Washington. This is the fifth vintage.
    A classic case of the whole is greater than the sum of the parts these four wines, all fermented in neutral French oak barrels, are interesting and distinctive by themselves ...
    ...read more
  • Learn More
  • Question? Comment? mccreawine@aol.com
  • Visit: www.mccreacellars.com
  • $25.00
    Regular
    as of 01/12
    Email

    Tastings by Appointment
    "The McCrea winery in Rainier is open for special events and by appointment only. McCrea wines can be tasted at the Olympia Wine Tasting Bar and at Urban Enoteca in Seattle.["
    Rosé ------ ---
    2011 Rose of Cabernet Franc
  • Appellation: Red Mountain
  • Rosé of Cabernet Franc
  • Winemaker: Doug McCrea
  • Yes, we know, Cabernet Franc is not a Rhne grape variety. But this was something we just couldnt pass up. The fruit is from a relatively new vineyard on Red Mountain, managed by renowned grower Dick Boushey. This ros is made from dedicated fruit and was allowed 48 hours of skin contact before pressing off. Fermented in stainless, it was transferred to neutral oak barrels after it completed. As a result of the contact with skins & seeds, the wine developed beautiful, deep cranberry color a... ...read more
  • Learn More
  • Question? Comment? mccreawine@aol.com
  • Visit: www.mccreacellars.com
  • $20.00
    Regular
    as of 02/17
    Email

    Tastings by Appointment
    "The McCrea winery in Rainier is open for special events and by appointment only. McCrea wines can be tasted at the Olympia Wine Tasting Bar and at Urban Enoteca in Seattle.["
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