Located on the scenic ship canal, the Almquist tasting room is in the old Book Bindery restaurant space. It features a glass atrium with seating, a bar and large covered outdoor seating area. The winery can easily be missed when driving by. Look for the streetside stacked wine barrels with the name painted on it, on the East side of Nickerson.
GOOD FOR: Wine and food lovers, private gatherings, girls’ or friends’ night out and date nights.
Firstly, the customer service is friendly and personable. The Manager Sam is lovely and very knowledgeable of wines and Chef Leinai brings her delicious dishes right to your table, with a smile.
The food is surprisingly quite delicious. I only say “surprisingly” because it seems that not many people do not yet know about this hidden gem, which is why I am writing about it. I want Almquist to thrive so that I can continue to saunter down Queen Anne hill for a lovely wine tasting experience. Most of the shareable dishes have a Hawaiian flare and are created by talented Chef Leinai, formerly of Trove. I believe that her crispy truffle fries might be the best in town.
Award-winning Almquist wines are delicious and feature unique blends incorporating varietals such as Sangiovese, Barbera, Grenache, Petit Verdot and Syrah. For white wine lovers, our group especially loved the Muscat and steel-aged Chardonnay. Almquist also has single grape varietals, such as their 2008 Nebbiolo and 2008, both of which will be poured on the tasting room now until December, to celebrate crush.
A unique production technique lies in the Almquist fermentation strategy, where Winemaker Mike Almquist conducts 20 plus yeast trials throughout the taste trials for every barrel of wine. The goal is to achieve the best tasting wine for each bottle produced. Comparatively, many winemakers only conduct 5-6 yeast trials.
Who knew that Seattle has an winery that has earned more than 200 awards with delicious food, great service and a view in the middle of Fremont and Queen Anne? A hidden gem. Stay tuned for more reviews on recommended Seattle urban wine tasting rooms.
IF YOU GO
- ABILITY TO UNPLUG RATING: Low. The cell coverage here is good, so you will have to work extra hard to focus on interacting with your friends and not being distracted by your device.
- Tasting room hours: Wednesdays through Saturdays, 2-9 pm and Sundays, 2-6 pm.
- There is plenty of parking in front of Almquist Winery.
- SURROUNDING AREA: If you want to make a full night of it, after spending time at the Winery head across the bridge to Fremont and meander the local offerings of bars and restaurants.
- If you decide to visit Almquist Family Winery, please come back to this post and share your impressions.
Almquist Family Cellars is an urban tasting room tucked between the Seattle neighborhoods of Fremont and Queen Anne at 198 Nickerson Street, two blocks West of the Fremont drawbridge.
Our first visit to Almquist Family Winery was inspired by our friend Brandie’s recommendation and our daughter Bella’s invitation to sleep over at a friend’s house. We can walk to Almquist from our house, so it made for a great date night happy hour.
My second visit was for girls night out, with friends Keelan, Melinda and Theresa. We ordered lots of the small, delicious bites to share while exploring flights of Almquist wines.