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We are thrilled with how well our wines are preforming! Check out the most recent medals from the Savor Northwest Wine Awards.

  • 2013 Syrah – Gold medal
  • 2011 Reserve Petite Sirah – Silver medal
  • 2015 Blossom, Rosè of Sangiovese – Bronze medal

eastmeetswestwinecompThe Williamson Family and Staff are very excited to announce that the following wines have been awarded medals at the 2017 “East Meets West” West Coast Wine Competition!

  • 2013 Williamson Vineyards Syrah – Gold Medal
  • 2015 Williamson Vineyards Blossom ~ Rose of Sangiovese – Silver Medal

 

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For most of a century, Treasure Valley customers drove out in the fall to Williamson Orchards on Idaho 55 west of Nampa to buy apricots, peaches, apples and cherries. A trip to the Williamson family’s fruit stand offered customers a chance to buy fresh, local, flavorful fruit and perhaps to talk to a member of the Williamson family.

To supplement stand sales, the Willliamsons packed and sold fruit for grocers. Over time, though, grocers opted increasingly for fruit picked green that could travel long distances. As profits dwindled, the need to reinvest in the business loomed.

The family decided a change was needed. They had planted 28 acres of vineyards in 1998 for nearby Ste. Chapelle, Idaho’s oldest and largest winery. Five years ago, they decided to sell their packing house, phase out the tree-fruit business and concentrate on growing wine grapes. Last year, they closed the fruit stand.

Today, Williamson Orchards, one of the Treasure Valley’s most recognizable century farms, has mostly completed the transition across on the Sunnyslope near the Snake River. Control has passed from the third generation, Roger Williamson, 66 and John Williamson, 64, to their three children, Mike, 39, Bev, 36, and Patrick, who just turned 29.

They are becoming leaders in Idaho’s wine industry. On Tuesday, Feb. 14, as the Idaho Wine Commission begins its annual industry meeting in Boise, the Williamson name is recognized both for grapes and wine.

“We had very loyal customers for long time at our fruit stand, but three families can’t eat on what a fruit stand does,” said Roger’s son, Mike, the operations manager at Williamson Orchards and Vineyards. “We can have the wine tasting room open all year around.”

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This winter certainly packed a whollap. Does the fridgid temperatures and piles of snow leave you wondering what does this mean for Idaho wine country? Mike Williamson, our operations manager spoke with the Wines and Vines Magazine about just that very topic.

Wines and Vines Article

We will be starting an event series called Wine Down Wednesday at Williamson’s. Starting in March 2017, these events will take place the third Wednesday of every month and will be held after business hours. We’re planning all kinds of fun things for the year such as: Wine & Cheese Pairing, Chocolate & Wine Pairing, Yoga & Wine, and Trivia Night, just to name a few! Stayed tuned for details each month.


Our first event for the year will be a wine & cheese pairing with Eden Creamery on March 15, 2017. Asaf Dayan, from Kuna, is as passionate about the many different styles of goat cheese as we are about wine! This should be a very informative and tasty evening. We will be sending out more information about this event in the near future.

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Temperatures have been harsh across most of Idaho’s grape growing regions and we are in the wait and hope time of winter. Our vineyards have so much snow that it’s difficult to get into them right now. Mike and Pat are remaining busy with planning for the next growing season. They are also thinking logistically about planting our new grapevines and any replacement vines we will need. They will start pruning our old vines by the end of February and will probably be taking off a little less depending on how the bud swells are looking.

We’re proud to announce that our wines have been receiving recognition from several respected wine rating entities.

  • Wine Enthusiast rated our
    • 2012 Harvest Moon Red – 88 points
    • 2012 Sangiovese – 87 points
    • 2012 Cabernet Sauvignon – 85 points
  • The San Francisco Chronicle Wine Competition awarded the following:
Williamson Orchards & Vineyards is proud to partner with our friends at 107.9 LITE-FM to honor Hard Working Women across the Treasure Valley. Congrats to Shanna Vail, our first honoree, she was nominated by Amber, who shared this:

Shanna is completely selfless. She is a lovely wife of a 21 year marriage, mother of 2 amazing kiddos, works as full time nurse, along with, maintaining an active household.

Her husband Sam travels frequently for work so it leaves her to maintain a household with 2 busy teenagers. She runs the errands, get them to & goes to all their sporting events, and just keeps her household running.

I don’t know how she does it all. She is so graceful, never complains, & has raised an amazing family virtually on her own. I don’t know of any other woman like her or one who could do what she does with such poise & respect. She truly is a hard working & amazing woman. Did I mention BSU graduate?

Thanks for all you do Shanna, and congratulations from the Williamson family and 107.9 LITE-FM.  We hope you enjoy some of our incredible wine as our way of recognizing how hard you work at all you do.
To honor a hard working woman in your life, check out LITE-FM.

 

fall-color-vinesIt’s beautiful out in the vineyard– we are seeing some awesome fall colors! Harvest is wrapping up and we are waiting on just a few grape varieties that require longer hang time, like Mouvedre, Sangiovese and Petite Sirah.  We’ll soon finish with the late-harvest grapes and ice wines.

With winter just around the corner we are starting to slow down our vines in order to get them ready for bed. This means spreading out our watering, i.e. short bursts of water and longer intervals between.

We have already started to pull bird netting off the vines. This is also the time of year to cultivate our cover crop between the rows. We plow under the cover crop in the fall to add nutrients back to the soil. Then we turn around and plant next year’s cover crop, typically a drought-tolerant rye grass. In the Spring, cover crops help by soaking up excess water in the soil, preventing erosion and crowding out unwanted weeds. sunrise-harvest

Overall, the 2016 harvest has been fantastic. Bud break came early and the vines followed through with this early schedule all the way through harvest. We saw high yields, in part due to optimal weather when the fruit was setting. This resulted in some cluster thinning to maintain the quality of the remaining crop. The late summer and early fall weather was perfect weather for ripening grapes allowing the grapes to gain more sugars and bright fruit acids. With temperatures hanging around the mid-60 degrees and with little-to-no rain or frost events, we had a smooth and timely harvest. Both Mike and Patrick enjoyed the favorable pace and agreed that the 2016 harvest shows some real potential for being a great vintage.

 

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We were overwhelmed by the amount of support that local wine lovers and our amazing wine clubs members showed for our new tasting room. Thank you to everyone who came out to help us celebrate our grand opening. It was a huge success!

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