LOCATION: 3450 Cathedral Rock Rd, Malaga, Washington | (509) 679-0152
It was a beautiful blue day with a landscape of changing fiery colors all over the hills. After a pretty scenic drive along the winding orchard-lined country road, we found the winery perched at the base of the basalt cliffs in Malaga, Wa. What I discovered is Al and Kathy Mathews built their new sustainable tasting room themselves, complete with an expansive patio and an upstairs room with fireplace and bar for future small events. They used a mix of local wood and rusted copper to achieve a nautural look that blends with the nature around them. I also discovered Al makes and sells his own beatiful pottery pieces and makes their own Super Natural Honey produced from the honeybees that live on the winery. Malaga Springs Winery is open during the Winter months on weekends (Friday-Sunday), but will be closed from January 1 to February 14th.
Malaga Springs Winery is located along the steep rocky slopes of the Columbia River at the base of the magnificent basalt columns in Malaga, Wa. The place where Washington's first grapes were brought over from Spain in the late 1800's to supply the railroad builders with wine grapes. The spectacular basalt cliffs perform a double function; they are solar collectors during the day and heating during the night and early morning hours keeping the vines at an optimum temperature. They also underlie the deposited soils, so that the grapes roots penetrate and surround this terrific source of minerality.
After a long search the winery owners, Al & Kathy Mathews were lucky to have found what they believe to be grape plants from the original stock of vines from 1800's. Malaga Springs Winery started as a small vineyard from these cuttings, with the aim of producing what would have been the local wine years ago.
The wineries sustainable straw bale buildings, and farming styles are well suited to the natural environment, with all the wildflowers and critters still at home in the mostly undisturbed valley grasses.