People are enjoying a Cab with their Lab, a Riesling with their Rotty, and a Pinot with their Pom. Apparently bringing the pooch along on a wine tasting has become a thing.
There’s even a local blog with one purpose: to make sure you know which Woodinville wineries are dog-friendly. The blogger is wine and dog enthusiast Lisa Zeitler. “I started the blog simply as a creative outlet. You’re supposed to write what you know and what you love, and wine and dogs fit those two categories. It made sense to combine the two.”
Zeitler’s blog Canines And Cabernet offers a comprehensive list of Woodinville wineries that she considers dog-friendly.
“If the winery has a kitchen, for health code reasons they are not legally allowed to have dogs on premises, but that’s the only real block I’ve run across. Otherwise it comes down to whether the winery is dog-tolerant or actually goes the extra mile by having treats and toys behind the counter and a water bowl.”
Dog-friendly is admittedly a subjective term. Some “dog-friendly” wineries allow dog lovers to leash their dogs outside, while others allow dogs in the tasting room. The most dog-friendly wineries Zeitler’s encountered?
“Red Sky winery and JM Cellars are exceptionally dog-friendly. And the girl working at Barrage Cellars actually taught my puppy to lie down while my dad and I were wine tasting there, so we left with a better-trained dog than when we got there,” she said.
The wine plus dog thing has taken off nationally, too. Renowned wine tourist website American Winery Guide lists wineries across the country based on pet-friendliness. There were 750 listed — but that number in reality is probably a lot larger. California wineries lead the pack, Virginia is second, and Washington is coming in third.
Zeitler has her own theory on why dogs and wineries have become a thing. “I think once people have had a few glasses of wine they’re friendlier and more open to talk to people, and I think a dog is just a natural ice-breaker. You walk into a tasting room and people who might normally be shy will be attracted to a dog and strike up conversation with you.”
Brian Carter, owner of Brian Carter Cellars, agrees. That’s why twice a year Carter has an event called Puppies on the Patio. “It’s become a very popular event. We just put the word out: Bring your dog, a leash, and a poop bag.” It also benefits the Humane Society and other animal groups. “Dogs are popular, wine is popular, makes sense to bring them together.”
Dogs and wineries. Who knew, right? But Zeitler says don’t hold your breath waiting for cats and wineries to become a thing. “Have you met too many cats that like a roomful of people?”
Zeitler’s blog lists upward of 50 wineries that welcome your furry friends with open paws. So next weekend, round up the pup, check out Zeitler’s blog, pick a winery, and then sit and stay.
Some of our favorite dog-friendly wineries
1. Airfield Estates Winery
2. Brian Carter Cellars
3. Barrage Cellars
4. Des Voigne Cellars
5. Flying Dreams Winery
6. JM Cellars
7. Red Sky Winery
8. Barons Winery
9. Zebra Cellars