Inside this nondescript building on NW 49th Street hides a surprising new addition to an industrial part of Ballard: a new winery called Domanico Cellars.
Jason and Jill Domanico are a husband and wife team who are passionate about three things: family, wine and Ballard. They have a four-year-old daughter, both have full-time jobs and now a winery in a neighborhood not known for wine. “We’ve always been pretty community-centric and we’re pretty proud of Ballard,” Jason says about their decision to open here. As far as they know, Animale is the only other winery in the neighborhood.
The Domanicos use grapes that come from three different vineyards in eastern Washington, and the couple is very hands-on during harvest. “It’s exhausting,” Jason says. They’ve been making wine since 2003, and their first commercial vintage is the 2006. “We are very excited to finally see this dream come to fruition,” Jill says. They make a Cabernet Sauvignon, a Merlot, “Mesa Rojo” or red table wine and a Riesling. Wine Advocate’s Robert Parker gave their Le Monstre (the Cab) a score of 90 points (outstanding.) “I walked on air for a couple of days” after hearing about the rating.
The tasting room at 825 NW 49th St. is open during the holidays on Saturdays from noon to 5 p.m. and Sundays from 11 a.m. to 4 p.m. This weekend they’re holding a food and item drive for the Ballard Food Bank. Bring in two items and get 10% off your wine purchase. If you’re looking for a Thanksgiving wine, Jason says their Riesling, which is drier than most, would be perfect with turkey.