Toast Downtown Issaquah Wine Walk as series ends for season

April 3, 2012

By Warren Kagarise

Visitors on Front Street who enjoyed wine tastings, snacks and live music in February during the Downtown Issaquah Association’s Wine Walk have one more chance on April 6. By Greg Farrar

Oenophiles can sip and stroll through town as the Downtown Issaquah Wine Walk series concludes for the season April 6.

Organized by the DownTown Issaquah Association, merchants host musicians, and offer sips from Washington vintners and hors d’oeuvres, during the monthly event. The inaugural Downtown Issaquah Wine Walk occurred in February.

“We got a lot of people down here that had either never been to downtown Issaquah or hadn’t been down here in a long time,” association Executive Director Karen Donovan said. “I’ve gotten a lot of great feedback from people saying how much they enjoyed it. They enjoyed the music and the appetizers and the wine, of course.”

The featured wineries for the April event include Des Voigne Cellars, Nardone Wine, Plumb Cellars, Sapolil Cellars, Smasne Cellars and Upland Estates.

Organizers added a venue for the upcoming event. Participants can stop at Confetti Cupcakes and sample a dessert wine — Upland Estates’ Ampeli Ice. The wine tastes reminiscent of honey lime drops.

If you go

Downtown Issaquah Wine Walk

  • April 6
  • Participants can start the check-in process at 4 p.m. The event runs from 5-8 p.m.
  • Tickets cost $20 in advance or $25 at the door. Participants must be 21 or older to purchase wine-tasting tickets. Organizers provide a map of tasting locations, wine glasses, tokens and wristbands at check-in.

Participants can also sip Nardone Wine vintages and listen to harpist Natalie Skerlong at Illuminate. Other downtown merchants — including artbyfire, artEAST, Mills Music, Museo Art Academy, Village Theatre and Vino Bella — plan to join the event, too.

The latest show at the artEAST Art Center — “The Rookery Project” — opens the same night as the event. In the show, 30 local artists envisioned herons in different media.

The musical offerings for the evening include the band Acoustic Couti at the artEAST Art Center and Hejira at artbyfire.

The merchants group launched the Downtown Wine Walk Series to attract attention — and patrons — to businesses amid the slow winter months.

“It’s a nice intimate gathering in each of the locations,” Donovan said.

The organization plans to continue — and expand — the program next year. The series concludes less than a month before the spring and summer ArtWalk returns. Downtown merchants will host the initial ArtWalk on May 4.

“It’s a different crowd than the ArtWalk,” Donovan said of the Wine Walks. “Even though it’s family-friendly and there were art projects for the kids, we didn’t see a lot of kids. It was definitely an older crowd.”

Warren Kagarise: 392-6434, ext. 234, or Comment at

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