Mike and I took a little vacation out to Prosser and Walla Walla this past week because Sip in Washington had been invited to tour the Hedges Family Estate on Red Mountain. As we were driving through the desert, I began to see all these small vineyards and my emotions ran so high I felt like a child in a fun center. I was so overwhelmed by the simple beauty of the rolling hills and a feeling of knowing that this was the place for me. I couldn’t sit still I was so excited and if I could have rotated my head in a 360, I would have so I wouldn’t have missed anything.
When we reached Hedges, we were lucky enough to have Sarah Hedges Goedhart emerge from her laboratory and take us on the grand tour. She graciously poured us a tasting, explaining the rich history behind the graceful wines and the beautiful family estate. The deep Red Mountain hills were rolling, the vines were perfectly rowed and I could feel the love , the romance, and the passion radiating from Sarah as she talked about her family. Tom and Anne-Marie Hedges have brought a sense of romance from Champagne France that is visually evident in the grounds and permeates the wine. The passion is overwhelming and the family loyalty is admirable. I was entranced with the family wines that are produced from the estate. I also learned that the Goedhart Family label was once separate estate and business that has since merged with Hedges.
Pete Hedges, Sarah’s Uncle, is the current executive winemaker for the estate; however, Sarah Hedges Goedhart will be taking the lead and producing her first harvest for the estate label in 2015 . I curiously asked Sarah what her secret was and her answer: ” Get your ingredients, move forward with them and never try to make the same wine every year because your vintage will always be different.” The wines hold fast to the Bordeaux style blends that Washington wine lovers-love so much. HIP (House of Independent Producer) was created to highlight single varietal wines, wonderful Chardonnay. I really enjoyed the Goedhart Family 2010 Syrah, which they use as a source for their Rose, very lovely. The story that backs their flagship wine, Hedges Family Estate Red Mountain, as stated from their site is a wine that represents all vineyard blocks farmed within the Hedges Family Estate Vineyard portfolio.
The family strongly believes in farming the land biodynamically, keeping the soil clean so that the grape can remain true to flavor. John Gomez, vineyard manager, states that once you start farming you will never stop until the day you die. The beauty, the wine, and the family environment is amazing. Hedges Red Mountain is a staple in the Washington State industry and every wine lover must visit The Guardians of Red Mountain.
Sarah thank you so much for taking the time to give us the wonderful tour of your beautiful home!
Kimberlea author of sipinwashington.com.