Call: (509) 529-5980
Hours: Daily 10 am – 5 pm
Established in 2001, Cougar Crest Estate Winery is located in the Walla Walla Valley of Washington State. Walla Walla Valley is recognized as the premier place to grow grapes in Washington, and Cougar Crest is one of the finest wineries in the region.
Through tireless wine making innovation, Cougar Crest continues to be one of the premier wine producers from the Walla Walla Valley. The winery has been awarded many prestigious awards for their varietals. Cougar Crest operates tasting rooms in Woodinville, Walla Walla, and Spokane Washington.
Cougar Crest's Noble Rock Estate Vineyard is located in The Rocks of Milton-Freewater AVA. This new sub-appellation of the Walla Walla Valley is unique because of the ubiquitous river rock that saturates the soil profile from the surface to way below the roots of the plants. Our Syrah from this vineyard has the savory, gamey characteristics that this AVA is known for.
Deborah Hansen is the winemaker at Cougar Crest Estate Winery. Her first career began in the 1970′s as a pharmacist with a degree from Washington State University. The scientific preparation for being a pharmacist just happens to be a perfect match for the preparation to be a winemaker. Back in the 1970′s this connection was a long time from being discovered. True love intervened and Deborah married veterinarian David Hansen, also a graduate of Washington State University; their careers took them to the San Francisco area for almost 20 years.
While living in the Bay Area, they discovered a mutual love of wine, and agriculture and made plans to “move home” in the future. Northern California was burgeoning with wineries from Mendocino to Santa Barbara. Time off was spent being a wine tourist, studying the differences that terrior and winemaking styles can have on finished wine. While working and raising children in California, the Hansen’s were busy making plans in the Walla Walla Valley, buying several small farms and planting apple orchards in the hopes of moving home some day.
In 1996, the dream became a reality and the family moved home. Raising children on the farms in a small community seemed idyllic until the apple markets plummeted, resulting in some difficult choices. The love of wine led to the decision to remove orchards and plant vineyards. The Hansens became a part of the wine community first by raising grapes, which led to dabbling in winemaking. Suddenly it was obvious that being a pharmacist had been the perfect training for winemaking. Deborah and David became consumed with plans to have their own winery, and it was apparent that Deborah had the skills for becoming the winemaker. She went back to school at UC Davis to take specialized enology classes. She found new passion for learning and the desire to excel at this ancient art of winemaking. It is the discovery of new wines and the challenges of new vintages that excite Deborah in her new career as winemaker at Cougar Crest Estate Winery.