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Armstrong Family Winery

Jen is from New Jersey, Tim is from Wisconsin – we fell in love with each other in Milwaukee and fell in love with wine while living in Chicago. Our path eventually brought us to Washington State in pursuit of our dream to craft world-class wine. 

Shortly after college, Tim was on a business trip in New York and was served a glass of wine that both blew him away and quietly planted a seed. In the years the followed, a deeper interest in wine developed. Slowly at first, but more quickly after we were married, our mutual enthusiasm for hand-crafted wine evolved into a passion at first and then into an absolute obsession.

As career-oriented newlyweds in living in Chicago, we developed a particular interest in the wines of Bordeaux. The more we learned, the more curious we became about the winemaking process. To satisfy our curiosity, Tim enrolled in a long-distance winemaking class offered by UC Davis. As Tim watched the recorded lectures each night, Jen was right by his side. It turns out the class didn’t satisfy our curiosity – it fed it! The more we learned, the more fascinated we became, not only with what was in our glass but often, even more so, in the many other elements of wine: history, culture, farming, geography, climate, chemistry and the fascinating, hard-working people making it all happen. Eventuality, there was no denying it, we decided that wine was a great fit. We were thrilled and consumed by the idea of committing our own efforts and resources to this ancient craft. Once you’ve been bitten by the bug, there is no turning back.

Chicago wasn’t a likely a locale for pursuing our interests in making wine so, in the years that followed, the curiosity persisted and we considered all sorts of destinations. As our interest grew, our careers and our family grew as well. Finally, in 2010, while expecting our second child, a perfect storm of coincidence and career came together. A bottle of Walla Walla Merlot that we discovered in a local wine shop was particularly reminiscent of the wines of Bordeaux we had already come to love. Shortly after enjoying that bottle, Tim’s career in the software industry presented an opportunity to relocate to the Redmond area. During our first house-hunting trip, we discovered Woodinville and the rest, as they say, is history. 

Before our furniture had arrived on the moving truck, Tim was volunteering his nights and weekends at a winery in the Warehouse District.  The following year, with two young children in tow, we found a vineyard in the Yakima Valley that was willing to sell us 6 tons of grapes. Our own winemaking endeavor began in earnest in 2011.


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