A DISTINGUISHED U.S. WINERY
Earning numerous accolades since its creation in 1992, DeLille Cellars continues to receive stellar ratings from leading wine publications. DeLille Cellars also holds the coveted position for both a red and white wine (D2 and Chaleur Estate Blanc, respectively) in the ‘Top 100’ Guides of Wine Spectator and Wine Enthusiast.
ONE OF WASHINGTON’S MOST ESTEEMED WINEMAKERS
With over two decades of winemaking at DeLille Cellars, Chris Upchurch has garnered over 180 wines with successive vintages of 90+ ratings and nearly 400 wines with 90+ scores from top publications such as Robert Parker’s Wine Advocate, Stephen Tanzer’s International Wine Cellar/Vinous, Wine Spectator and Wine Enthusiast.
ICONIC VINEYARDS OF WASHINGTON STATE
DeLille Cellars has a sterling reputation for sourcing fruit from the oldest and most respected vineyards in Washington State, including Ciel du Cheval, Upchurch, Boushey, Harrison Hill, Red Willow, Klipsun, Quintessence, and their estate vineyard on Red Mountain, Grand Ciel.
A WASHINGTON STATE VANGUARD OF BORDEAUX BLENDS
DeLille Cellars is considered a principal influence in establishing Washington as a premier viticultural region. Regarded as one of the pioneer producers of Bordeaux-style blends, the focus has been on showcasing the powerful, concentrated and structured fruit of Washington State through the European art of blending – not only through the combination of Bordeaux grape varieties, but also marrying celebrated vineyards to express the unique terroir of the region.
A Bordeaux Beginning
DeLilleCellarsis a boutique artisan winery located in Woodinville, Washington. The winery was founded in 1992 by Charles and Greg Lill, Jay Soloff and celebrated winemaker Chris Upchurch. The mission at DeLille Cellars has always been to create a new Bordeaux blend using Washington State vineyards. From the beginning, the winery has looked towards the prestigious Red Mountain AVA as the foundation of its wines, using grapes from its own vineyards in combination with fruit from other top sites in the Yakima Valley.
In 1992, the winery pioneered its Chaleur Estate Rouge and D2, both blends of Cabernet Sauvignon, Merlot, and Cabernet Franc. We believed that blending Cabernet Sauvignon and Merlot in the traditional style would create wines in which each varietal would contribute its own attributes and would create classically structured wines in which the whole is greater than the sum of the parts, wines that showcase the purity of fruit that defines Washington State terroir, a “first growth” wine from some of the oldest vines in the state. This belief remains one of the winery’s guiding principles today.
In 1994, DeLille Cellars was fortunate to acquire the rights to Harrison Hill vineyard which is home to some of the oldest vines in Washington. Now, with vines over 50 years old, Harrison Hill has become one of the most sought after Bordeaux blends in the state.
Observing the Bordeaux tradition of blending varietals together, in 1995 we chose to make a barrel fermented blend of Sauvignon Blanc and Semillon for our first white wine: DeLille’s Chaleur Estate Blanc. We knew this would create a wine with more complexity, diverse aromas and classic structure than many white varietal wines and which would pair well with a wide variety of food. From the first, we achieved nuances of white flowers, sweet grass, honey suckle, creamy crème brûlée, toasted almonds and more. Over the years, Chaleur Estate Blanc has shown us all just how well a properly structured white wine can age.
Today, DeLille Cellars remains very prominent on the Red Mountain AVA with our own 20 acre vineyard along with other top sites in the Yakima Valley. Currently DeLille Cellars produces six Bordeaux-styled wines including Grand Ciel, Chaleur Estate Rouge, D2, Harrison Hill, Four Flags and Chaleur Estate Blanc. Also produced are the Doyenne wines which include classic northern Rhône Syrah – awarded by Robert Parker Jr. of Wine Advocate as one of the great 15 Syrahs of the world; a Roussanne; Métier, a Southern Rhône-style red wine; AIX, a Provence-style red wine and a Bandol-style Rosé. Robert Parker Jr. of the Wine Advocate also rated DeLille Cellars and Doyenne as two of the top 12 Washington producers, bestowing the title of the “Lafite Rothschild” of Washington State. DeLille Cellars is the only Washington winery to receive recognition in the “Top 100 Wines” by both the Wine Spectator and Wine Enthusiast for two consecutive years.