Wautoma Springs Vineyard
Wautoma Wines, Washington Wine
Wautoma Springs Vineyard

Welcome to Wautoma Wines.

Wautoma Wines flow from the partnership between a vineyard manager and a winemaker, each devoted to showcasing the best of Washington Wine Country. Two of Washington wine country’s much-acclaimed vineyards provide the grapes from which Wautoma Wines are created.

Tom Merkle – vineyard owner and manager – and Jessica Munnell – winemaker – met in the middle of Columbia Valley’s Wautoma Springs vineyard in January 2000. Working together, they became friends. Which would later develop into a business partnership.

Jessica Munnell


Jessica Munnell of Wautoma WinesIn 2003, Jessica left viticulture for winemaking, beginning with an internship in Australia. She later returned to the states for an enology position with Snoqualmie Winery. In 2005, she began work at Canoe Ridge and worked her way up to an Assistant Winemaker position with Chateau Ste. Michelle.

After a few years away from full-time wine industry involvement to begin raising a family, Jessica approached Tom Merkle about working together to create a wine that featured his grapes. A partnership was formed in 2008 that became Wautoma Wines – made of the best Cabernet Sauvignon from Wautoma Springs and Malbec from Wahluke Slope’s Stone Tree Vineyard.

In addition to her work with Wautoma Springs, Jessica is the head Winemaker for Mercer Estates.

Tom Merkle

Owner/Vineyard Manager

Tom Merkle of Wautoma WinesTom Merkle is a second-generation grape grower. In 1999, he planted the first grapes at his own Wautoma Springs vineyard. That has since developed into a fifty-acre, exclusively Cabernet Sauvignon vineyard supplying fruit to some of the best-known, most-respected wineries in Washington.

In addition to Wautoma Springs, Tom manages several other top-rank vineyards on the Wahluke Slope.

The Wine

2015 Reserve Malbec by Wautoma Wines

2015 Reserve Malbec

Appellation - Wahluke Slope
Blend - 100% Malbec
Alcohol - 14.9% | TA - 5.1 g/L | pH - 3.85
Aging - 20 months in 1 new and 1 used Boutes French Oak barrel

Malbec from StoneTree Vineyard has graceful power with sweet tannins and bright, ripe fruit. For this wine, we selected two barrels out of the six that were produced to create our Reserve Malbec. The inky black color gives you a good indication of the weight and structure of this wine. Ripe black fruits such as blackberry and blueberry give way to hints of fresh figs and white lilies. On the palate, the wine is silky and velvety with flavors of dark chocolate covered blueberries that are lifted with a touch of minerality.

2015 Reserve Cabernet Sauvignon by Wautoma Wines

2015 Reserve Cabernet Sauvignon

Appellation - Columbia Valley
Blend - 100% Cabernet Sauvignon
Alcohol - 14.9% | TA - 4.9 g/L | pH - 3.78
Aging - 20 months in 1 new and 1 used American oak barrel

We selected two barrels out of the four that were produced to showcase what our Wautoma Springs Vineyard can do. This wine is intriguing as it simultaneously exudes ripe fruit and bold rich flavors while still maintaining a flowery nose. This combination is intoxicating. The desolate sandy loam soils that these vines are grown on have produced a wine with sleek, supple tannins. This wine is complex with notes of sage and rosemary along with violets, fresh cherries and fresh crushed black pepper. Black fruit in the nose translates to lush, mouth filling flavors in the palate. Dusty tannins provide balanced structure for this wine.

2013 El Prat Wine by Wautoma Wines

2013 El Prat  |  Red Wine

Appellation - Columbia Valley
Blend - 56% Cabernet Sauvignon, 44% Malbec
Alcohol - 14.5% | TA - 6.1 g/L | pH - 3.6
Aging - 36 months in 1/3 new oak barrels

El Prat showcases the unique complement of two of the Columbia Valley’s best vineyards – Wautoma Springs and the Wahluke Slope’s Stone Tree. Our Wautoma Springs Cabernet Sauvignon contributes elegant, refined tannins and a beautiful, flowery nose, due to the combination of sandy/caliche soils and the use of Cabernet Sauvignon Clone 8. The Stone Tree Malbec brings a graceful power, sweet tannins and bright, ripe fruit to the mix, lifting the overall blend.

El Prat accurately reflects both the terroir and the talent and personality that went into its creation. Aromas of blueberry compote, sweet caramel, vanilla bean, and anise are laced with warm oak undertones. In the mouth, the ripe fruit is balanced with hints of rosemary and savory notes. Aging for 36 months in oak barrels adds complexity and mouth feel.

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