Tuesday is National Drink Wine Day, an ever more popular past time in Western Washington. However, the drink has to share customers with a growing alcohol industry.
In the 9 years since William Church Winery opened, the number of wineries in Woodinville has increased from 17 to more than 100.
“If you make good wine and you treat people well and you do fun things, people are going to come and find you," said Owner Linda Balsley. “We’re not really worried about it even though there are new wineries opening all the time.”
Even so, the number of breweries continues to rise. Bad Jimmy's Brewing Company opened in Ballard on December 27.
“There’s 10 of us now within a square mile," said co-owner Seth Mashni. “Sure, we’re all making an IPA or we’re all making a red. They all taste different.”
Senators in Olympia have also made a move in support of Washington's craft distilleries. They passed a bill Tueaday that would remove several sales restrictions, allowing distillers to offer free samples.
Distillers could also sell more of their product for off-premises consumption.
The bill will now head to the House of Representatives.
The growth of alcohol-related businesses begs the question: will they run out of customers?
“In Washington state? I don’t think so," laughed Judy Thomas (while drinking wine).