Archive for the ‘wine tour’ Category

Penny the Pill Post: Spring Barrel Weekends!

Friday, April 17th, 2015

SpringBarrel1Today marks the official kick off to Spring Barrel Weekends and my owner is so excited to try out new releases, drink wine from the barrel and meet new friends along the way.  Because it’s such a busy weekend, she tasked me with staying home and researching the wineries, their hours and anything extra fun happening at their facility.  Since there are 100 wineries in the Yakima Valley, I requested some help from my fellow Wine Doggies.  They were willing to share some of their stories too!

But first, let me tell you some of my own findings.  Most wineries are open at 11AM, but Windy Point Vineyards is open at 10:00AM and the views are just spectacular! Agate Field Vineyard will have pulled pork sandwiches available – I hope my owner brings me some leftovers. For details specific to this weekend, you’ll want to visit our Yakima Valley Tourism website.  Make sure to check it quite often because you don’t want to miss out on any of the festivities!! Well, now that you have some ideas for Spring Barrel Weekends, this little Pill is going to relax by the fire while my owner sips on her Merlot.  In the meantime, check out the latest from my buddy Bung at Bonair Winery and Vineyards.



Happy Tourist Season from your friend BUNG THE WONDER DOG. Winemaker Bill and I are hanging out together in the barrel cave. We’re getting ready for Spring Barrel Tasting at the wineries in my neighborhood, the Rattlesnake Hills near Zillah. Bill and I like to work on those red wines and we’ve got a woofing good wine, a Petit Verdot, for you all to barrel taste.

Come on out and spend time with us anytime on April 24th-26th to join in the festivities. Miz. Dee from Yakima is serving her finger licking ribs and chicken!  She is my best friend on those days- she knows how to make a doggie happy with those little tidbits! (Sorry Penny – I’m not even going to promise any leftovers) She is a lot smarter than I am and knows I can only have a little bit, as my doggie nose and mouth just run wild with those flavors!!

Please join us all here at Bonair Winery for some wonderful wines and great wine deals.  I will happily pose with you for a picture or two!  We are open every single day from 10-5 and

The Wonder Dog


WOOF! Yakima Valley in a National Geographic guide book

Wednesday, April 9th, 2014

Arf! Arf!  Read All About it!  I’m woofingly proud to announce that Yakima Valley is a featured destination in National Geographic’s The Dog Lover’s Guide to Travel!

My human brought home this amazing book about dog friendly travel to cities and regions throughout the United States and Canada.  I pawed directly to the Northwest section and Yakima Valley is one of two Washington State destinations covered in the book.  It includes a variety of information on pooch friendly wineries, hotels, attractions and even a contact for emergency pet services.

Bow Wow Hooray for Yakima Valley!!!

It’s Warming Up in the Yakima Valley

Friday, March 14th, 2014

My friend Bung from Bonair Winery has spring fever with the warm temperatures and sunshine so he wanted me to send our readers a little note:
Bung the Wonder Dog

Hi, from your friend Bung the Wonder Dog. I have that name because I Wonder when my wine lover friends are going to start coming with their picnics and tidbits for me to share with them. It has been a long lonely winter and now all of a sudden the sun is out, it is warm outside, and I am ready to share my love with all of you. Please come and give my tummy a rub on your way in to taste some wonderful Bonair Wines. We are open every day from 10-5.
Nothing more relaxing than to sit out beside the duck pond and enjoy a glass of wine and pet me.

Bung’s Holiday Open House at Bonair Winery

Tuesday, December 17th, 2013

Harvest and crush have ended and the holidays are upon us in Washington Wine Country.  Bung, the Wonder Dog of Bonair Winery asked that I pass along an invitation to my canine friends and their humans. 

Bung is starting a new tradition this year at Bonair called Bung’s Holiday Open House.  Over the weekend of December 21-22, 2013, from 11am to 4pm, well-behaved doggies are invited into the winery’s tasting room to engage in holiday cheer and enjoy Bungy Bones, a special treat for pups.  If your humans are well-behaved, they may partake in a FREE reserve wine tasting and shop for the winos on their Christmas lists.  Canines must remain on a leash while in the tasting room and also outside if you have a tendency to chase ducks.  “That would be me.” Speaking of those funny fowl, duck treats will be on hand to share with the Bonair ducks.   

If I can nudge my owner out the door into the winter weather, I hope to attend.  It would be fun to spend some time with Bung since it’s been quite a while since we have hung out.  “I promise I won’t chase the ducks!”

Wishing you and yours a Bow Wow Holiday Season!

What Makes a Wine Dog?

Friday, October 25th, 2013

Woofings!  My friend Gus at Two Mountain Winery pawed an essay about the tasks of a wine dog for a lecture he had to present at an Association of Winery Dogs (AWD) vineyard meeting.  Read on to see what it takes!  – Cooper

What Makes A Wine Dog?

Among its acres of green, the vineyard life—muddy ponds for swimming, sage rats for chasing, and ample land to explore—is a dream. And on days under bright sun and blue sky, kept in the back of my large Labrador brain, I am reminded why. But being a wine dog isn’t about the glamour you can sniff on our behinds. It’s hard work and grit, honor and privilege.

Because I am a lifer—having served the entirety of my eleven years on this expansive orchard—I have seen the new ones come and the good ones go. Along the way, I have seen what makes a good wine dog a great one. That distinction rests in the defense of the rights proclaimed by our Founding Dogfathers—Drunkard, Taster, Tipler and Tipsy, the great Coonhounds of the first President George Washington himself (don’t believe me, look it up). The unalienable rights of liberty, freedom, and the pursuit of happiness.

Whether that happiness is derived from gracious tasting room picnickers in the form of cheese is irrelevant. What matters is the job at hand. Alerting family when a customer is here, when an alarm has gone off, or when a UPS truck has arrived is essential for daily functioning. Escorting people into the tasting room. Barking at barn cats. Providing companionship to winemakers consumed by harvest, out late pressing, crushing, processing fruit. All important tasks.

In the end, it is not an easy job (which is why we do so much napping). But if you are a good winery dog you will be rewarded for it with the highest honor of them all: the belly scratch.

Wine dogs new and old, uphold your honorable positions, wag your mighty tails, and chase those vineyard pests with patriotic enthusiasm. It is your service! It is your calling!!

Agustus “Gus” Gustafson
Association of Winery Dogs, President
Two Mountain Winery

Bung the Wonder Dog on Harvest at Bonair Winery

Monday, September 30th, 2013

My buddy, Bung the Wonder Dog at Bonair Winery  took time out of his busy day to show me some of his harvest “duties.”  Look at these photos demonstrating his hard work ensuring his humans are harvesting and preparing the grapes properly for the wine making process.  Bung secretly told me that he needs to watch over Bill, “the winemaker” to ensure that Bonair’s wine is created with much care and attention. 



Bung gets in the truck early in the morning to go to work.   Always waiting…






Supervising the press to make sure the pan does not overflow.

“Bill, I think you need to turn the pump on.”





Bung is Bonair’s number 1 forklift driver.







“Human, there are too many stems in the bin. They need to be shoveled.”






Overseeing Bill, the Bonair winemaker, as he shovels the stems to keep the stemmer

crusher clean.













Yakima Valley Canine and Wine Walk

Thursday, May 2nd, 2013

Here’s a good cause that you and your four legged canine friends can enjoy in the sunny Yakima Valley. On Saturday May 11th our friends at Cherry Wood Bed Breakfast and Barn are hosting Canine and Wine Walk (suggested donation is $10, event starts at 11:00 a.m.) It’s a fun walk through the vineyards to wine tasting rooms with your dogs or just on your own and all proceeds benefit rescued pets.

Yakima Valley Pet Rescue (YVPR) and Cherry Wood  are teaming up again for the 5th year of this event. The walk can be as easy or extensive as you’d like. Many nearby wineries participate. Be sure to wear clothing appropriate for a country walk. Lunch is served at Cultura Winery by YVPR volunteers for $5.00 donation. Of course extra donations are appreciated!

Hope you join our canine friends for a fun filled day.