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Off Alley, a tiny wine bar and restaurant in Columbia City, offers some of Seattle’s best natural wine lists.
Suzi Pratt/Eater Seattle

17 Destinations for Exploring Seattle’s Blossoming Natural Wine Scene

A growing number of businesses in the area are offering wines made with wild yeasts, minimal additives, and a respect for the environment

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Off Alley, a tiny wine bar and restaurant in Columbia City, offers some of Seattle’s best natural wine lists.
| Suzi Pratt/Eater Seattle

“Natural,” as a general term and more specifically when applied to wine, both clarifies and obfuscates. As a counterpoint to conventional winemaking, natural winemaking ideally indicates specific practices in sustainable vineyard management, ethical labor standards, and transparent, low-intervention production (winemaking that uses native as opposed to commercial yeast, employs few additives, and is generally “light-handed” during vinification).

Natural wine isn’t characterized by any one style, producer, region, or varietal, but harkens back to traditions that existed before the industrialization of winemaking and agriculture. At its best, low-intervention winemaking produces beverages that simply taste alive — wines that can be elegant, juicy, age-worthy, surprising, and singular. When it comes down to it, natural wine is about the people, decisions, and relationships that are built around expressing, enjoying, and respecting an agricultural product from a specific place and time.

Seattle’s natural wine scene has been growing steadily in the last 10 years, and any of the spots listed below are well-equipped to shed light on the product. Consider this list a starting point in the exploration of natural wine: there are plenty of other bottle shops, cafes, bars, and restaurants in the Seattle area with great natural wine selections. And if you’re still lost on how to shop for, or drink, natural wine, this Eater guide offers some helpful tips.

Know of a spot that should be on our radar? Send us a tip by emailing seattle@eater.com. As usual, this list is not ranked; it’s organized geographically.

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Crunchy Red Fruit

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Tucked between warehouses in South Park’s Cloverdale Business Park, Crunchy Red Fruit is equal parts bottleshop, wine club, and tasting destination. The knowledgeable team led by Canlis alum Jackson Rohrbaugh guides inquiring guests through all things wine, whether the subject matter is affordable yet memorable weeknight drinking or the micro-climates of Crozes-Hermitage. Keep an eye out for periodic warehouse sales for budget picks and rare gems.

fatcork

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Both importer and wine club, Fatcork in Lower Queen Anne supplies Seattle with a delectable portfolio of grower Champagne — sparkling wine from the Champagne appellation that is grown and produced by the same individual or team. Founded by Bryan and Abby Maletis in 2010, Fatcork champions site-specific, low-intervention bubbles that will convert any Champagne skeptic. For your next special occasion, skip on the Dom Perignon and get three game-changing cuvees from Fatcork for the same price instead.

Imperfetta

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Just off the Burke-Gilman trail in Fremont, owner Celia Barber’s wine selection comprises personal favorites from across the globe, and this intimacy makes Imperfetta a top destination for folks looking to step into the confusing and exciting world of small-scale, sustainable winemaking. The shop regularly hosts pop-ups and wine education events as well.

Grape Juice Wine Shop

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A newcomer to the scene, Grape Juice is a bottle shop and wine club nestled in the back of Ballard’s Anchored Ship Coffee Bar. Sheila Mulvihill, wine lover and owner of Anchored Ship, began selling bottles at the end of 2021 and has a concise, well-priced selection of wine to peruse while waiting for a coffee order at the front of the cafe. The pet-nat (naturally sparkling) offerings are particularly joyous, and Grape Juice is a great place to start or continue exploring these bottle-fermented wines.

Left Bank

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Wine bar and bottle shop Left Bank opened several years ago on the corner of 14th and Cloverdale in South Park but feels like it has quietly occupied its nook for much longer. With an Old World-skewing selection, Left Bank is equally a spot to nerd out over uncommon grapes (Aramon, anyone?) or just settle into the cushioned seating area and sip one of the daily glass pours. Fans of now-shuttered sister shop Glinda in Capitol Hill will love a field trip to Left Bank —settle in and hand the wine reins over to owner Campbell Scarborough or any of the kind, knowledgeable staff.

Burien Press

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Burien Press is as laidback as it gets, while also obsessively curating a selection of juicy natural wine since 2009. An all-day cafe serving sweet and savory pastries, salads and sandwiches across the street from Burien’s Town Square Park, Burien Press is South Seattle’s spot for an extensive and dynamic wine selection with a great rotating selection of Washington natural wines. Check out the soon-to-be natural wine bar Fable in Beacon Hill from the team behind Burien Press, opening in Petite Soif’s vacated space.

Union Coffee and Wine

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Geetu Vailoor’s cafe and bottle shop recently celebrated its second birthday, the perfect reason to stop in and choose a bottle from the impeccably stocked walls of wine (and coffee beans, vermouth, and more). Union serves as a Central District community space as well, hosting pop-ups with other local food artisans. Keep an eye out for expansion of by–the-glass offerings and other specials in the coming months.

Molly's Bottle Shop

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Founded in 2019 by Molly Ringe, Molly’s packs every square inch of this 200-square-foot Sunset Hill wine shop with thoughtful, naturally-produced bottles from far-flung regions like Mexico’s Valle de Guadalupe, France’s Dordogne, and Washington’s own San Juan Island. Wines are poured by the glass in the shop (and nextdoor at Baker’s, too), and staff are thrilled to guide visitors based on region, varietal, or stylistic preferences. Molly’s recently opened another (slightly larger) space in West Seattle, so wine lovers to the south don’t need to trek too far for great natural wine.

Halfseas Wine + Bottle Shop

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Ballard’s wine oasis lies under a verdant wisteria arbor through the gates just south of Brimmer & Heeltap. The rows of gem-like bottles, emphasizing niche producers both domestic and international, are a great choice for all occasions. Jen Doak and the staff bring warmth, enthusiasm, and deep knowledge to the natural wine selection process — buying a bottle or two (or six) here is just as fun as actually tasting the wine. Halfseas also offers tiered monthly wine and cheese club subscriptions, and regularly hosts regionally focused evening tastings.

Foundry Vineyards

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 Foundry’s winemaker Jay Anderson farms wine from estate Stonemaker vineyard in Walla Walla and other sustainable vineyards throughout Washington. The Pioneer Square tasting room, led by Natalie Lyons-Cohen inside the relaxed Fruitsuper design store, offers pours, flights, and bottles of their current (and some library) Rhone-inspired low-intervention wines. Stop in to try the breezy and refined Washington malbec, the jammy and zesty GSM (grenache, syrah, and mourvedre), and the rapidly expanding “pétproject” collection of single varietal pet-nat (naturally carbonated) wines.

Le Caviste

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Even among Seattle’s crowded wine scene, Le Caviste sets itself apart. David Butler’s Denny Triangle wine bistro and retail corner has a cozy, classic, and bustling ambiance. More importantly, Le Caviste offers generously affordable wines by the glass and bottle that are an education in precise, expressive products from low-intervention farmer-producers in pioneering French wine regions like Beaujolais, the Loire, and Languedoc-Roussillon. Don’t forget about the finely-tuned snacks: the delicate walnut and tarragon-laced plate of smoked duck breast coaxes a light and floral glass of Fleurie to a plummy, robust peak.

L'Oursin

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Even before walking into L’Oursin, the wall of wine visible from the sidewalk makes it clear that wine (natural, foremost) is a priority. This cozy brasserie serves precise, seafood-focused French cuisine (but also fried sweetbreads with an espelette pepper barbecue sauce) that accentuates wine director Kathryn Olson’s exciting wine list with rare grape varietals, tiny sub-appellations, and dessert wines served by a knowledgeable and enthusiastic staff. The majority of bottles on the menu go for $30-$60, so savoring the selections at L’Oursin won’t break the bank.

Brady Ishiwata Williams’ celebrated White Center restaurant opened in September 2021 and has been offering fine dining through a personal and seasonal lens since day one. It shouldn’t be a surprise when a restaurant’s beverage program is just as beautiful as the food, but the wines that Andy Comer and his team are pouring are just that — and earned the restaurant’s wine program a nomination for a 2022 James Beard Award. The deep knowledge and welcoming atmosphere cultivated by the staff at Tomo make this a worthwhile destination for gorgeous food alongside a lip-smacking wine education.

Blotto is the Seattle spot for natural wine skeptics — what better an introduction to natural wine than alongside expressive, fine-tuned pizza. Blotto’s charred and chewy naturally-leavened pies (recent offerings included a sausage and piparra meat pie and charred leek and lemon ricotta vegetarian option) are some of the best in the city, and they beg for a beverage accompaniment. The rotating glass of the day could be from California or New York just as easily as Campania or McLaren Vale, so grab a glass or a well-priced bottle, sit back into Blotto’s vivacious space, and enjoy.

Light Sleeper

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Light Sleeper swings for the fences, and both the food and wine at this Chophouse Row restaurant are memorable and satisfying. The team of Seattle industry vets deftly navigates 20-plus daily glass offerings, which makes it that much more exciting when the chamomile and black tea notes of a round, waxy maceration Trebbiano / Malvasia from a celebrated Tuscan producer really come through. Stop by next-door bottle shop Wide Eyed Wines afterwards to peruse the entire Light Sleeper selection and more.

Off Alley

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This 14-seat Columbia City restaurant in a renovated alley is about as personal as restaurants get. Helmed by beverage and front-of-house director Meghna Prakash and chef Evan Leichtling, Off Alley does seasonal Pacific Northwest bistro food bolstered by an eclectic natural wine list featuring small-scale producers, inspired by Meghna and Evan’s extensive time working in France and Spain. Off Alley is a rare spot that concocts a synergy between wine and food, where menu decisions are in the service of educating guests and celebrating producers.

Persephone

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La Medusa’s next-door market, bottle shop, and wine and amaro bar, Persephone features a tightly curated selection of wine, split between Sicilian producers and everywhere else in the world (Catalonia to Chateauneuf-du-Pape), that is complemented by an inspiring list of amaro, a smattering of bites, and casual piles of taralli (fennel-laced Puglian crackers) to snack on. Persephone’s breezy attitude makes it a crowd-pleasing spot for aperitivo, whether that’s a 3 p.m. glass of Occhipinti frappato or a bracing pre-dinner glug of Luxardo Fernet.

Crunchy Red Fruit

Tucked between warehouses in South Park’s Cloverdale Business Park, Crunchy Red Fruit is equal parts bottleshop, wine club, and tasting destination. The knowledgeable team led by Canlis alum Jackson Rohrbaugh guides inquiring guests through all things wine, whether the subject matter is affordable yet memorable weeknight drinking or the micro-climates of Crozes-Hermitage. Keep an eye out for periodic warehouse sales for budget picks and rare gems.

fatcork

Both importer and wine club, Fatcork in Lower Queen Anne supplies Seattle with a delectable portfolio of grower Champagne — sparkling wine from the Champagne appellation that is grown and produced by the same individual or team. Founded by Bryan and Abby Maletis in 2010, Fatcork champions site-specific, low-intervention bubbles that will convert any Champagne skeptic. For your next special occasion, skip on the Dom Perignon and get three game-changing cuvees from Fatcork for the same price instead.

Imperfetta

Just off the Burke-Gilman trail in Fremont, owner Celia Barber’s wine selection comprises personal favorites from across the globe, and this intimacy makes Imperfetta a top destination for folks looking to step into the confusing and exciting world of small-scale, sustainable winemaking. The shop regularly hosts pop-ups and wine education events as well.

Grape Juice Wine Shop

A newcomer to the scene, Grape Juice is a bottle shop and wine club nestled in the back of Ballard’s Anchored Ship Coffee Bar. Sheila Mulvihill, wine lover and owner of Anchored Ship, began selling bottles at the end of 2021 and has a concise, well-priced selection of wine to peruse while waiting for a coffee order at the front of the cafe. The pet-nat (naturally sparkling) offerings are particularly joyous, and Grape Juice is a great place to start or continue exploring these bottle-fermented wines.

Left Bank

Wine bar and bottle shop Left Bank opened several years ago on the corner of 14th and Cloverdale in South Park but feels like it has quietly occupied its nook for much longer. With an Old World-skewing selection, Left Bank is equally a spot to nerd out over uncommon grapes (Aramon, anyone?) or just settle into the cushioned seating area and sip one of the daily glass pours. Fans of now-shuttered sister shop Glinda in Capitol Hill will love a field trip to Left Bank —settle in and hand the wine reins over to owner Campbell Scarborough or any of the kind, knowledgeable staff.

Burien Press

Burien Press is as laidback as it gets, while also obsessively curating a selection of juicy natural wine since 2009. An all-day cafe serving sweet and savory pastries, salads and sandwiches across the street from Burien’s Town Square Park, Burien Press is South Seattle’s spot for an extensive and dynamic wine selection with a great rotating selection of Washington natural wines. Check out the soon-to-be natural wine bar Fable in Beacon Hill from the team behind Burien Press, opening in Petite Soif’s vacated space.

Union Coffee and Wine

Geetu Vailoor’s cafe and bottle shop recently celebrated its second birthday, the perfect reason to stop in and choose a bottle from the impeccably stocked walls of wine (and coffee beans, vermouth, and more). Union serves as a Central District community space as well, hosting pop-ups with other local food artisans. Keep an eye out for expansion of by–the-glass offerings and other specials in the coming months.

Molly's Bottle Shop

Founded in 2019 by Molly Ringe, Molly’s packs every square inch of this 200-square-foot Sunset Hill wine shop with thoughtful, naturally-produced bottles from far-flung regions like Mexico’s Valle de Guadalupe, France’s Dordogne, and Washington’s own San Juan Island. Wines are poured by the glass in the shop (and nextdoor at Baker’s, too), and staff are thrilled to guide visitors based on region, varietal, or stylistic preferences. Molly’s recently opened another (slightly larger) space in West Seattle, so wine lovers to the south don’t need to trek too far for great natural wine.

Halfseas Wine + Bottle Shop

Ballard’s wine oasis lies under a verdant wisteria arbor through the gates just south of Brimmer & Heeltap. The rows of gem-like bottles, emphasizing niche producers both domestic and international, are a great choice for all occasions. Jen Doak and the staff bring warmth, enthusiasm, and deep knowledge to the natural wine selection process — buying a bottle or two (or six) here is just as fun as actually tasting the wine. Halfseas also offers tiered monthly wine and cheese club subscriptions, and regularly hosts regionally focused evening tastings.

Foundry Vineyards

 Foundry’s winemaker Jay Anderson farms wine from estate Stonemaker vineyard in Walla Walla and other sustainable vineyards throughout Washington. The Pioneer Square tasting room, led by Natalie Lyons-Cohen inside the relaxed Fruitsuper design store, offers pours, flights, and bottles of their current (and some library) Rhone-inspired low-intervention wines. Stop in to try the breezy and refined Washington malbec, the jammy and zesty GSM (grenache, syrah, and mourvedre), and the rapidly expanding “pétproject” collection of single varietal pet-nat (naturally carbonated) wines.

Le Caviste

Even among Seattle’s crowded wine scene, Le Caviste sets itself apart. David Butler’s Denny Triangle wine bistro and retail corner has a cozy, classic, and bustling ambiance. More importantly, Le Caviste offers generously affordable wines by the glass and bottle that are an education in precise, expressive products from low-intervention farmer-producers in pioneering French wine regions like Beaujolais, the Loire, and Languedoc-Roussillon. Don’t forget about the finely-tuned snacks: the delicate walnut and tarragon-laced plate of smoked duck breast coaxes a light and floral glass of Fleurie to a plummy, robust peak.

L'Oursin

Even before walking into L’Oursin, the wall of wine visible from the sidewalk makes it clear that wine (natural, foremost) is a priority. This cozy brasserie serves precise, seafood-focused French cuisine (but also fried sweetbreads with an espelette pepper barbecue sauce) that accentuates wine director Kathryn Olson’s exciting wine list with rare grape varietals, tiny sub-appellations, and dessert wines served by a knowledgeable and enthusiastic staff. The majority of bottles on the menu go for $30-$60, so savoring the selections at L’Oursin won’t break the bank.

TOMO

Brady Ishiwata Williams’ celebrated White Center restaurant opened in September 2021 and has been offering fine dining through a personal and seasonal lens since day one. It shouldn’t be a surprise when a restaurant’s beverage program is just as beautiful as the food, but the wines that Andy Comer and his team are pouring are just that — and earned the restaurant’s wine program a nomination for a 2022 James Beard Award. The deep knowledge and welcoming atmosphere cultivated by the staff at Tomo make this a worthwhile destination for gorgeous food alongside a lip-smacking wine education.

Blotto

Blotto is the Seattle spot for natural wine skeptics — what better an introduction to natural wine than alongside expressive, fine-tuned pizza. Blotto’s charred and chewy naturally-leavened pies (recent offerings included a sausage and piparra meat pie and charred leek and lemon ricotta vegetarian option) are some of the best in the city, and they beg for a beverage accompaniment. The rotating glass of the day could be from California or New York just as easily as Campania or McLaren Vale, so grab a glass or a well-priced bottle, sit back into Blotto’s vivacious space, and enjoy.

Light Sleeper

Light Sleeper swings for the fences, and both the food and wine at this Chophouse Row restaurant are memorable and satisfying. The team of Seattle industry vets deftly navigates 20-plus daily glass offerings, which makes it that much more exciting when the chamomile and black tea notes of a round, waxy maceration Trebbiano / Malvasia from a celebrated Tuscan producer really come through. Stop by next-door bottle shop Wide Eyed Wines afterwards to peruse the entire Light Sleeper selection and more.

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Off Alley

This 14-seat Columbia City restaurant in a renovated alley is about as personal as restaurants get. Helmed by beverage and front-of-house director Meghna Prakash and chef Evan Leichtling, Off Alley does seasonal Pacific Northwest bistro food bolstered by an eclectic natural wine list featuring small-scale producers, inspired by Meghna and Evan’s extensive time working in France and Spain. Off Alley is a rare spot that concocts a synergy between wine and food, where menu decisions are in the service of educating guests and celebrating producers.

Persephone

La Medusa’s next-door market, bottle shop, and wine and amaro bar, Persephone features a tightly curated selection of wine, split between Sicilian producers and everywhere else in the world (Catalonia to Chateauneuf-du-Pape), that is complemented by an inspiring list of amaro, a smattering of bites, and casual piles of taralli (fennel-laced Puglian crackers) to snack on. Persephone’s breezy attitude makes it a crowd-pleasing spot for aperitivo, whether that’s a 3 p.m. glass of Occhipinti frappato or a bracing pre-dinner glug of Luxardo Fernet.

Related Maps