Spanish for Bee, our name is pronounced “ah-BAY-ha”. We chose this name for its simple beauty and its reminder of times past when farming implied a respect for the environment and a close connection to the earth. It is our belief that each day, we can make a difference in the quality of our care for the land, and no matter how small, any difference we make is worthwhile. We create our wines under this same philosophy…
The focus of our production is Cabernet Sauvignon, as we believe this grape will increasingly be the icon varietal of Washington State. We also produce small amounts of Merlot, Chardonnay, and estate grown Viognier and Syrah. All five varietals are limited in availability.
Our wines are made from a combination of estate grapes and carefully selected vineyards whose growers share our passion for quality and the land. Traditional methods combined with innovative techniques, and a meticuous commitment to detail, define the Abeja winemaking philosophy. From the site chosen to plant the vines, and the care given them throughout the year, to harvest, and through the numerous stages of the winemaking process, there are many choices to make and each have a lasting and cumulative effect on quality.
Our small team is passionately dedicated to quality. This begins in the vineyard, and continues through every part of the process that leads to our final product. Our state-of-the-art winery is designed to handle even the smallest quantities of fruit, so that farming for flavor always takes precedence over logistics.
Our wines are made to accompany the meal. This means a balanced wine with a solid framework of tannin and acidity that is filled with pure, lush fruit richness in the midpalate, elegant integrated oak, a moderate alcohol level and a generous finish. We accomplish this through meticulous viticultural management, gentle handling of the fruit and the wine, customized practices for every lot no matter how small, and carefully selected French oak.
We create our wines and determine their prices with the intent that each will far surpass your expectations. Whether the price is $25 or $85, you can count on our wines to over-deliver.
Our Vineyard Sources
Our wines are produced from a combination of estate fruit and fruit grown by long-term contract in other growing areas of Washington State.
Heather Hill – Certified LIVE and Salmon Safe since 2008
Heather Hill is located at the south end of the Walla Walla Valley Appellation, where we believe the soil, aspect, and growing conditions will prove to be ideal for producing fruit of the highest quality. Because of its varied topography, it is, in effect, like having three unique vineyard sites that provide for diverse characteristics in chemistry, ripening, and flavor profiles. It takes a number of years for young vineyards to develop to their full potential, and at this point, Heather Hill is exceeding our expectations for its evenness, expression of fruit, increasing complexity, and level of quality. We credit much of this to the sustainable farming practices that we began in 2002. The spring of 2011 saw the first release Cabernet Sauvignon with the special Heather Hill vineyard designation.
Mill Creek Vineyard – Certified LIVE and Salmon Safe since 2008
This vineyard is located on the winery property in one of the air drainages of the east side of the Walla Walla Valley. It sits at the base of the Blue Mountains at an elevation fo 1300 feet and has temperature fluctuations of 40+ degrees between day and night. This proximity to the Blue Mountains, makes it a much cooler site than those on the south side of the Valley, providing a site that is quite different from Heather Hill and well suited for other varietals other than Cabernet Sauvignon. Syrah and Viognier were planted in 2000. Merlot and Chardonnay were planted in 2006.
Abeja is an original member of Vinea, The Winegrower’s Sustainable Trust.
Through Vinea, our vineyards are certified LIVE and Salmon Safe. The LIVE and Salmon Safe Certification defines sustainable agriculture as: “A third party-certified system of farming practices that encourages responsible stewardship of soil health, fertility, and stability; supports and builds plant, animal, and soil diversity;utilizes preventive plant protection; amd minimizes toxic inputs to decrease negative impacts on the land and the community for the health of future generations. An increase in fruit quality is an additional and wonderful consequence.”
Columbia Valley Vineyards
We also work, on a long-term basis, with a handful of growers in the Columbia Valley who share our passion for quality, innovation, and the land. The diversity of varied growing areas is valuable to us as are these long-term relationships, which allow us to work closely with the grower to accomplish our goals in the vineyard. These include Sagemoor’s Bacchus, Dionysus, and Weinbau; Celilo Vineyard; and Conner Lee Vineyard.