Organic, a buzzword. A lifestyle and a preference for people across the board. In 2002 the USDA released a specific guideline of what makes something organic, or not. But for the founder and owner of Badger Mountain Vineyard in Kennewick, Bill Powers, the concern about how the chemicals used on produce could affect our health and environment, began before then.
How It Began and the Upkeep
In 1982 Mr. Powers began his 80acre vineyard with his son, but began the transition to an organic winery in 1988 after claiming he “just found a better way” to farm. Two years later, they were the first certified organic wine grape vineyard in the state. Bill would later go on to win various awards such as Wine Grape Grower of the Year, a Lifetime Achievement Award and “Legend of Washington Wine.”
Growing organic wine grapes requires a lot more effort and work than normal grapes. For starters’ one has to look that they are using a grape variety that works well in the location they will be planting, the grape needs to be resilient and strong against diseases. On top of that the growers need to constantly check the fields to stop any pests or predators in their tracks as it can get overrun quickly and damage the crop. When a problem does pop up though, the organic option is to use predatory insects, hoe plowing, and crop thinning- to just name a few.
But this hasn’t stopped Badger Mountain Vineyards from anything, not even from a devastating freeze back in 2007, proving once again that this is what they were made to do. Over the years, they have managed to become a well-respected, highly rated, and beloved winery.
Want a Taste?
Their tasting room is the place to go if you are interested in trying the over twenty different red and whites from their Badger Mountain and Powers (non-organic) label. Open seven days a week, this beautifully situated location, gives the visitor many chances to stop by and enjoy their sulfite free selection.
They don’t stop there, though. Throughout the year they offer several different events ranging from a “wine-a-ritas & Taco Tuesday,” “Macrame and Malbecs,” to a Grape Stomping day! While you probably won’t be taking your kids with you to any of those, this is a great spot to head to with friends, family or even co-workers. If you take a visit and fall in love with the gorgeous surrounding of nature, make sure you ge tin contact with the manager to book your next event.
Photos Courtesy of Badger Mountain. Make sure to head over to their website for more information, scheduling and upcoming events.