Location: South-central Washington
Designated: 2020
Total Size: 815 acres
Acres Under Vine:
110 acres (44 hectares)
Top Varieties:
Cabernet Sauvignon
Soils:  Loess, windblown silt and sand, ice age flood sediment 
Average Annual Precipitation: 5 inches

Two Things to Know:

  • Candy Mountain is currently the smallest appellation in Washington.
  •  Its proximity to Red Mountain give it similarities to that esteemed appellation. 

Located in south-central Washington, Candy Mountain is wholly contained within the Yakima Valley appellation, which itself is part of the larger Columbia Valley. 

 Candy Mountain lies four miles southeast of Red Mountain and generally has a similar, warm climate to that appellation. Like Red Mountain, it also has higher winds relative to the surrounding area. At 815 total acres, Candy Mountain is Washington’s smallest viticultural region. It’s also one of our youngest. 

Bright green leaves on grape vines with purple grape clusters hanging below. More rows of vines are visible beyond and the sky above is blue with wisps of white clouds.
Candy Mountain AVA, courtesy Seth Kitzke.

Established in 2020, Candy Mountain’s vineyards are located on the southwestern side of the mountain, which has a slope of 2 to 20 degrees. Elevations in the appellation range from 640 to 1,360 feet above sea level, with the upper reaches above the Missoula Floods, a cataclysmic series of floods that define Columbia Valley soils. Candy Mountain is also part of the Yakima Fold Belt, which are uplifts in the land that comprises many of eastern Washington’s viticultural areas. 

Map of Washington with the Candy Mountain AVA in red, surrounded by the rest of the AVAs in muted greens and oranges.

 The soils of Candy Mountain are composed of loess – windblown silt and sand – on top of ice age flood sediment. Soils are generally thin with decreased water holding capacity, allowing growers to stress vines as they see fit during the growing season. This also lets roots come into contact more easily with the basalt bedrock, which has a different suite of minerals than the topsoil. 

There is currently one winery located within the appellation. 

Sunset in orange and gold over a rounded tall hill, with green grape leaves in the foreground.
Candy Mountain AVA, courtesy Seth Kitzke.

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