Open to the Public
Mon-Fri 1-7, Sat 12-7, Sun 12-5
Eleven Winery is a small winery dedicated to producing great wine, and to make sure you have a great time drinking it--because having fun is what it's really all about! Our production focuses on somewhat offbeat varieties, including Malbec, Syrah, Mourvedre, Petit Verdot, Pinot Grigio, Roussanne, Viognier, and a few others. We make a dry rosé, as well as both white and red dessert wines.
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Matt had met the winemaker (Dane Stark) at Page Mill Winery, a small winery located near where he was living in Menlo Park, California. It was September, and his offer to help with harvest was met with an obvious "of course!" Within a few days he found himself standing atop the crush stand in the cool morning air, dumping 30-pound boxes of grapes into the crusher. Then and there, he knew that his destiny was sealed. He started going to the winery in the morning before work, and after a few days Dane suggested that he make a barrel of wine of his own, "and do it now,” he said, “because if you wait even a few weeks, you'll have to wait until next year." Matt found some grapes for sale and made a barrel of chardonnay that year, and continued helping out at the winery after harvest ended. Over the next three years, Dane, generous to a fault with his time, space, and equipment, taught Matt how to make great wine, and Matt spent as much time as possible working in the cellar.
After three years, Matt's ambitions outgrew the limited extra space at Page Mill. He and Sarah searched for a place to put down roots in California, but ultimately decided to return to the Pacific Northwest, where they both grew up. At the time the wine scene in Washington was just getting going, with a mere 250 wineries in the entire state. Matt and Sarah settled on Bainbridge Island for its community and natural beauty more than as a sensible place to start a winery (because it wasn't). They bought a fixer-upper house, fixed it up, refinanced it, and used the extra money to convert the large garage into a tiny winery. The first grapes were crushed in 2003, and the first whites were released in 2004. In 2011, the winery was relocated to larger space in a commercial building just a short distance from the original location, still on Bainbridge Island.