Boyd and Karen Buckingham’s interest in the wine industry began when their children attended school in Walla Walla over a decade ago. Convinced by a noted winemaker that they too could make wine, they gathered five other couples with similar passions and made a barrel of wine together in their barn in Sammamish. Winegrape grower Kent Waliser of Sagemoor Vineyards agreed to sell them some quality grapes and one barrel soon grew to 22! They consulted with Cheryl Barber Jones along the way and made award-winning wines under the group’s label, Rock Meadow Cellars.
After some years, the Buckinghams ventured out and started their own winery, Sol Stone. They sought a name that symbolized the circle of life — from the warming sun to the rocky soils that nurture Washington grape vines and also demonstrate the heartiness found in nature and man to overcome adverse conditions.
Combining their passions for wine and philanthropy, they use a portion of profits to support Guide Dogs for the Blind and The WAVE Foundation, which benefits domestic violence organizations. Their grapes are sourced from premium vineyards throughout the state; Grenache, Cabernet Sauvignon, Malbec, Tempranillo, Viognier, Sauvignon Blanc and Chardonnay plus a premier Rhone blend, “Stoners Red.”
You can find Sol Stone wines at their tasting room in Woodinville, where you may be met by two warm and friendly retired guide dogs, Radley and Francisco.
Sol Stone tasting room: 19151 144th Ave NE, Unit G, Woodinville, open Fri 3-8, Sat-Sun noon to 6PM, phone (425) 417-8483.
Sol Stone 2013 Upland Vineyards Tempranillo, $28
Nose: Seductive aromas of dark fruit, grilled plum and tobacco notes.
Taste: This rich and robust blend of Tempranillo (94%) and Cabernet Franc (4%) is built with velvety smooth tannins that deliver steeped black fruit and red plum compote inlaid with powerful notes of iron, loam, smoke and sage that sustain through the long focused finish.
Editor’s Choice – Outstanding
Production: 120 cases