At Lake Chelan’s Succession Wines Your Tasting Experience Means Everything

This article originally appeared in the April, 2022 issue of Bellingham Alive Magazine

At Succession Wines, located on the north shore of picturesque Lake Chelan, husband-and-wife owners Brock and Erica Lindsay make it a priority to provide their guests with a first-class wine tasting experience.

“We take a three-tiered approach,” notes Brock; “Excellent wines, excellent venue, and excellent customer service.”

“But it all starts with an exceptional product,” he says, “and we’re fortunate that we’re able to source from some of the best vineyards in the state as well as growing what we think is some of the best fruit in the state.”

Erica & Brock Lindsay of Succession

Erica is a 2005 graduate of Western Washington University while Brock graduated from Montana State. The couple met in Seattle and initially lived near the Eastern Washington town of Brewster, where they incorporated Succession Wines in 2015. A year later, they broke ground on their Lake Chelan tasting room just outside the community of Manson and moved there permanently with their two daughters in 2019.

One step onto the winery grounds and visitors quickly realize they’re in for something special.

“We equate a visit to the winery as being a guest in our home,” adds Erica, “and we have a team that thinks that way as well. They’re excited to be there and they’re excited to meet our guests.”

“Our tasting room is nestled in the middle of our estate vineyard overlooking Lake Chelan,” says Brock. “It’s an indoor/outdoor experience with sweeping views of the lake and the mountains.”

“We’re also a ‘working winery,’” he adds, meaning that the crushing, fermentation, and storage and barrel-aging of the wines all takes place at the same facility. The proximity of the production process to the tasting room encourages visitors to view and ask questions about the wines the Lindsays and their winemaking staff are working on.

Brock notes that he uses a cooler fermentation method that often results in “wines that are compared to French-style wines that are nuanced and balanced and somewhat ‘feminine’ in approach. We’re not trying to overpower with tannins.”

“In the simplest terms, it’s about allowing the fruit to show through rather than convoluting it with too strong of an (oak) barrel program,” adds Erica.

The end result is a stunning selection of delicious choices for wine enthusiasts.

Malbec, Merlot, Cabernet Franc and Cabernet Sauvignon are on the current list of red wines. “And we really have a lot of fun working with Syrah,” says Brock. “We grow it on the estate and make our rosé out of it” (which is so popular, it typically sells out in June after its early spring release).

The Lindsays are also excited about their upcoming whites, especially Erica, a confirmed white wine fanatic. They include an Antoine Creek Vineyard Viognier, Sauvignon Blanc, Chardonnay, and a blend under the “Our Evolution” label which is a perennial customer favorite. Brock notes that these are all dry white wines that feature beautiful aromatics without the sugar.

The Lindsays also make it a point to provide their visitors with an unpretentious wine tasting experience that they say is equal parts educational and fun. That includes live music every Sunday at Succession from May to October, and every Saturday at their sister winery, Alta Cellars, just five minutes up the road in downtown Manson.

“Our guests often walk up as strangers and leave as friends,” says Erica, and with exceptional wines served in an unbeatable location by some of the nicest people in the industry, it’s easy to see why.

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