Woodward Canyon Winery sets table with new restaurant

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LOWDEN -- First a winery. Then a market. Now a restaurant.

Woodward Canyon Winery has added yet another dimension to its Lowden operation with the quiet opening in late May of the Reserve House restaurant.

The restaurant is open seasonally, Friday through Sunday, and features dishes from chef Heidi Varney from Walla Walla Community College's Wine Country Culinary Program.

The small plates highlight the homegrown Lazy S Arrow produce raised at the base of the Woodward Canyon Estate Vineyard.

Reserve House offers interior seating at communal tables or individual tables on the covered porches with views of the garden and neighboring vineyard.

Operators have been growing produce there for five years. The produce has been used for events at the winery and sold to local restaurants.

That will continue to be the case.

The Lazy S Arrow produce will also be available at the new Lazy S Arrow Market that recently opened at the winery, 11920 W. Highway 12.

The market also features fruits and vegetables from other growers, specialty foods and items for wine country picnics.

The restaurant and market represent a return of sorts to Woodward Canyon founder Rick Small's agricultural roots.

Small grew up on a ranch in Woodward Canyon, where his family grew grains and vegetables, and raised beef and hogs.

He then became one of the founding grower/winemakers in the Walla Walla Valley, producing highly-rated wines that helped put the area on national and international wine lovers' maps.

Small's wife and Woodward Canyon General Manager Darcey Fugman-Small said in an announcement the many elements work together to create a truly local experience.

"Our wine is made to accompany food and we are growing this incredible produce, so the decision to share those both onsite seemed to be a natural progression, as did the decision to procure much of our ingredients locally," she said.

"It really puts an exclamation point on the sense of place that makes the Walla Walla Valley so special."

A recent menu included Locati Farms asparagus, Upper Dry Creek Ranch's beef and lamb and a special sausage made by Blue Valley Meats using Woodward Canyon's Walla Walla Valley cabernet sauvignon.

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