Karma Vineyards & Cave
French monks were the first to bottle a sparkling form of wine called Champagne, named after the Champagne region of France. The method of making “mousse” (another name for bubbles) in a bottle was invented by the efforts of Frère Jean Oudart (1654 – 1742) and Dom Pierre Pérignon (1639 – 1715), Benedictine monks and cellarmasters at the respective abbeys of Saint-Pierre aux Monts de Châlons and Saint-Pierre d’Hautvillers.
The region of Champagne has a colder and shorter growing season. Champagne grapes had to be picked late in the year, with less time available for fermentation. During fermentation yeasts are used to convert the sugars of the grape juice into alcohol and cold winter temperatures stopped the process. The monks developed a method of making sparkling wine by using a second fermentation process that took place in the bottle during the following spring. The second fermentation created carbon-dioxide bubbles that are the sparkle of Champagne.
Karma Vineyards is proud to be one of a handful of Methode Champenoise producers in Washington State. With an abundance of Pinot Noir and Chardonnay growing on site, we look forward to many, many more years of sparkling made in the true french tradition. Released every Memorial Day weekend, our vintages usually are available for a very limited time, so don’t hesitate to get on our list..and enjoy some bubbly anytime you like!
Craig Mitrakul began working in the wine industry after receiving his Master’s Degree in Food Science with an emphasis in Enology from Cornell University and his Bachelor’s Degree in Food Science from Rutgers University. Craig’s career began back east in Lodi, New York at Lamoureaux Landing Wine Cellars. He and his wife, Danielle, made the move out west when Craig took on the role of Assistant Winemaker at Ponzi Vineyards in Beaverton, Oregon. Craig then went to work at the highly acclaimed Three Rivers Winery in Walla Walla, Washington as Assistant Winemaker and joined Ryan Patrick Vineyards, as Head Winemaker, in 2004. Craig made the move to Karma Vineyards in 2011. Craig is one of Washington State’s most desirable winemakers, producing award-winning wines while maximizing efficiency within the winery.