In 1904, John Bradshaw began construction on his private residence at 405 West First Street in Palisade. During the next one hundred years, the home would be enjoyed and loved by three separate families. This elegant brick Victorian-style structure witnessed a considerable amount of history, and stands as a testament to the strength and tenacity of the town and its people.
Ron and Kristin West purchased the home in 2004 - a full century after its completion - with a dream to turn the property into a vineyard and winery. Having been involved for several decades in the scientific side of winemaking, Ron wanted to try his hand at crafting the types of wines he personally enjoyed. After convincing Kristin that viticulture was “elegant farming,” the Wests began the work of transforming the estate into what is now a world-class establishment.
Varaison is truly a family venture. Using their skills and extensive specialized training, the family seeks to craft a unique and educational experience. Their approach to winemaking derives its inspiration from the Old World. The exceptional wine style, tasting presentation, and enchanting setting transforms the Varaison wine experience from something simply enjoyed to an event to be remembered.
In 2010, Varaison was invited to the Paris Wines and Spirits Expo, an internationally prestigious tasting event. At the residence of the U.S. Ambassador to France in Paris, Varaison’s wines were entered into a blind tasting competition where they had the opportunity to be compared with historically distinguished French and American wines. Both of the varietals entered were spectacularly well-received, and Varaison secured a place on the international stage with its distinctive style and craftsmanship.
Today, Varaison continues the tradition of producing wines of a particular style, and enjoys introducing new flavors, sensations, and knowledge to its guests. Always looking to enhance the experience, the property now includes a heritage rose garden, an event pavilion, and a fire pit, hearth and patio area where patrons enjoy wood-fired pizza and wine on starlit summer Friday nights. Varaison’s newest venture is 13˚ Brix, a cider bar and bistro in downtown Palisade, scheduled to open in the early summer of 2016. There you can explore a selection of hand-crafted hard ciders in a vintage-inspired setting that is both casual and fun.
We invite you to visit Varaison for an unforgettable wine experience that will extend far beyond the lip of the glass.