Many new business owners would toss in the towel after two devastating blows to their enterprise. However, that’s not the case for Westport residents Chris and Maria Tiffany, owners/operators of Cranberry Road Winery and Bog Water Brewing Co. in rural Westport.
After being closed since late November of last year, construction recently was completed on a new 7,000 square-foot building on their property on the corner of SR105 and S. Forrest Street at the Grayland ‘T’. After furnishing the new tasting room and restaurant, Cranberry Road Winery re-opened for business July 29.
Chris handles production and upkeep, with Maria in charge of the tasting room/restaurant operation, along with what Chris has called “the biggest job,” caring for the couple’s three children; Mia, 7, Emma, 5, and Nick, who is 1.
The road to this summer’s re-opening has been a rocky one. The Tiffanys purchased the 10-acre site with a 4,200 square-foot steel building in 2011. They developed the majority of the interior into a wine and beer producing operation and included a small tasting room.
However, shortly before they opened for business in late October, 2012, someone broke into the building and drove a forklift into their storage tanks, spilling 4,000 gallons of wine.
Despite the major loss in equipment and product, the couple vowed to move forward. They have built their clientele by word-of-mouth, both at the winery and by marketing in grocery and wine stores in both Washington and Idaho.
In mid-2013, Chris and Aberdeen brewmaster Jon Bennett developed several craft beers, launching the Bog Water Brewing Co. half of the operation.
Wood-fired pizza soon followed, along with very popular live music afternoons outside on patio.
The business was growing steadily until Nov. 24 of last year, when everything the Tiffanys had developed was destroyed by fire. The blaze, first noticed at approximately 6 p.m. when the structure was already fully engulfed in flames, completely gutted the building. Eventually the cause was determined to most likely be electrical in origin.
The Tiffanys suffered an estimated $2 million loss this time around, but fortunately, the property and contents were insured.
Again, the couple decided to keep fighting for their dream. They developed plans for an even bigger and better operation, and dove into rebuilding their business from the ground up.
Their recently completed new steel building has exterior finishes that give the appearance of a stick-built structure. It includes a combined tasting room and restaurant that seats 82. Filled with rustic sawn wood furnishings, every seat in the house offers a nice view through wrap-around picture windows that overlook covered patio areas on all four sides of the structure.
By late September, a ballroom with seating for up to 150 people in the north end of the building will also be in service. According to Chris, the winery already has several bookings for that facility.
The couple plans to break ground this fall for their 5,000 sq. ft. wine and beer production and warehouse building on the northern end of the property.
The Tiffanys are counting on this third effort to be the charm that propels them to even greater success.
Wining and dining
With cranberry and grape harvests coming soon, Chris says that Cranberry Road signature wines are expected to be available again by the winter holidays. In the meantime, patrons can enjoy a variety of Merlots, Rieslings, Chardonnays and Cabernet Sauvignons.
With house beers currently produced at a contract brewery, micro-brew enthusiasts can continue to enjoy Bog Water Brewing Co. browns, blondes, stouts, gingers, hefeweisens and IPAs, along with several guest taps.
Along with more than a dozen varieties of very popular wood-fired pizza, Cranberry Road Winery’s new restaurant features smoked salmon, glazed Brussels sprouts and oyster shooter appetizers. Dinner selections include steaks, chicken and a different fresh seafood catch of the day, purchased each morning off the docks in Westport.
Have a sweet tooth? Top off your meal with a Dutch Boy – fresh fruit and honey on a German pancake.
Days and hours
Cranberry Road Winery & Bog Water Brewing Co. is open Monday through Thursday from 11 a.m. to 9 p.m. and Friday, Saturday and Sunday from 8 a.m. to 9 p.m.
To make reservations for large groups or to order pizzas to go, call 268-7082.