Born out of a chance meeting at the Sun Valley Wine Auction's trade tasting that developed into a deep friendship, and a shared passion for outstanding wine, rock and roll, and fun, Sleight of Hand Cellars is the brainchild (love child) of Trey Busch and Jerry Solomon. Following that initial meeting in 2002, Trey, Jerry, and the winery's third partner, Sandy Solomon, started doing annual wine dinners in Sun Valley while Trey worked as the winemaker at another local winery (a job he had taken after training under Eric Dunham of Dunham Cellars beginning in 2000). Those dinners continued for four years, until in 2006 Trey finally convinced Sandy and Jerry to come over to Walla Walla for a visit.
That visit proved to be life-changing for the three partners. In less than 24 hours after their arrival in Walla Walla, the Solomons had not only fallen in love with Walla Walla and its unique charm, but a deal had been struck to start the winery. In June of 2007 the winery officially opened its doors with a small storefront tasting room in Downtown Walla Walla, while renting space at another winery for production purposes. But great press, and outstanding scores from critics, soon changed those minimalist beginnings.
Sleight of Hand Cellars has two basic goals in its vision statement, to make world class wines and to have fun while doing it—a visit to the winery is all the proof anyone needs to confirm that the winery, and its partners, are succeeding on both fronts. The winery has been open for less than ten years, but in that time Sleight of Hand Cellars has been named one of "The Next Generation" of up and coming wineries in Washington State, as well as one of "The Next Cult Wineries" by Seattle Magazine. We have had numerous wines make the top 100 of Wine and Spirits Magazine, as well as Seattle Met Magazine.
These and other accolades, including an introduction to the winery article in Wine Spectator magazine following our spectacular 2008 vintage, forced our hand, and in 2011 the winery moved to its own property where we continue to focus on the goal of making wines that compete with the best in the world, from a combination of Estate vineyards as well as purchasing fruit from some of the top vineyard sites in Washington State. In 2011, the winery built a tasting room and production facility on the newly acquired property in southern Walla Walla, and in 2014 we broke ground on a second barrel room to handle not only our increasing production levels, but also to allow us more space for more "toys" in keeping with our philosophy that every year offers an opportunity to make even better wines.
In addition to Sleight of Hand Cellars' line-up, in 2009 we launched our value line under the Renegade Wine Company label. Producing a Cabernet Sauvignon-based red blend, a Chardonnay, and a Rose' each year, along with periodic limited-production single-varietal wines, the Renegade Wine Company brand is focused on providing unsurpassed quality in the value wine arena.
Trey, Jerry, and Sandy