Early this year I wrote a New Year’s Resolution to visit some of the newer Kentucky’s wineries, those that have opened in recent years. This Saturday we added one to that list. 12 Mile Creek Winery opened in Campbell County and we talked about going right away, but time passed and they just celebrated their second anniversary and this was our first visit. It won’t be our last. We had a very nice visit!
Tami and Kevin Stewart have created a friendly atmosphere with a variety of wines to please any visitors. The tasting room is a lovely room with a comfortable feel. They have wine, food, and music most weekends. We enjoyed all of those Saturday night. I got to try a new wine for me, a dry white made with the Edelweiss grape. The floral aromas are followed by fruity flavors and combine to make an interesting wine. My husband had Cabernet Sauvignon. Our food was excellent, a Buffalo Chicken Naan Bread and a Naan Reuben. The music was Jeff Blackburn and Steve Maynard, who we always enjoy!
It was a fun evening! We had a nice visit!
We became fans of a local music duo a couple of years ago after hearing them at Brianza. We saw them several times and enjoyed their music. Saturday was the first time that we have seen them for a couple of years (they were pursuing other parts of their lives), but they’re back. They played at Brianza Gardens and Winery on Saturday afternoon.
We enjoyed their show immensely! The music ranges from Fergie and the Indigo Girls to country classics like Johnny Cash. We especially were pleased that they remembered our favorite and sang a great rendition of “Hell on Heels” by Pistol Annies.
The wine, as always, was excellent. Thanks to the winemaking skills of Tony Parnigoni.
It was a beautiful day to relax with good wine and good music!
Saturday was a great day for wine and music lovers in Northern Kentucky. We started the afternoon with a visit to Brianza Gardens and Winery in Boone County, with a Mini Music Festival that led off with a visit from Rucca and ended the evening at 12 Mile Creek Winery in Campbell County listening to Jeff Blackburn and Steve Maynard. Good music, good wine and good food – what could be better!by admin
Anyone who knows me or has read my blog knows that I am not a fan of sweet wines. But this summer I have been a fan of some of Kentucky’s sweet wines. You might wonder why and the answer is Sangria. This is a season for fresh fruit and refreshing drinks – that means Sangria to me.
Our favorite is peach sangria made with a mix of peach juice and peach wine and fresh peaches, blueberries, and lime slices. We did add a bit of grappa, peach nectar, and sparkling water. The result is an excellent refreshing drink to enjoy on a hot July day. We have also tried using blueberries and blackberries.
Wineries, such as Prodigy Vineyards and Winery and Purple Toad offer a variety of fruit wines. Kentucky’s farms offer fresh blueberries (which I’ve picked several times recently) and blackberries. I must confess to buying peaches from South Carolina and the Grappa and Peach Nectar come from Huber Vineyards and Winery in Indiana. Summer offers a variety of fresh fruits to create a wonderful Sangria, choose your favorites.by admin
We visit Brianza often, but are especially glad to visit for the special wine events that they host. This month we were lucky to experience two special tastings of their excellent wines.
A couple of weeks ago, winemaker Tony Parnigoni, hosted a marketing tasting where visitors were able to try several vintages of his red wines and compare them, and also try their hand at blending some varietals and taste the results. For true wine lovers, it was an interesting experience.
This past weekend, library wines were brought out for tasting. Library wines are old vintages of the same wine. Vintages are the year the grapes were grown. Each vintage differs just a bit due to the differences in the weather and the changes that makes to the growing season. For instance, dry summers make for great red wines. As a relatively new winery the library wines are not very old, but there are still subtle distinct vintages. Brianza’s library wines were fun to try. Again, true wine lovers enjoy experiences such as this as they are always looking for new ways to learn about their favorite wines. Tony’s Cabernet Sauvignon is our favorite and has had several great vintages. The day was made even more enjoyable by the musical entertainment of Jeff Blackburn and Steve Maynard.
It was a great way to spend a Sunday afternoon!by admin
Chrisman Mill Vineyard and Winery is one of the oldest wineries opened in Kentucky. They planted their first vines in 1997, released their first vintage in 1999, sold their wines at a tasting room in Lexington, and opened the vineyard tasting room to visitors in 2003. Since then, they have served tastings, had events, hosted special Tuscan dinners as well as other dinners, taken part in a number of festivals around the state, and have developed a tradition of fine wine.
For those who have not visited Chrisman Mill for a while, changes have arrived. There’s still a vineyard and winery, but now a distillery and a restaurant are there as well.
The vineyard itself is also changing. Old vines coming out and new ones being planted. Some new wines will be coming as well. Just released is an Old Vine Zinfandel. The grapes came from Lodi, California and were well worth it. The wine is a dry red with flavors of blueberry, raspberry, and spicy oak. It is a lovely addition to the menu. The décor is new as well but retains the welcoming ambiance that fans of the winery have come to expect.
The distillery, Hummingbird Ridge, is in the beginning stages with only one offering (for now). A Jamaican style small batch pot-stilled rum that retains the flavors and characteristics of the sugar can and blackstrap molasses. Tastings as well as a selection of mixed drinks are available and are delicious.
The restaurant, Fuego, features wood-fired dining in a Latin American and Argentinian style, but hand prepared with local all natural ingredients. A large grill in an outdoor kitchen is where most of the foods are prepared. Lunches and four-course dinners are available on the weekends. Check their website for times. We tried lunch and enjoyed it and are looking forward to trying dinner soon.
The Nelsons have made lots of changes over the years but one thing has remained the same – Chrisman Mill is one of the best examples of the wine industry in Kentucky. Chris has from the beginning crafted fine wines and now has added distiller to his repertoire. Denise is an amazing chef who has never created a dish that wasn’t well-prepared and flavorful.
The weather is good, summer is on its way. It would be a great time to become reacquainted with or to try out Chrisman Mill. My advice, make plans for a visit to Nicholasville. You’ll be glad you did!by admin
Nicholasville in Jessamine County, home to the first commercial winery in the United States, is now home to its third winery. Opening last year, 1922 House Vineyards and Winery are making some very interesting dry red wines, Norton wines, one which is aged in a bourbon barrel, Chambourcin wine, and a Noriet wine.
They are a small farm winery and will be opening a tasting room sometime in the future, hopefully in the summer. Check back on their website for updates about how they are coming along. The owner and winemaker, Brian Young, is from the business world and is new to the wine industry, but is enthusiastic and creative with a lot of ideas for developing his winery.
The name, 1922 House, comes from the house at the farm that was built in 1922. The setting for the winery is quite lovely. We’re looking forward to visiting their tasting room.
Here’s a copy of the Press Release for the event. Thanks to Annette Mathy, Event Coordinator.
Join us for the 12th annual “Wine Barrel Tasting for the Springs” on Saturday, March 30th 11AM-5PM. Participants will travel on their own to 13 different wineries to sample wine that is ready for bottling. They may have the opportunity to meet the winemakers and discuss their favorite subject. Fee: $20. Proceeds benefit McConnell Springs, the site of the naming of Lexington in 1775. For more information and a list of wineries, visit mcconnellsprings.org. or call 859.272.0682. Sponsored by the Friends of McConnell Springs. This is a rain or shine event.
Mark the date on your calendars. It is a fun day for all Kentucky wine lovers. The wineries are all ready to welcome visitors and there are always some fun activities planned. This is also a time when spring is beginning to be felt in the state and of course at the vineyards. It’s a great weekend for visiting wineries.
Check my links for a direct link to their site.by admin
Several of the wineries that we visit now opened after the publication of A Wine Lover’s Odyssey Across Kentucky. I have written about them here on the blog. One of our favorites is Forest Edge Winery. Just south of Louisville, in southern Bullitt County is a lovely tasting room just off I-65. The wines are all exceptional and there is something for every wine lover. We visited both on our way to Nashville and on our way home. It was a good way to relax along the way.
Butch Meyer, the winemaker, was there during one of our visits and we had the opportunity to chat with him about wine as well as drink some of his best wines. My choice was his Sauvignon Blanc, easily the best made in Kentucky. My husband had a glass of Cabernet Sauvignon one of the best in the state.
They had made some changes since we visited last summer and have moved the wine production to another building. This left room for a new space devoted to gatherings of wine lovers. As a destination or as a relaxing stop on your way somewhere, I recommend a visit! You’ll love it!