Catering • Beverages • The Mast Farm Inn was the first establishment in our county to receive its beer and wine license. Though Watauga County is a dry county, we are authorized to serve beer, wine, liquor and all alcoholic beverages at The Inn, and at special events for which we do the catering such as weddings.
This in part due to the the Inn’s listing as a National Historic Register property, but primarily as the preeminent hospitality establishment located in North Carolina’s First Rural Historic District. This license was actually the object of a special state law voted by the North Carolina legislature. In the interim The Inn, Simplicity and Over Yonder have received full Spirits, Beer, Wine, Mixed Beverage ABC licenses and feature full service bars at catered events. Needless to say we like craft beer and spirits and wine, and know our way around from both a quality and price perspective. We have a wide selection of spirits beer and wine available from mainstream brands as well as small breweries and vineyards. We especially feature North Carolina Micro-Breweries, NC Craft Spirits and Wine from our State’s Vineyards and wineries. Beer, Wine and Spirits need not be expensive to be good, but you do need to know your way around. Below is a list of some of our signature and featured alcoholic beverages. Besides the fact that the quality is good as it gets, getting creative and staying local can save you expense while your event can support North Carolina’s nascent Craft Beer, Craft Spirits and Wine communities. In fact whether you decide to have your wedding at the Inn or not, we hope this page will help present these outstanding enterprises, and reinforce the benefits to you and to our state of exploring NC spirits, craft beers, and wines, for your wedding & other special events in the future.
Featured Craft Spirits of North Carolina
If unfamiliar with the recent rebirth of the North Carolina spirits industry, make no mistake it’s about history, heritage and legacy, not folklore. Many of these spirits match in every way the noble excellence of the fifty dollar a shot Grappas being poured in Milan and Rome, and the hundred dollar a shot Calvados being poured in Normandy and Paris, as we speak.
“It has been called a quiet revolution. A renaissance. And Western North Carolina is smack in the middle of it. With five distilleries opening in 2010-2011, our region is keeping stride with a national craft liquor trend. “It’s exploding,” says Bill Owens, president of The American Distilling Institute in California. “In 2000, there were only 24 craft distilleries in the entire United States. By the end of 2011, there were 244. And it keeps getting bigger.” ~ WNC Magazine, Mountain Spirits, November 2012 • As of September 1st, 2015, The Distillers Association of North Carolina, a non-profit association with the mission to promote craft distilling in North Carolina, includes in its membership 27 active operating licensed distillers located throughout North Carolina. In 15 years North Carolina designed, built and launched more craft distillers than existed in all of the United States in 2000. In fact, 30 of the state’s 33 licensed distilleries have opened in the last five years.
TOPO • Top of the Hill Distillery
Top of the Hill Distillery crafts TOPO Organic Spirits at our facility in Chapel Hill, North Carolina. We are the only fully local and USDA certified organic distillery in the South. Our vodka, gin, and whiskeys are world-class, award-winning selections that celebrate making great spirits from the finest ingredients available right here in our home state. TOPO Organic Piedmont Gin: TOPO Piedmont Gin is an aromatic botanical mix that appeals to a wide range of palates. We’ve seen many in our tasting room who profess a great dislike for the strong flavor of gins suddenly find themselves with a new friend at the table. The understated juniper allows the ten other spices to really shine through. We’ve put together a collection that truly showcases the glory of this five-hundred-year-old spirit. TOPO Organic Carolina Moonshine Whiskey: Of the six sisters of American Whiskey — Bourbon, Rye, Malted Rye, Malted Barley, Corn, & Wheat — wheat is the smoothest and best tasting. But owing to its expense, wheat fell out of favor as a distilling grain over 150 years ago. We think it’s time wheat whiskey made a comeback. Drink our Carolina Moonshine Whiskey now and enjoy a sophisticated un-aged whiskey, or age it and savor what wheat can do as it turns to gold. TOPO Organic Vodka: Like a great southern party guest, TOPO Vodka has enough character and depth to carry the conversation alone, but is classy and smooth enough to mix nicely with others. See some exceptional recipes by clicking here, here and here.
Troy & Sons • Asheville Distilling Company
True mountain moonshine is made from corn, and we hunted throughout the WNC mountains for the perfect strain – and found it just a few miles from Asheville. The corn had become virtually extinct everywhere except on the McEntire Farm…believed to be lost from Eastern Tennessee since 1840. Crooked Creek Corn™ is an heirloom open-pollinated white corn that has been grown on the McEntire farm for over one hundred twenty years. Troy & Sons Platinum Small-Batch Moonshine: The first true American Moonshine. Honoring the tradition of fine spirit makers from the mountains of Appalachia. Troy & Sons Oak Reserve: Our Oak Reserve is mellowed in bourbon barrels, bringing forth flavors of caramel and sweet white oak and further enhancing the trademark smoothness you expect from Troy & Sons. Like our Troy & Sons Platinum, our Oak Reserve is made with heirloom white corn and pure Appalachian spring water. Blonde: Blonde starts with rare heirloom Turkey Red Wheat and White Corn, grown on Peaceful Valley Farm in the lowland hills of Western North Carolina. That same strain of corn has been grown continuously at Peaceful Valley since the mid 1800’s, tended by generations of the McEntire Family. See some exceptional recipes by clicking here.
Junior Johnson’s Midnight Moon • Piedmont Distillers
Junior Johnson was born to run moonshine. It’s deep in his roots and it flows in his blood. Hell, back during the Whiskey Rebellion in 1791, his ancestors were some of the first to make ‘shine in Appalachia. And, about 150 years later, Junior’s family kept the tradition going in order to survive. Running moonshine wasn’t always easy, or legal for that matter, but the Johnsons did what they had to do to keep food on the table. BORN IN THE BACKCOUNTRY. REFINED FOR THE REST OF US. Midnight Moon is inspired by Junior Johnson’s legendary moonshine recipe. It’s distilled from American corn to be ultra-smooth and clean tasting. And boy is it ever. So pop a jar open and pass it around, you’re gonna love our high-quality moonshine. YOU GOT THE BERRIES? It’s no coincidence that our fruit flavored ‘shine tastes like actual fruit. Each mason jar is filled by hand with delicious berries, cherries, peaches, or apple juice and cinnamon. No artificial flavors or color additives, just fruit in its most savory form. See some exceptional recipes by clicking here.
Defiant • Blue Ridge Distilling Company
DEFIANT WHISKY VOTED BEST NEW WHISKEY OF 2013. The Defiant spirit runs through our souls. That craving for adventure and breaking away from convention. Finding truth in authenticity. Some chase a few defiant moments. Others live a lifetime in the spirit. Our crew behind the stills are salvage divers by trade, working at the edge of catastrophe at the bottom of the ocean. We run towards certain disaster and change fate with metal, fire, water and intellect. Our whisky is created by those same virtues. In diving and in whisky, greatness is not coincidence. It is cultivated, pushed, practiced and always evolving. We’re rethinking whisky by taking the best of Scottish tradition and combining it with American ingenuity. We’re starting a whisky revolution. Charting a new course on the journey. And we’re doing it the Defiant way. Defiant is a new way of distilling. We’re not bound by barrels or recipes or tradition. Our guides are the best ingredients, Mother Nature and our own intuition. We only use four ingredients. Nothing more. Premium American white oak, toasted to perfection. Specially cultured yeast, selected by Tim. Two-row premium brewer’s barley. Pure water from the Blue Ridge Mountains. Start with quality, end with quality.
Broadslab Legacy • Broadslab Distillery
From the moonshine capital of North Carolina, we trace the true heritage of a craft that’s rooted in secrecy under the cloak of darkness. Our Shine, Legacy Whiskey and Rum preserve the skills, and techniques of over five generations of master distillers. See some exceptional recipes by clicking here. Broadslab Legacy Shine: Sip the actual spirits that have built legends. This genuine white corn whisky is made from the purest natural ingredients. Broadslab Legacy Reserve: Sip the warmth of a genuine corn whiskey enhanced through traditional charred oak. Carolina Coast Spiced Rum: Our secret mix of all natural spices is aged in charred oak. This 80 proof, small-batch rum is artisan-crafted and hand-bottled. Carolina Coast Silver Rum: Sippably sweet and pure. Flavorful enough to mix. Distilled from sugar and sugar molasses – nothing else.
Covington Gourmet Vodka • Covington Spirits
Covington® Gourmet Vodka is handmade locally from sprout to spirit. It’s expertly crafted in small batches using a combination of traditional and modern distilling practices. Our unhurried approach and varietal selection of locally grown Covington® sweet potatoes costs us a little more, however, ensures a truly premium vodka. We are Jimmy Burch and Bobby Ham, 3rd generation sweet potato farmers in rural eastern North Carolina, the sweet potato capital of the United States. We grow, harvest and deliver delicious sweet potatoes to dinner tables all over the world. We have found sweet potatoes (Iponmoea batatas) make superior vodka. Now we also grow, distill and deliver great vodka to glasses around the world, and the proof is in the bottle. Produced in small batches to capture the middle 60 percent known as the “heart” of the distillate. This handcrafting yields a smooth, clear lovely character, coaxed from the fruits of the land. The spent mash is returned to the soil to enrich the next crop. We owe our good fortune to the sweet miracles of mother nature and to family farmers who work the fertile soils of North Carolina — home to the world’s best sweet potatoes and this exceptional vodka. See some exceptional recipes by clicking here.
Catdaddy • Piedmont Distillers
Catdaddy Spiced Moonshine is an ultra-smooth spirit that’s handcrafted in small batches, made from corn and triple distilled. Catdaddy is infused with a proprietary blend of all natural spices and flavors to create a spicy meets sweet taste. See some exceptional recipes by clicking here.
Cardinal Gin • Southern Artisan Spirits
We were the third legal distillery established in the state of North Carolina. Our small batch gin mixes tradition and modern technology. No other distillery in the United States uses the same methods as Southern Artisan Spirits. The botanicals are all organic and fresh. Southern Artisan Spirits is located in the foothills of the Blue Ridge Mountains , in a city known as Kings Mountain. Kings Mountain was the first community in the United States to vote itself legally dry in October of 1874. However, in the latter half of the 19th century there were many distilleries located in the same county as Kings Mountain.
Brothers Vilgalys • The Brothers Vilgalys Spirits Company
HANDMADE IN SMALL BATCHES. Brothers Vilgalys Spirits was started in 2012 to bring Krupnikas, a traditional Lithuanian style of Spice Honey Liqueur, to the American market. Our Krupnikas has a delicious and complex flavor unlike any other spirit or liqueur. It is smooth enough to sip on its own, starting out with sweet honey flavors that build to a warm spicy finish. Our recipe started on our stovetop at home as a special drink we made for friends and family. We still make it the same way, using only whole spices, North Carolina wildflower honey, and pure grain neutral alcohol. See some exceptional recipes by clicking here.
NEW GINS & LIQUERS FOR THE NEW SOUTH. At Durham Distillery, we employ a unique two-step process that showcases the complexity and quality of each ingredient. This process combines time-honored gin-making traditions with techniques borrowed from modern chemistry to create spirits that are both classic and contemporary. We also produce liqueurs which feature premium-quality ingredients from celebrated Triangle artisans, our liqueurs are labors of love and edible works of art.
Mystic Bourbon • Barrister & Brewer
Mystic™ Bourbon Liqueur combines the luxury of spiced liqueur with the sophistication of bourbon. The classic bourbon nose gives way to notes of candied orange and wild flower honey laced with hints of mint and anise. The full-body features a delicate combination of black peppercorn and cinnamon on the mid-palate, complementing the soft essence of vanilla and citrus. The long finish culminates in a classic toffee-bourbon note with a faint ginger echo. See some exceptional recipes by clicking here.
Doc Porter’s Craft Spirits
Making top shelf grain to glass spirits in the city we love is our passion. Doc Porter’s vodka is made from North Carolina wheat that is milled on-site at the distillery. This gives you a regional taste, unique to Doc Porter’s. Our vodka is carefully fermented and patiently distilled, then continuously filtered through activated carbon. Only the hearts of the spirit are included and cut with reverse osmosis- filtered Carolina water. The result is a smooth, one of a kind taste we know you’ll enjoy.
Fair Game Beverage Company
At the heart of our wines and spirits are the fruits, grains and juices and the people who grow them. We work hard to source high quality fruits, grains and juices directly from North Carolina and southeastern growers. In fact, nearly all of our Grape wines and Sweet Sorghum are grown and harvested by Andy and Chris, and our grains are grown and malted right here in the Piedmont. We study the old hand crafted methods of Portugal, Italy and Cognac, France to bring world class wine and spirits to Chatham County, North Carolina. At Fair Game Beverage we craft our spirits in an Alembic copper pot still using classic fermentation and slow distillation methods to create richly flavored yet delicate spirits true to their origin. Here we’ll walk you through the steps taken to produce our Sorghum Cane Spirit, or Sorghum Rhum as we like to call it.
Mother Earth Spirits
WHISKEY. GOLDEN GRAINS. Mother Earth Spirits’ whiskey aroma brings notes of caramel, fresh leather, and toasted oak. Your palate is met by fresh cut hay, a slight spiciness complementing oaky semi-sweetness before a subtle dry lingering finish. GIN. THE ESSENTIAL SPIRIT. We distill our wash and we infuse the spirits with our botanicals. The end result is gin that is produced over a two week span. RUM. OLD SOUTHERN SUPERSTITIONS. Mother Earth Rum delivers a drop of sweetness and a dollop of old fashioned molasses in a rum that not only a “mother” will love. The southern spirit will rise again with each sip.
Seventy Eight °C Spirits
Seventy Eight °C Spirits is a micro distillery headquartered in Raleigh, NC, notable for being the first legal distillery in Wake County. Limoncello: Only the finest citrus is used in the making of this handcrafted liqueur. Each lemon is hand selected. Precise peeling produces a clean zest ensuring optimal flavor without bitterness. Inspired by a classic Italian recipe, our limoncello delivers a slightly sweet, fresh, lemony taste for your enjoyment. Jalapeño Limoncello: The jalapeño limoncello delivers a slightly sweet, lemony taste with a spicy jalapeño finish. Blood Orangecello: A blood orangecello is currently in development as a seasonal item, based on availability of blood oranges.See some exceptional recipes by clicking here.
Muddy River Distillery
Handcrafted rums made with premium ingredients, original recipes, and custom-built stills from North Carolina’s first rum distillery. Handcrafted with the finest ingredients and aged in virgin American white oak barrels, this unique rum has a rich and complex flavor that can be enjoyed straight, on the rocks, or in your favorite cocktail. See some exceptional recipes by clicking here and here.
Raleigh Rum Company
Our White Rum is a bold, authentic spirit made with only molasses and brown sugar. We double distill each batch and do a round of oak aging in-between distillations to help create a smooth and rich flavor. We are also slightly stronger than most rums on the market. The sweet yet strong taste is a perfect match for daiquiris and mojitos.See some exceptional recipes by clicking here.
Carolina Distillery is the producer of Carriage House Apple Brandy, Carriage House White Apple Brandy, Carriage House Strawberry Infusion, and Snake Bite. Our mission is to produce a quality product supporting local business and carrying on a valuable North Carolina tradition. We handcraft our single-barrel Brandy with the experience of three generations of North Carolina moonshiners. Using fresh, locally grown ingredients, it is distilled in a copper pot still and single barrel proofed to give each batch its own unique character and flavor.
Outer Banks Distilling
From Molasses to Glasses. Rum is produced in many different ways but we believe the best way is through small batches with quality ingredients, be it molasses or sugar cane syrup. If any additional ingredients are added, such as spices or other flavors, they should be natural and as local as possible. It all starts by selecting the right kind of molasses for the style of rum being made, be it light, gold or dark. Fermentation and yeast selection, very familiar to brewers, are critical to achieve a desired flavor profile, especially for dark rums.
Featured Craft Beers of North Carolina
If you think our spirits sector is vibrant, take a look at what is happening in the North Carolina Craft Beer community. With over a hundred craft breweries in the state we list below some of the craft breweries which distribute in our area.
North Carolina is home to over 132 breweries and brewpubs, the most of any state south of Pennsylvania and east of Texas. We are the State of Southern Beer. Sierra Nevada, New Belgium, and Oskar Blues, three of the largest craft breweries in the United States, have established their second brewing operations in our great state. Every year NC celebrates North Carolina Beer Month which includes hundreds of craft beer-centric events: Beer dinners, Brewery collaborations, Craft beer festivals, Brewery tours and beer related special tour and travel packages.
Fullsteam is a Durham, North Carolina-based brewery and tavern. Our niche is “plow to pint” brewing, incorporating Southern food and farm traditions into the beer-making process. In the past few years, North Carolina’s beer selection has flourished with beers around the world: Belgian dubbels, tripels, and quads; English bitters and barleywine, German lagers. Amazing craft beer from US breweries establishing regional traditions and styles: the West Coast IPA phenomenon. Hearty Wisconsin lagers. Experimental beers from the Northeast. But we have yet to develop a Southern craft beer identity. Fullsteam’s mission is to craft this identity. To create a distinctly Southern beer style that celebrates the culinary and agricultural heritage of the South.
Highland Brewing Company
Highland Brewing Company rolled out its first beer kegs in December 1994. Aside from our commitment to quality, the most important factor in Highland ‘s longevity and success is the guidance provided by owner & founder Oscar Wong and Vice President John Lyda, who have been at the brewery since its inception. They instill values of integrity and respect in every employee, for people and for our environment. We are thrilled that our humble start, as a three-person operation, has grown into a staff of over forty. Currently, the Highland brand is sold in Alabama, Florida, Georgia, Kentucky, North Carolina, Ohio, South Carolina, Tennessee, Virginia and Washington D.C. Our beers are just like us, a wee bit different. Few of our beers fall into categories, but we believe each beer is excellent. We believe each beer has a personality – and personalities like ours don’t always fit into categories.
The Duck-Rabbit Craft Brewery
We are a small packaging microbrewery located in Farmville, North Carolina. We sold our first beer in August of 2004. We specialize in beautiful, delicious, full flavored dark beers. When we brew, we’re happy and we dance. During fermentation, we sing softly to the yeast. Duck-Rabbit products are distributed by Tryon Distributing throughout North Carolina.
Blowing Rock Brewing Company
Blowing Rock Brewing Company began with a single idea—to create a beer that captured the finest qualities of the High Country. In 2007, we set out to make this idea a reality. We believed in the clean mountain water, unique ingredients, and local community of our home. We saw untapped potential for a craft beer unlike any other. The two of us spent nearly five years dedicating ourselves to research, assembling an award-winning team and perfecting signature recipes.
Appalachian Mountain Brewery
We brew all of our beer at the tasting room on our 10 barrel JV Northwest All-American made system. Our brew system features a mix of 10-barrel and 20-barrel high-grade glycol chilled stainless steel jacked fermenters and several bright tanks. We are deeply involved in the local High Country community, and we are proud to be developing the area into a more verdant, healthy and exciting place to live and visit.
Mother Earth Brewing Company
Take the goodness of garden-grown products, the warmth of small town life, the earthy ethic of rock ‘n roll, a deep respect for a time-honored craft… and you have the ingredients of Mother Earth Brewing. Born in the summer of 2008, Mother Earth is the dream-child of Stephen Hill and Trent Mooring, two guys from Kinston, North Carolina, a sweet southern town in the heart of the old tobacco belt.
Award winning brewery in the Southeast featuring some of the best hand crafted beers! Foothills Brewing sets the standard in the Southeast for outstanding brewpub atmosphere, cuisine and craft beer. Widely respected in regional craft brewing circles, Foothills’ co-owner and head brewer, Jamie Bartholomaus, leads an outstanding brewing team that provides house beers for the brewpub and off-premise draft sales to craft beer outlets in the Carolinas.
Aviator Brewing Company
Aviator Brewing Company started in Nov 2008 in an airplane hangar. We initially brewed into two used dairy tanks. Each tank held 300 gallons of beer. Much to our surprise we quickly outgrew these tanks! In Jan 2009 we had started distribution into the Triangle area. The demand for the beer grew faster than we could brew. In April 2010 we moved from the airplane hangar at Triple W airport to a larger building about 4 miles away. We have expanded the brewery yet again and have added more fermentation tanks and a large cooler.
Big Boss Brewing Company
Big Boss Brewing Company was started in 2006 and shipped its first beer in the 2nd quarter of 2007 in the triangle area of North Carolina. It was formed as a collaboration between Geoff Lamb, a UNC graduate, who returned to North Carolina in 2006 to join forces with Brewmaster, Brad Wynn, who has 12+ years of brewing experience including several years with Victory, Wild Goose and Native Brewing Company.
Carolina Brewery is a locally-owned brewery and restaurant that has drawn international attention for its handcrafted beers. Our award-winning signature beers include Flagship IPA (Gold Medal, Great American Beer Festival), Copperline Amber Ale (Gold Medal, World Beer Championships), Sky Blue Golden Ale (Silver Medal, World Beer Championships), and Oatmeal Porter. We also offer a rotating list of seasonal brews. Our beers are now available on tap and in growlers and cans throughout North Carolina.
French Broad Brewing Company
Since opening our doors in 2001, our goal has been to create traditional European style beers while maintaining the unique flavor that is Asheville. Our tasty creations can be found all over North Carolina, Tennessee, Alabama and Louisiana, with new territories coming soon.
Sierra Nevada Brewing Company
We brewed our first batch of beer in 1980 in Chico, California, the lush forests of North Carolina far from our mind. Over three decades, folks tried our bold beers and deemed them fit for friends across the country. In time a second brewery became the wisest, most sustainable way to send fresh beer to the farthest reaches. Today you can venture inside our Mills River brewery to trace our history as a craft beer pioneer and see first-hand our drive to make flavorful beer the status quo. Cruise up our wooded driveway, park under a solar-panel canopy, and head behind the scenes with us.
New Belgium Brewing
Brewing beer in Asheville by the end of 2015. As the weather cools off, construction continues at a furious pace at the $140 million New Belgium brewery in West Asheville along the French Broad River. An employee-owned craft brewery, New Belgium crafts Belgian-inspired brews and three new seasonal beers every quarter. Some of its well-known year-round varieties include Fat Tire Amber Ale, Ranger IPA, and Trippel.
At Hi-Wire, we strive to be as independent and authentic as possible, while maintaining an approachability to our beers. Located in Downtown Asheville’s Brew District, Hi-Wire Brewing embraces its craft from top to bottom – from its highly drinkable, hand-crafted brews to its artwork, hand-drawn by a local artist. Our light-hearted circus theme embodies the fun, authenticity, and creativity of this deep-rooted craft. You can find our beers on draught and in bottles at North Carolina bars and restaurants as well as in our tasting room. Or grab a 6-pack of bottles at area groceries, gas stations, convenience stores, and specialty beer/wine shops.
Green Man Brewery
The legendary Green Man has existed for centuries but it’s no myth that he’s been brewing great beer in Asheville since 1997. As one of North Carolina’s oldest breweries, Green Man has been producing some of the beer scene’s most iconic ales. Our offerings are consistently recognized for quality as well as loyalty to traditional English styles. Additionally, our brewers strive to bring innovative and exciting new flavors to beer loving folks.
Olde Hickory Brewery
Beginning in 1994 with a 7 barrel converted dairy system, we set and accomplished the goal of providing unique traditional ales & lagers available through OHB. Quickly we outgrew that system. In 1997, we began the renovation of an 1880 Historic Landmark building, which now houses our brewing facilities, a 25-barrel Price Schonstrom brew house.
Blind Squirrel Brewery
Microbreweries, or “Craft Breweries” as we like to call them, are popping up all over the U.S. At Blind Squirrel, we operate four separate three barrel systems, giving us a range of diversity that is unsurpassed in the High Country. What started as a true nano-brewery has now evolved into a micro-setup that is unlike any other that we have seen before.
Granite Falls Brewing Company
Our pioneering IPA is a free spirit who ventures off the well-worn trail. She scored our Brewmaster a Silver medal at the 2001 Great American Beer Festival, and this beauty has grown up a lot since then. Pouring hazy orange-amber with a wispy head, our flagship IPA has Cascade, Simcoe, and other American hops, and is double dry hopped with Citra hops.
Featured Wines of North Carolina
And North Carolina has been making some outstanding wines for quite a while. North Carolina is home to more than 100 wineries. The number of wineries has more than quadrupled since 2001. The industry has two focuses – native muscadine grapes and European-style vinifera grapes. Today, the 1.4 million acre Yadkin Valley is home to exquisite vineyards and wineries and was approved as North Carolina’s first American Viticultural Area.
The state’s geography ranges from coastal islands to mountains rising 6,000 feet high. This geographical diversity creates a variety of climate conditions. Higher elevations in the Appalachians have a climate similar to southern Canada while areas along the southern coast below Wilmington can be considered subtropical. From an abundance of rainfall in the mountains to dry ocean breezes along the coast, wine makers here have adapted well to various conditions, including the soil.
Located in the Yadkin Valley American Viticultural Area, the vineyard shares a similar climate and growing season to that of some of the best wine growing regions in Europe. The vineyard is one of the largest on the East Coast. On the estate, several varieties of vitis vinifera grapes are grown: Cabernet Franc,Cabernet Sauvignon, Chardonnay, Merlot, Malbec, Tannat, Petit Verdot, Riesling,Sauvignon Blanc, and Viognier. Shelton Vineyards uses a combination of French, American and Hungarian oak barrels. Oak barrels give flavor and structure to the wine; that is, they enhance the wine as a spice enhances fine food.
By opening the doors to Childress Vineyards in 2004, NASCAR team owner Richard Childress fulfilled a longtime dream that grew from the days when he first began racing in California and visited wineries with friends. What began as camaraderie and good times soon became an engaging passion for world-class wines and then the vision to build a world-class winery. Childress Vineyards features 72 acres of vineyards and 11 varieties of European Vitis vinifera cultivars at two vineyards sites: Richard’s Hampton Road Estate in Davidson County and Vineyard Crossing at the winery site. Childress Vineyards produces a broad range of wines to appeal to both the introductory palate and the seasoned taster. More than 30 wines are produced including Classic house blends, premium varietals, a sparkling wine, dessert wines, Reserves, Signature Reserves and Muscadine wines.
Raffaldini Vineyards & Winery
Raffaldini Vineyards was established in the Swan Creek area of the Yadkin Valley. From this vineyard, we handcraft our Italian wines; wines that express not only their “sense of place”, but also utilize winemaking skills that have been refined throughout the ages. We invite you to try our bold, dry reds and delicate, complex white wines made from authentic, Italian varietals. Wines made from grapes grown by hand with utmost care; every detail painstakingly contemplated and executed in perfect harmony with nature.
Founded on a love of the land – and a passion for entertaining – the Vanderbilt legacy lives on in shades of red, white, and rosé. Biltmore has grown and tested numerous varietals. Six of them – Riesling, Chardonnay, Viognier, Cabernet Sauvignon, Cabernet Franc, and Merlot – have proven to be particularly well-suited for our western North Carolina terroir and the microclimate of the estate. Biltmore winemakers Bernard Delille and Sharon Fenchak bring together the art and science of winemaking. Despite their distinctly different backgrounds, the two share a common approach to winemaking as they create high-quality wines that are true to varietal character as well as food-friendly and a great value. Together, they have developed an outstanding portfolio of award-winning wines worthy of the finest Vanderbilt traditions of taste and style.
Westbend Vineyards is located in Lewisville, North Carolina. The 60 acres of prime vinifera vineyards are neatly tucked into the gently rolling countryside in the northwest corner of Forsyth County, where the Yadkin Valley begins. Today Westbend Vineyards proudly serves North Carolina as the “Pioneers of the Yadkin Valley.” Having the oldest wine grapes in the Yadkin Valley Appellation allows Westbend to produce a truer expression of “Old Vine” wine, which translates into quality.
RayLen Vineyards and Winery
The first vines for RayLen Vineyards & Winery were planted in 1999 when Joe and Joyce Neely purchased the property. Until then, the property had functioned as a dairy farm for nearly a century. Today, the rolling hills and winding drive romance our guests as they drive through 35,000 European varietal grape vines. When Vintner Steve Shepard first began making wines for RayLen Vineyards & Winery in 2000, only 2500 combined cases of Chardonnay, South Mountain’s Vineyard Chardonnay, Merlot, Carolinius, and Shiraz were produced. Today, production is over 10,000 cases of 16 different wines, including Pinot Grigio, Viognier, Riesling, Cabernet Franc, Pale Red, and the pre-eminent Category 5 Cabernet Blend. Awarded “Best in Show” in the Mid-Atlantic Wine Competition for the 2005 vintage, the Category 5 remains RayLen’s most popular red wine.
RagApple Lassie Vineyards
The RagApple Lassie Vineyard, happily grows in the small Yadkin County town of Boonville, North Carolina, located about 25 miles northwest of Winston-Salem, North Carolina and just under the western gaze of Pilot Mountain (to you Andy Griffith fans, this is Mount Pilot). Vineyards are not new to North Carolina, in fact, 150 years ago, North Carolina produced more grapes than all other states combined. However, the grapes grown at the time were Concords and they did not survive the interruptions caused by World War I and Prohibition.
Hanover Park Vineyard
From the soil and climate of the Yadkin Valley comes a selection of wines that could be easily confused with the wine from the Rhone River Valley in France. These wines reflect the time, care, and research necessary to make the best wine that can be made in an Old World style that begs for food pairings. Michael and Amy Helton have created an old world atmosphere, from the 1897 farmhouse tasting room to the outdoor spaces under the centuries old oaks which encourages friends and families to relax and linger.
Laurel Gray Vineyards
Nestled in the foothills of North Carolina lies a delightfully Southern vineyard and winery, located on farmland that has been nurtured by the Myers family for 10 generations. With the dream of preserving the family farm for future generations, Benny and Kim Myers planted their first grapes over 13 years ago and converted the old milking parlor into a tasting room. Ben and Kim Myers chose to invest in developing an award-winning vineyard which would produce international GOLD medal wines. Stephen Rigby joined our team at Laurel Gray as head winemaker on July 1st, 2015. Born in Mississippi, Stephen received his degree from Mississippi State University in 1977. His first job was working at the Enology (winemaking) Laboratory at the University. After two years, Stephen decided to hone his skills in the up-and-coming Virginia wine industry. After spending 18 years just north of the border, Stephen came south into North Carolina. He was instrumental in developing award-winning wine which helped catapult the new Yadkin Valley and Swan Creek AVA wine regions into popularity.
Flint Hill Vineyards
Flint Hill Vineyards is located on land that has been in the family for over one hundred years, earning the Century Family Farm designation from the United States Department of Agriculture. Flint Hill Vineyards opened in October of 2005. We currently have eight wines available. We have five varietals: Cabernet Sauvignon, Syrah (Synergy), Chambourcin, Viognier, and a Chardonnay. We also have a white, semi-sweet blend (Olde Yattken).
Elkin Creek Vineyard
The site of a historic grist mill built in 1896, and gracing a special spot where two creeks join together to become one. Established in 2001, Elkin Creek Vineyard bottled their first vintage in the fall of 2005. The winery overlooks Elkin Creek and the century old Elkin Creek Mill. The vineyards are comprised of six lush acres of Merlot, Sangiovese, Cabernet Sauvignon and Viognier.
Grassy Creek Vineyard & Winery
Grassy Creek Vineyard & Winery, founded in 2003 among the green hills surrounding Elkin at the historical Klondike Cabins, produces fine wines from North Carolina’s premier Yadkin Valley wine country. Located in the heart of the North Carolina wine industry, the Yadkin Valley is the first federally designated viticulture region in the State. The rich soil, rolling hills, and moderate climate create ideal conditions for growing grapes rich and robust in flavor. The continued emergence of new vineyard and winery projects across the state is breathing new life in the area’s tourism industry. The nation’s wine industry began with the muscadine grape in North Carolina over a hundred years ago. Although early in its development, the Yadkin Valley is poised to become an internationally recognized region for world-class wines. With plantings in cabernet sauvignon, merlot, shiraz, sangiovese, grenache, chardonnay, pinot grigio, viognier, and sauvignon blanc, we offer a wide range of tasting alternatives. Our Grassy Creek wines are the more full-bodied, rich, and robust wines in our offering.
Divine Llama Vineyards
In 1975, two architecture students met in a design studio at Virginia Tech. Years later, they reunited to work together as architects in Winston-Salem. In 2006, Michael West and Tom Hughes, along with their wives Patricia and Julia, purchased 77 acres in East Bend in the Yadkin Valley Appellation, where they planted vineyards. In the spring of 2009, a tasting room opened, nestled among five acres of vineyards and twenty acres of pastures for llama and miniature horses. Varietals planted on the property include Chardonel, Traminette, Merlot and Cabernet Franc.
Sanders Ridge Vineyard & Winery
Sanders Ridge has been in the Shore family for nearly 170 years. Neil Shore, the great great grandson of John Benjamin Shore who settled the original 800 acres in 1847, is the fifth generation of Shore farmers to work the land on Sanders Ridge. Our many award winning wines are produced on site exclusively from the 7 varieties of French wine grapes as well as 2 native muscadine varieties – all grown by Neil in our 15 acre vineyard.
McRitchie Winery & Ciderworks
Located on nearly thirty acres in the foothills of the Blue Ridge Mountains — deep in the heart of the Yadkin Valley of North Carolina — lies McRitchie Winery & Ciderworks. After a lifetime spent growing grapes and making wines for others we decided it was finally time to grow and make it for ourselves. We had developed a deep affection for our corner of the Yadkin Valley and a vision of a vibrant new North Carolina wine industry. It was with boundless excitement that we planted our first five acres of grapes in 2004 on the flanks of the foothills of the Blue Ridge Mountains. The doors of the winery opened in time for the 2006 harvest and the tasting room opened in May of 2007.
Stony Knoll Vineyards
Stony Knoll Vineyards are lifted high on the foothills of the Blue Ridge Mountains against a Carolina sun that creates a bouquet of aromatic wonders and pleasures. The development of a “delivering terroir” began on this “North Carolina Century Farm” in 1896 when the ancestors of Kathy Coe bought a tract of land in southern Surry County. In the early 1940s the vineyard area was cleared with hand tools and domesticated animals and put into cultivation.
Chatham Hill Winery
Chatham Hill Winery was established in 1999 as the first winery in the Raleigh/Durham/Chapel Hill area and the first Urban Winery in North Carolina. Its mission is to produce distinctive, handcrafted wines of high quality and purity from grapes grown in North Carolina. Majority of Chatham Hill wines including Chardonnay, Viognier, Merlot, Cabernet Sauvignon, and Cabernet Franc are handcrafted from the best quality Yadkin Valley AVA grapes produced by our grower partners
Banner Elk Winery
Banner Elk Winery is the most celebrated winery in North Carolina’s High Country. We continue to lead the region’s commercial wine industry by providing guidance and encouragement to other local farms who are following our lead in planting vineyards with new French-American and American varieties of grapes. Awards received to date in 2013 include two Gold Medals at the 2013 International Eastern Wine Competition for the 2011 Banner Elk Red and 2011 Marechal Foch. A Bronze medal was also received for the 2011 Banner Elk White.
Grandfather Vineyard & Winery
Grandfather Vineyard & Winery was founded in the spring of 2003 when owner Steve Tatum planted the first vine. Starting as a hobby, Steve did some home wine-making for a few years. After son Dylan Tatum graduated from Surry Community College, the family decided they wanted to open a commercial winery. We opened the doors to the winery in May 2011, offering world-class wines. Our terraced mountain vineyard and winery is nestled right on the Watauga River at the base of Grandfather Mountain. We are the first producing winery in Watauga County. Warm breezes during the day and cool, crisp nights help develop the flavors and balance of our wine. We think you’ll find our wines unique. Enjoy and share with friends.
And of course we can supply any alcoholic or non-alcoholic beverage you need that is legal including Noble Kava from Boone, NC if you are of Polynesian descent, or Asheville’s Buchi Kombucha if you are a descendant of the Qin dynasty :-)
Besides the fact that the quality is as good as it gets, getting creative and staying local can save you a lot of expense and your events can support North Carolina’s nascent Craft Beer, Craft Spirits and Wine communities. In fact whether you decide to have your wedding at the Inn or not, we hope this page will help present these outstanding enterprises, and reinforce the benefits to you and to our state of exploring NC spirits, craft beers, and wines, for your wedding & other special events in the future.