Take Five: Wineries

Five of our favorite vineyards, featuring notes of Southern tradition and style

Biltmore Winery, Asheville, North CarolinaBiltmore Winery
Asheville, North Carolina

America’s most visited winery isn’t located in Napa Valley, as one might expect. Look instead to the Blue Ridge Mountains of North Carolina and the grounds of the Biltmore Estate, the largest home in the nation. Some 600,000 visitors stop by the estate’s winery, situated in the converted dairy barn, to sample its award-winning varietals and blends like the Reserve Chardonnay and Blanc de Blancs. For a behind-the-scenes look, book an exclusive Vine to Wine Tour, available through October. biltmore.com/our_wine

muscadine grapesPerdido Vineyards
Perdido, Alabama

Appealing to Southern tastes, this husband-and-wife-owned winery cultivates fifty acres of muscadine grapes. After a free tour and tasting, take home a bottle of Rose Cou Rouge or “Redneck Rose,” a semi-dry table wine that is the winery’s claim to fame. Other favorites include Sweet Apple, Blueberry Jubilee, and Queen of Carnival (a cherry dessert vintage). Even the labels—designed by local artists and inspired by area events and locales—celebrate Alabama culture. perdidovineyards.net

Raffaldini Vineyards and Winery, Ronda, North CarolinaRaffaldini Vineyards and Winery
Ronda, North Carolina

This family-owned winery traces its roots back to fourteenth-century Italy. In fact, they chose the Yadkin Valley for its similarities to Tuscany. Known for its incredible scenery and Old World architecture, the “Chianti in the Carolinas” crafts outstanding Central and Southern Italian varietals, such as Sangiovese and Pinot Grigio. Learn about the creation of a bottle of Raffaldini wine from start to finish on a behind-the-scenes Private Label Tour, then enjoy a picnic on the piazza. raffaldini.com

Yonah Mountain Vineyards, Cleveland, GeorgiaYonah Mountain Vineyards
Cleveland, Georgia

Join the owner of Yonah Mountain Vineyards for a private tour of Georgia’s only wine cave and sample future vintages straight from the barrel (call ahead for availability). Afterwards, enjoy a full tasting of six wines at the nearby Sautee-Nacoochee tasting room and pick up a bottle of the celebrated Bordeaux-style Genesis blends. A multi-million-dollar expansion of the winery and cellar—including the addition of a new tasting room offering spectacular views of the surrounding vineyards—is scheduled for completion in December. yonahmountainvineyards.com

Three Sisters Vineyards, Dahlonega, GeorgiaThree Sisters Vineyards
Dahlonega, Georgia

Named after a nearby mountain, this family-owned farm, located just eight miles from the site of America’s first gold rush, is particularly known for its Fat Boy wines, available in a smooth pink, robust red, and citrusy white. Take home a Georgia Jug—three liters of sipping table wine (an off dry red and white blend)—for $43. Enjoy live music and barbecue with your favorite Fat Boy during popular Swine Wine Weekends through October. threesistersvineyards.com