Having heard about Harford Vineyard’s “Go Local for the Holidays” event, occurring each weekend in December, my friend and I decided to head out to the winery to check it out. A friend of mine visited Harford, and two other wineries along the Piedmont Wine Trail, just as the harvest had begun (see the link below to the blog entry), and had spoken well of Harford Vineyard.
We arrived just after noontime, and followed the signs down to the room where piping hot soups were being served by local chef Michael Pescrille. Maryland crab soup and cream of crab soup were offered — and both were delicious. In addition, small cheese platters were offered, providing a selection of cheeses, crackers, and grapes.
Harford Vineyard and Winery is located in the heart of the Piedmont Wine Trail (see http://www.marylandwine.com/ for more about the various wine trails), in as the winery’s name suggests, Harford County (Md).
Our server was Theresa, one of the owners of the winery. She said they run the winery while working “day jobs,” although her husband was planning on “retiring” soon so he can concentrate full time on the vineyard. Harford Vineyard was founded in 2003 when Vidal and Traminette grapes were planted, followed by Merlot grapes in 2005. Currently, Harford Vineyard offers 11 wines, that run the gamut from dry whites to sweet reds and a very popular peach wine.
so Theresa recommended that we should try Fiore Winery, just 15 minutes away. Fiore, as its name implies, echoes its founders’ Italian heritage and creates “Maryland wines with an Italian accent.” Formerly a vineyard owner in Italy, Mike, one of the owners, had long wondered if the farm he and his wife owned since 1975 was the right location to bring a little bit of the old country to Maryland. He joined a Wine Growers Association to learn about French-hybrid grapes, which were the grapes popular with most growers at the time. Soon, Mike and Rose planted a small experimental vineyard behind their house and it slowly grew in size. Over the next 20 years, the pair turned their passion into prosperity. While working other jobs, they gradually increased their production from 1,500 to 35,000 gallons; and their wines have garnered them hundreds of awards, including 50 international medals between 2005 and 2008.
Tip: If you avoid purchasing wine and pack your own picnic, this is a budget-friendly day trip!
|On our way back to our car we encountered this funny pony hanging
about with three of her friends in the nearby pasture
Dogs: No, not even for the holidays!!
Hours: Harford Vineyard tasting room hours Friday 12-6 pm, Saturday 10-5 pm, Sunday 12-5 pm; Fiore
Winery tasting room is open April through October Monday – Friday 10 am – 5 pm, Saturday 10 am – 6 pm, Sunday 12 pm – 6 pm and November through March Monday – Saturday 10 am – 5 pm and Sunday 12 pm – 5 pm.
Websites: Harford Vineyard http://stores.harfordvineyard.com/; Fiore Winery www.fiorewinery.com
Previous blogs about Maryland wineries:
Royal Rabbit, Mount Felix, and a previous visit to Harford Vineyards: http://www.midatlanticdaytrips.blogspot.com/2013/10/piedmont-wine-trail-harvest-time.html
Linganore Winecellars, Serpent Ridge Vineyards, and Black Ankle: http://www.midatlanticdaytrips.blogspot.com/2013/07/a-taste-wineries-of-maryland-first-in.html
Dejon and Boordy vineyards: http://www.midatlanticdaytrips.blogspot.com/2013/10/dejon-and-boordy-contrast-of-new-and.html
Red Heifer Winery: http://www.midatlanticdaytrips.blogspot.com/2013/10/red-heifer-winery-furlough-special.html
Elk Run: http://www.midatlanticdaytrips.blogspot.com/2013/08/yoga-and-wine-in-vineyard.html
Check out the blog’s FB page for updates on places we’ve visited and blogged about: facebook.com/midatlanticdaytrips!
Have you daytripped somewhere interesting? I’d love to hear what you’re doing! Email [email protected] if you’re interested in being a guest-blogger!