Monday, September 30, 2013

Happy Missouri Wine Month

What better way to celebrate Missouri Wine Month than by popping open some bottles of MO wine and reminiscing about some of the amazing wineries we have visiting this year, as well as more wineries we are still hoping to experience before the year is up. So far our Missouri Wine Passport has 74 stamps in it, and we still have are hopes set at reaching 100 by the end of the year. We have visited many wineries for the first time this year.

One of my favorite was Bushwacker Bend Winery in Glasgow in a milling town over looking the Missouri River. We had such a pleasant time chatting with the owners, touring their wine-making facility and sipping their splendid Chardonell on the deck watching the river flow.


Speaking of views, this was the first year I got to experience the overwhelming beauty of Vance Vineyard & Winery in Fredricktown. After 30 minutes of country road, you pull up to what looks like a large display house with a perfect pond, landscaping, and patio. Inside the area is massive and open, perfect for a wedding or party. The grand bar samples their large variety of wines, and you can't help but thinking, "I wish I lived here!"


Michael has a couple wineries that really made a lasting impression this year, they were Ladoga Ridge Winery and West Winery in Macon, MO.

Ladoga Ridge Winery is a family owned establishment that was first started by Galen and Leinda Haddock.  Located in Smithville, MO, Ladoga Ridge Winery offers visitors the feel of a winery in the countryside with the convenience of being quite close to civilization!  Find yourself impressed by one of their many wines that are made, on site, by Galen himself.  Time and time again during our visit we were assured that the utmost care is taken with the crafting of every single bottle of wine that Ladoga Ridge Winery produces, and it showed.  Every wine that we tasted was a perfect representation of its varietal.  They even had some blends and fruit wines that were very tasty.

We were disappointed that in Northeast Missouri there are only a few wineries, but the few that we encountered were well worth the drive, especially West Winery in Macon, MO.  Located in the heart of  downtown Macon, West Winery offers its visitors quite an experience through their wine list.  In addition to tasting their many Chambourcin options (which are all very good and give you an idea of how this particular varietal can be transformed from dry to semi-sweet) one is able to tour their wine production facility while enjoying a glass.  West Winery is Missouri's first "urban" winery where they produce their wine completely in an urban setting.  Visitors are able to enjoy a glass in the tasting room or stroll over to the wine making area of the establishment and join in the fun and magic of the grape to wine adventure.

Thursday, September 19, 2013


Fall officially starts Sunday, September 22nd! Leaves are falling, pumpkin lattes are steaming, and the air is brisk. Last year, we gathered a group of friends to celebrate the autumn start in the best way we know how... WINERY HOP! To make this trip more festive we paired our favorite wine trail with apple picking and fall beer tasting. We started our day off at Augusta Brewery Company. I always enjoy their beer sampler, and they also offer 18 local wines if you want to keep it consistent all day. This year we highly suggest checking out the Augusta Bottoms Beer Fest  on October 5th. We have never been, but we have heard great reviews from our friends in our home-brew club, The Brewminati. Over 20 microbreweries will be sampling including Crown Valley Brewing. Tickets are on sale now, and you're sure to find a plethora of Oktoberfest and Pumpkin beers to quench your fall thirsts!


The next stop on our #FallingForFall day was Mount Pleasant Winery to get some Missouri wine is us! As Wine Club members we were able to get free tastings for ourselves and our friends which is always a great perk of the club. After tasting, we found a sunny spot on the hillside to enjoy a couple bottles and take in the view of the beautiful Augusta landscape. 


If you have never been apple picking, I highly suggest you make a trip this fall to my personal favorite, Centennial Farms. I have been visiting this farm since I was a child, and it never disappoints. We rode the tractor back to  the orchard where we had our pick 24 varieties of apple to pick from. The pure pleasure of picking an apple straight off the tree and taking a bit, easily makes Fall my favorite season. Aside from purchasing apples you pick, they also sell honey, apple butter, relishes and other homegrown options. 


We had to end on a 'wine note', so we heading to Montelle Winery to finish our epic Autumn Adventure. We sipped on Vidal Icewine and grooved to the music of the live band. Our Fall Winery Hop was complete, and we are already planning another one for this Fall. Follow our itinerary or make your own plan to get out there and enjoy the Fall season. If you would like us to create a custom trip just for you, we would love to help and can provide insight into most winery regions in Missouri. Contact us here