We planted our vineyard ourselves in 2007. It was a family affair with Bryant's parents and our 2 and 5 year old sons.There was a terrible drought that summer that caused us to nurse our baby vinelings with a soaker hose up and down each row every day. Our Cynthianas rewarded us eventually by becoming extremely fruitful vines. Our 2016 harvest netted us almost 10,000 pounds per acre on our half acre vineyard! Bean's Creek Winery in Manchester buys our grapes to make their Cynthiana wine, some red blends, and their Apropos....a luscious port made by aging red wine in barrels from Pritchard's Rum Distillery in Kelso!
We would not recommend growing grapes to anyone. It is time consuming to spray, prune, weed and prune some more. Birds, deer, wild turkeys and almost every 4-legged varmint around want your grapes more than you do! *But* the vineyard is beautiful in any season and one of the farm highlights of the year is the annual grape harvest party, usually held around the second week in September. We gather up friends and neighbors and Bryant smokes his famous BBQ to serve during the two day harvest full of food, wine, laughter, and hard work. We get by with a little help from our friends!
We experimented with Chardonnel, Traminette, Cabernet Sauvignon and Chardonney, thinking our hilltop location might be good for these varieties that don't normally grow well in our region. We were wrong!