Visit Yadkin Valley Wineries
North Carolina’s Yadkin Valley Wineries include the vineyards of Buck Shoals, Dobbins Creek, Laurel Gray, Shadow Springs in the “Vineyards of Swan Creek.”
Winemaking is relatively new for North Carolina’s Yadkin Valley wineries, but the Raffaldini family has more than 600 years of experience. Raffaldini Vineyard is a member of the Vineyards of Swan Creek Association that also includes 4 other family-owned wineries: Buck Shoals, Dobbins Creek, Laurel Gray, and Shadow Springs.
The Yadkin Valley wineries are an easy drive from Charlotte, the Triad, and Wilkesboro and Boone for those who wish to visit the region for wine tasting tours.
For those who might wish to make “an event” of their wine tasting tour of the Yadkin Valley, or for those who prefer having a designated driver, a limo service in nearby Mount Airy, N.C., has a wine tour package.
The valley grows vinifera wine grapes and produces both French and Italian wine varieties as well as some “unique local wines,” the website states.
The Swan Creek wineries hold combined events throughout the year. The spring wine release is the first weekend in May; an herb festival is the last weekend in July; a harvest festival is held the second weekend in October, and a holiday open house the first weekend in December.
Dobbins Creek Vineyard
The Dobbins Creek Vineyard offers a 2,000 square foot log tasting room with a stone-covered fireplace for visitors who arrive for a wine tasting. Travelers are encouraged to sit on the 60-foot long porch and take in the 100-mile view of the Yadkin Valley.
“On most clear days you can see the buildings of Winston Salem about 43 miles to the East. On a very clear day, you can see the top of Grandfather Mountain about 73 miles to the West, and on all days you can enjoy the view of the vineyard and beyond looking South,” the Swan Creek website states.
The first vines were planted in 2002.
Dobbins Creek produces Riesling, Chardonnay (both casked and stainless), Merlot, Hermetic Mountain Red, and Hermetic Mountain Blush wines.
Dobbin Creek Vineyards is located at 4430 Vineyard View Lane, Hamptonville. The telephone number is (336) 468-4770.
Laurel Gray Vineyards
The boutique winery Laurel Gray Vineyards is on the property that has been in Benny Myers’ family for 10 generations since his ancestor arrived from England in 1773, information from the vineyard states.
Benny and Kim Myers and children, Ashley Laurel and Taylor Gray, put in the first grapes in 2000 and began renovating buildings on the farm.
A milking parlor was transformed into the tasting room and gift shop.
Laurel Gray produces only estate-grown French wines: barrel-fermented Chardonnay, Cabernet Sauvignon, Viognier, and Pinot Gris as well as a number of blends.
It was awarded the 2009 Winegrowers of Excellence designation.
The winery is open from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. Wednesday through Saturday and from 1 to 5 p.m. on Sunday. Tours are conducted at 2 p.m. and 4 p.m. It is closed during the month of January.
Laurel Gray Vineyards is located at 5726 Old Highway 421, Hamptonville, NC 27020. The telephone number is (336) 468-9463.
Old North State Winery & Brewery
Since Mount Airy is so well-known as Andy Griffith’s hometown, there is plenty for visitors to do in the downtown area that relates to the TV and movie actor, but there are numerous other activities for the visitors, including the Old-time Music Heritage Hall, which must be dear to the actor’s heart.
Located in a renovated 1890s mercantile building at 308 N. Main Street, Mount Airy, the Old North State Winery & Brewery offers good wines and delicious, well-presented food.
The vineyards are located off-site on farms that have been in the families for generations.
The winery offers a “Premier Wine Tasting” of all 14 of its wines for $7, a “Dry Wine Tasting” of its dry wines for $4, and A “Semi-Sweet & Sweet Wine Tasting” for $4.
Hours are 11 a.m. to 6 p.m. Monday through Wednesday, 11 a.m. to 9 p.m. Thursday through Saturday and noon to 6 p.m. Sunday.
Wine cellar tours are available. To schedule a tour or special event, call (336) 789-9463.
Raffaldini Vineyards brings Tuscany to the Yadkin Valley.
For more than 650 years the Raffaldini family has owned the farm in Mantua, Italy, where the classical poet-philosopher Virgil spent his youth.
The Raffaldini family decided to bring its winemaking to the new world. After an exhaustive search for just the right property, they purchased the land near Swan Creek in the Yadkin Valley.
The Raffaldini family heritage is on display in the sunny Italian tasting room, which is decorated with rare paintings and sculptures.
.The founding members of the Raffaldini Vineyards live part-time on the property, according to the Raffaldini website, and they produce Italian wines: Pinot Grigio, Vermentino, Sangiovese, Sangiovese Riserva, and Montepulciano as well as a number of blends.
At the 2010 North Carolina State Fair, Raffaldini wines won gold medals for its Oenotria 2008 and its Vermentino 2009 wines, along with 3 silver medals and 2 bronze medals.
The winery is open from 11 a.m. to 5 p.m. Wednesday through Saturday and 1 to 5 p.m. Sunday. Tours are scheduled for 1 and 4 p.m. Wednesday through Sunday.
Raffaldini Vineyards is located at 450 Groce Road, Ronda, NC 28670. The phone number is (336) 835-9463.
Shadow Springs Vineyard
Shadow Springs Vineyard is named for the spring-fed creek, surrounded by trees, and offers a 2-acre lake for a serene, peaceful setting.
The tasting room is large enough not just for tasting, but for weddings, parties, and business meetings.
It produces the wine varietals: Chardonnay, Viognier, Cabernet Franc, Cabernet Sauvignon, and Merlot along with specialty wines.
The winery is open from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. Wednesday through Saturday and from 1 to 5 p.m. on Sunday. It is closed in January.
Shadow Springs produces the varietals of Chardonnay, Seyval Blanc, Cabernet Franc, and Cabernet Sauvignon.
The owners are Chuck and Jamey Johnson. The vineyard is located at 5543 Crater Road, Hamptonville, NC 27202. The telephone number is (336) 468-5000
People who might wish to make an event of a wine tasting tour can contact Park Avenue Limo.
The service has a Limousine Tour and Lunch of the Yadkin Valley Wine Country that lets a chauffeur be the designated driver to 4 or 5 wineries, plus a picnic lunch. The fees for the wine tastings are included in the $125 per person charge, but lunch is not. For more information, call the Sobotta Manor Bed and Breakfast at (336)786-2777 or online at the B&B.
A number of outdoor activities: canoeing, kayaking, hiking, and camping are all available to visitors to the Yadkin Valley who tour Raffaldini, Buck Shoals, Dobbins Creek, Shadow Springs, and Laurel Gray vineyards.
For those who wish to include a meal with their wine tasting, Mr. Mayberry recommends the nearby Twenty-One & Main Restaurant and Wine Bar just down the street.
The Yadkin Valley Wine Trail offers two Main Street wineries for those who wish to participate in part of the Yadkin Valley Wine Tour in the midst of other activities.
Because the Yadkin Valley wineries are growing in popularity, including a trip to a winery on the Yadkin Valley Wine Trail helps complete a visit in the area, and can easily be tucked in between other activities when travelers elect one of the Main Street wineries.