Serenity Among the Vines
Spring is a great time to get outside and visit the many area wineries. Mark your calendar for these upcoming happenings…
By Laurie Pellichero
Hopewell Valley Vineyards
46 Yard Road, Pennington
Hopewell Valley Vineyards, led by proprietors Sergio and Violetta Neri, is dedicated to the creation of handcrafted wines by blending Old World flair with New World style. The vineyards, first planted in 2001, now include 25 acres of grapes under cultivation. Their mission is to provide a relaxing, quaint, and beautiful environment where one can experience award-winning wines and enjoy the company of friends.
Events at Hopewell Valley Vineyards include Music & Vino every Friday evening from 5 to 8pm, and every Saturday from 1-4pm and 5-8pm with a variety of live music to enjoy along with artisan brick oven pizza and a light fare menu. Wines are available by the glass or bottle. Upcoming Friday acts include Catmoondaddy on April 15, Deb & Mike on April 22, and Karen Payne on April 29. The Saturday 1-4pm concerts include Winery Catz on April 16, Mixtape Mojo on April 22, and Silent Q on April 30. The Saturday evening concerts will feature Mike Herz Duo on April 16, Rainbow Fresh on April 23, and Craig Leach Group on April 30. Live music is also presented on Sundays from 1:30-4:30pm, including Blue Jersey Band on April 17, HVV Jazz Band on April 24, and Mark Feingold Group on May 1. See the website for other upcoming acts and events.
Winery hours are Monday through Thursday 11am to 3pm, Friday and Saturday 12 to 8:30pm, and Sunday 12 to 5pm.
85 Archertown Road, New Egypt
Local, authentic, and sustainable is the philosophy at Laurita Winery, which gets its name from the first names of owners Randy Johnson’s and Ray Shea’s mothers, Laura and Rita. At Laurita, production focuses on making wine from grapes that are recognized and accepted worldwide, concentrating on the vinifera, the classic European noble varieties.
The winery features 40 cultivated acres of vineyards and 200 acres of woodlands, meadows, and pastures, and produces 14,000 to 16,000 cases of wine that are exclusive to the winery. Its main structure is built mostly from recycled and reclaimed materials, with the skeleton of the building formed through the merging of two 150-year-old barns that had been marked for demolition. Sharing the property with the winery are the Inn at Laurita Winery and Laurita Equestrian Center.
Laurita Winery is a regional destination for a wide variety of happenings including its popular Food Truck Festivals. April events include an Easter Brunch on April 17, Wine and Bundt Cakes on April 21 from 7-9pm, BaconFest 2022 Food Truck Festival on April 23 and 24, and Awesome ’80s Dance Party on April 30 from 7 to 11pm. Winery hours are based on scheduled events, which are held Thursday through Sunday.
Old York Cellars
80 Old York Road, Ringoes
Featuring scenic views of the Sourland Mountain range and set amidst some of the oldest vineyards in New Jersey, Old York Cellars is a working farm that offers a full selection of award-winning wines and a special experience both inside and outside the tasting room. It hosts a variety of special events, fundraising programs, live music, comedy nights, tasting experiences, and an exclusive Vintner’s Club. A Winery Food Menu is also available. Old York Cellars is open Wednesday and Thursday 12 to 5pm, Friday and Saturday 12 to 7pm, and Sunday 12 to 6pm.
Spring events include the Friday Night Wine and Music Series from 6 to 9pm with Ed Wall on April 22, Russell Norkevich on April 29, and Allan Willcockson on May 6. The Spring Wine and Music Series on Saturdays and Sundays from 12 to 6:30pm will feature Kyle Campbell and Chaplin Fortunato on April 23, Jerry Steele and Ralph James on April 24, George Becker and Mark Mayer on April 30, and Erin McAndrew and Russell Norkevich on May 1.
Those who enjoy comedy can visit on April 23 for Wine and Comedy Night at 8pm (doors open at 7pm) featuring Buddy Fitzpatrick and Vince Valentine. Joe Bronzi and Kevin Israel will provide the laughs on May 7, and Marion Grodin and Brendon Donegan are on tap for May 21.
Many Winery Experiences are also available, including the Guided Wine Tasting; Wine, Charcuterie, and Chocolate; Chef Jose’s Six-Course Pairing Experience; and Chef Jose’s Wine and Tapas Experience. Check the website for times and details.
Terhune Orchards Vineyard and Winery
330 Cold Soil Road, Princeton
Owned and operated by Pam and Gary Mount and their daughters Tannwen Mount and Reuwai Hanewald, Terhune Orchards Vineyard and Winery offers an award-winning selection of dry white wines, off-dry white wines, dry red wines, semi-sweet wines, and fruit wines crafted from their own vineyards and orchards.
Terhune Orchards is one of the few operating family farms in New Jersey to also have a winery and tasting room. The winery, open Saturday and Sunday from 12 to 5pm, is in the open-air setting of a 100-year-old historic apple orchard, and the Wine Barn houses state-of-the-art wine tanks, a wine lab, and bottling line. Those visiting for tastings can also enjoy pick-your-own and the farmyard activities as well as the farm store full of fresh fruits and vegetables, baked goods, and more. Bottles are also available at the farm store seven days a week.
In addition to wine tastings, Terhune hosts a Weekend Winery Music Series on Saturdays and Sundays from 12 to 5pm. Sunset Sips and Sounds, also with live music, is on Fridays from 5 to 8pm beginning June 3.
Kite Day Weekend is April 30 and May 1 from 10am to 5pm each day. Mother’s Day Wine Trail Weekend is May 7 and 8, 12 to 5pm, with free wine tastings for moms. Father’s Day Winery Weekend is June 18 and 19, 12 to 5pm, with free wine tastings for dads. One can also visit the winery at the Firefly Festival on Sunday, June 26 from 4 to 9pm.
9 Rocktown Road, Ringoes
Unionville Vineyards rests on 89 acres of preserved farmland in Hunterdon County. The winery is comprised of six estate vineyards spread over three counties, allowing for unique wines to be crafted from fruit grown in the varying terroir of central and northern New Jersey. Its winemakers craft acid-driven, fruit-forward, aromatic wines, focusing on Burgundy and Rhone varieties such as Chardonnay, Syrah, Pinot Noir, and Viognier. Wines by the bottle or glass can be enjoyed on the picnic grounds from 12 to 5pm daily.
Tastings are by appointment only for $20 per person Friday through Monday at 12, 2, and 4pm. Upcoming events include the Vineyard Pig Roast on Friday, April 29 on the tented patio with live bluegrass, open wine bar, and a pig roast dinner; $85/$72 for Club members. Hunterdon Mistral Series Release Weekend is on May 14 and 15 with live music, catered lunches by the Blawenburg Bistro, and the release of Unionville’s Rhone-inspired red, white, and rosé wines. Tastings are $20 per person. Visit the website for further details.
Working Dog Winery
610 Perrineville Road, Hightstown
Located in eastern Mercer County, Working Dog Winery was established by a group of friends in 2001, and opened to the public in 2003. Starting with three acres of Cabernet Franc and Chardonnay, it now features 24 acres of grapes under cultivation.
The winery is open on Friday from 12 to 6pm and Saturday and Sunday from 11am to 6pm year-round. Live music is hosted every Saturday and Sunday from 1 to 5pm. Food trucks are often on site as well. Williamsboy will perform on April 23, and Chris Swatt is on April 24. The Legends Grille food truck will be there both days. Vinny (of Backbeat) is scheduled to perform on April 30. Check the website for more events as they are added to the calendar.
Crossing Vineyards and Winery
1853 Wrightstown Road, Newtown, Pa.
215.493.6500 | crossingvineyards.com
A dozen different grape varietals are grown on the 20-acre Crossing Vineyards and Winery in Bucks County. Technology and tradition co-exist in the state-of-the-art winery founded in 2000 by the Carroll family. Its grounds are located on a 200-acre estate less than a mile from where George Washington crossed the Delaware in 1776.
Classic, Group, and Celebration Wine Tastings are available, and the winery offers many events throughout the year including food and wine pairings, wine classes, holiday themed events, and the Summer Wine and Music Series. Live music includes Randy Burrows on April 23, Bill Thomas on April 24, and Bunny Barnes on May 1. All performances are from 2 to 6pm.
Pairing Wine and Chocolate is offered on April 21 at 7pm and the Spring Wine and Food Festival is May 21 from 12-5pm. The 2022 Summer Wine and Music Series kicks off on June 3 with The Fabulous Greaseband at 7pm.
Winery hours are 12 to 6pm daily, with extended hours on Thursdays and Saturdays in the summer.
Event dates and times subject to change. See websites for full details.