I live in the great state of Texas and my daughter lives in the great Commonwealth of Kentucky. I have just returned form a short visiting vacation at my daughter’s house in Kentucky.
My daughter owns and operates a vineyard where she grows a variety of grapes for fine wine making. She suggested that we tour one of the wineries that purchase her grapes for wine making, so we did. I’m not as young as I used to be and all this going and walking was beginning to take its toll on me, but I wanted to see the wine making process. I’m a teetotaler, go figure.
We visited Elk Creek Vineyards and Winery in Owenton, Kentucky. Elk Creek Vineyards and Winery is the largest winery in the Commonwealth of Kentucky. I was surprised at how small the largest winery is. The grapes are mechanically crushed and yeast and some other strange product is added to the mushed up grapes to begin the fermentation process. The juice is then poured into and stored in large stainless steel containers for a short period of time (don’t remember how long) before it is transferred into oak barrels for the remainder of the fermentation process. This is usually anywhere from 9 months to a year (I think. I really don't remember exactly and I'm the one who doesn't drink.). The oak barrels are stored in a cave like black room because the sun light affects the fermentation process. The wine is then sent to the bottling room where it is automatically poured into the bottles and the synthetic corks are added for sealing and the labels are put on the bottles. The old “real” cork seals are not used any more, unless requested.
Elk Creek Vineyards and Winery not only offers award winning wines that are produced on-site they also have a Bed and Breakfast and a beautiful amphitheater for outdoor entertainment during the Spring and Summer months. They schedule top entertainers for these events and the events draw crowds from all across the Commonwealth as well as from other states.
By the time we left, with purchased wine in hand (my children, I’m still a teetotaler), I was the only one needing assistance to get back into the car, these old bones ain’t what they used to be. LOL The trip was delightful and the owner of the winery was there and he paid special attention to us. I felt special even if I didn’t drink any of his wine. LOL
Below are a few pictures from my vacation wine tour.
Bed Breakfast up on the top of the hill.
Ampi-theater where many outdoor events are held, drawing crowds from all over.
My daughters vineyard.
My son, daughter-in-law and daughter.
My son and daughter-in-law
Pictures from inside the winery. The last two were taken in the cave room.