Ohio may not be the first place the average American's mind goes when they think of wine, but it might be surprising to learn that Ohio is a wine-lover's treasure trove of hidden gem wineries. So if you're always complaining that there are no good vineyards in Ohio, stop whining and start wining.
The property for the Rainbow Hills Winery was purchased in 1985 and included an original 1831 log cabin. The owners starting planting their vineyard and built a tasting room, and opened their doors in 1988. They had the log cabin lifted and moved to become the cornerstone of their bed and breakfast where visitors can stay, relax by the fireplace, enjoy a vast art collection, and enjoy a glass (or bottle) of delicious wine.
Laurentia is a relatively new winery, just opening in 2015, but they make up for it with rustic charm, delicious wines, and a style all their own. The winery's design takes inspiration from the owner's log cabin, and was built to feel like you're being invited into a person's home for wine rather than a sterile, emotionless corporate building. Come for a public tour and tasting, or book a private event.
Harpersfield Vineyard offers vineyard tours in the warmer seasons, and fireside wine tastings when it gets colder. Their family farm winery features local blues artists on the weekends where you can enjoy a perfectly paired plate of cheeses with your wine tasting, or take a glass or bottle for yourself!
The Vermillion Valley Vineyards features rock, jazz, and blues artists that you can enjoy while sipping a glass of wine and enjoying food from their original menu. They host weddings, parties, and meetings and they offer tours that educate on how they craft the perfect wine.
The South River Vineyard was built inside of a century-old abandoned church that originally sat in Shalersville, Ohio. The winery's owner spoke to the church's neighbor and was told that he could have the building for free if he didn't mind dismantling it. Within a week, the owner was making plans to have the church moved, piece by piece, to his site in Geneva, where they have a tasting room, vineyards, a distillery, and some of the best wines in the country!
Valley Vineyards is known all over the nation. They've won dozens of awards since their inception in 1970, and all their wines are grown and distilled right on the estate in Morrow, Ohio. The vineyards lie on soils that used to be plowed by glaciers over thousands of years, which offers numerous benefits to growing premium wine grapes.
The Firelands Winery has been producing premier wines from locally-grown grapes since the original wine cellar was built in 1880, but the winery took a major step forward when it was purchased in 1979 by Bob Gottesman who helped propel the lagging Ohio wine industry into the future. Firelands is the largest winery in Ohio and continues to grow as new customers discover the unique quality, heritage, and flavor of this award-winning wine.
Debonne was the first winery in Ohio to open a micro-brewery and is now the largest estate winery in Ohio. The Debevc family who own the winery had already been winemakers for generations before they opened the Debonne Vineyards in 1972. The Debevc family still oversee operation of the winery to this day, where they offer tours, tastings, or bottles for sale to the public.
Gervasi Vineyard is home to some top-notch wines. Eat at the on-site Tuscan bistro, pairing delicious food with excellent wine. They have a spa and yoga classes where you can relax and enjoy your stay, or play a round of golf at the Glenmoor Jack Nicklaus Signature Golf Course where guests have access to the private country club course.
The Vinkolet Winery produces eight award-winning wines, including a “Best of Show” in the 2015 Ohio Wine Competition. The winery is also situated in stunning rolling hills, giving you a picturesque backdrop for your wine tasting. They have an Italian Grill restaurant on-site, and they're happy to host your wedding, party, reunion, or event.