This Month's Contest
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One of Ohio’s most picturesque locations exists east of Cleveland along the I 90 Corridor in Lake and Ashtabula Counties. Sparkling lake waters, rolling lush vineyards, deep river gorges with spectacular fall foliage and quiet back roads-less-traveled offer year round appeal for wine lovers or anyone seeking an idyllic escape from a hectic world.
The region is easy to explore. Along the ‘Wines and Vines’ trail, travelers enjoy picturesque view sheds while they discover more than 25 unique, family owned wineries, all with a 45 minute loop. Beyond casual touring, early each winter the Chocolate-is-for- Lover trail matches locally produced confections with regional wines. Spring time brings the Wine-N-Bloom flower focused event and the holiday Tannenbaum Trail begins in late November. Ample lodging, upscale amenities at the Lodge and Conference Center in Geneva, many chain hotels and beds and breakfasts dot the area. A dozen livery services encourage safe travels.
For those seeking more of the ‘locavore’ movement, Geneva is home to Windows on Pairings, Ohio’s Wine and Culinary Experience where cooking classes, Ohio grown food stuffs, wine tastings and education programming of all-things- culinary attract thousands annually. To meet its educational goals, Pairings collaborates with Kent State Ashtabula, Ohio’s only university offering a 2 year wine industry related degree. In season, farmers’ markets, roadside fruit and vegetable stands, apple farms and many other back to the soil businesses abound.
The vintners of the Grand River Valley and those along the lake’s south shore sit amid the largest concentration of vineyards in Ohio. In the Federally recognized GRV, a tiny strip of land, just 22 miles long and 4 miles wide, about 70 of all winegrapes grown in the state find exceptional soil conditions, temperatures moderated by the influences of Lake Erie, a deep gorge valley assuring good drainage and a long growing season to mature the myriad of cool climate, world renowned varietals grown there. Some wineries have broadened their appeal by opening a craft brewery and even a craft distillery.
The most widely planted variety is Riesling, a Germanic style grape producing lovely, well balanced wines ranging from crisp, dry styles to ones with a hint of sweetness in the finish. While some Canifornia-esque grapes cannot grow in the valley, vintners there have won national, and even international acclaim for their Chardonnays, Pinot Grigios, Pinot Noirs, Cabernet Francs and Gewurztraminers, all ‘cool climate’ grapes that thrive in the valley’s ‘terroir.’
Beyond those classic varieties, French hybrids like Chambourcin, Seyval and Vidal Blanc yield easy to enjoy every day table wines. Vidal Blanc is also the primary fruit used in the luscious dessert ice wines, a unique and costly style which can be grown in only a handful of places on the globe. And the region still supports hundreds of acres of the native Catawbas and Concords which yield soft and supple wines that appeal so very many palates.
We invite you to visit, explore, taste and enjoy.
Learn more at www.Ohiowines.org
Package: $820 value
- 2 overnights at the Lodge at Geneva [Sunday through Friday] $350 value
- Dinner for two at the Ferrante Winery and Ristorante $75 value
- Dinner for two at the Lakehouse Inn, Winery and Restaurant $100 value
- Four hour wine tour and transportation for 2 to four or five wineries by Barrels and Bridges Winery Tour $90 value
- Wine Palate Training and wine tasting at Pairings, Ohio’s Wine and Culinary Experience Value $30
- VIP wine tastings and tours at Debonne Vineyards, Madison and St. Joseph Vineyard, Madison Value $50
- VIP tasting and tour at the Red Eagle Distillery, Geneva Value $25
- Wine palate training for two at Pairings, Ohio’s Wine and Culinary Experience in Geneva Value $30
- Gift basket of Ohio wine related products: Value $100
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