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Cider, Wine & Dine Weekend features 50 events

Grapes ready for harvest at Saint Paul Mountain Vineyards. Grapes ready for harvest at Saint Paul Mountain Vineyards.

More than a dozen venues will offer tastings, tours, new releases, picnics, pairing dinners, live music and vineyard hikes during the three-day Cider, Wine & Dine Weekend April 21-23.

Approximately 50 events take place throughout the weekend including dining, dancing and discovering new delights.

“It’s fun to see all of these local, craft producers come together for a weekend of events,” said Michelle Owens, executive director of Visit Hendersonville, the event sponsor. “Each one does an excellent job on its own, but when they pair their beverages with local foods, local bands playing music and other outdoor activities, it elevates the experience for visitors.”
The weekend is designed to encourage patrons to get out to the vineyards, orchards and tasting rooms, many located in the Blue Ridge countryside, and see where these wines and ciders begin their journey from field to bottle. Participating wineries are part of the Crest of the Blue Ridge AVA, North Carolina’s newest wine region. The cideries draw on decades of apple-growing heritage and a bounty of fresh fruit from area orchards.
Souther Williams Vineyard, which celebrates its one-year anniversary this spring, hosts hike-and-sip tours throughout the day on Friday, April 21. Guests traverse the N.C. Bicentennial Farm, which has been in owner Ken Parker’s family since 1800, and hear how he transitioned the property from traditional agricultural crops into a vineyard, all while sampling five different wines.
Marked Tree Vineyard will serve a savory vintner’s dinner with sunset views Friday evening featuring four courses, each paired with a Marked Tree wine produced from meticulously tended European vinifera and French-American hybrid grapevines in surrounding vineyards.
On Saturday, visitors can be among the first to see Saint Paul Mountain Vineyards’ new on-site winery and taste wines straight from the barrel. Across the road, folks can enjoy live music while sipping dry, European-style ciders and overlooking a hillside orchard at Appalachian Ridge Artisan Hard Cider.
Sunday’s finale at Point Lookout Vineyards features a Celtic band and the opportunity to taste a variety of meads and wines at the mountaintop tasting room.
Events are both free and ticketed. For a full schedule and weekend lodging options, visit VisitHendersonvilleNC.org/cider-wine-dine-weekend or call 828-693-9708.