Friday, April 27, 2012

2012 March Madness prize winners

We are pleased to announce the list of prize winners for this year's March Madness event. Please excuse any misspellings of names as we were trying to read handwriting on the entry slips.Your prize will be mailed to you within the next two weeks.

Congratulations to everyone who won and thanks for attending March Madness on the Lehigh Valley Wine Trail!

  • Hawk Mountain Bed & Breakfast, Kempton – Jen Mitchell
  • Long Swamp Bed & Breakfast, Mertztown – Jamie Koch
  • Camillo’s Italian Restaurant, Kutztown – Deb Cumello
  • Camillo’s Italian Restaurant, Kutztown – Kellie Clay
  • Antelao Restaurant, Delaware Water Gap – Liam Russell
  • MultiSport Fitness, Mount Bethel and Bethlehem   – Beverly Tannenbaum
  • MultiSport Fitness, Mount Bethel and Bethlehem – Ann Centanni
  • MultiSport Fitness, Mount Bethel and Bethlehem – Christina Michener
  • Main Street Inn Bed & Breakfast, Kutztown – John Trevis
  • Amore Greenhouse, Nazareth – Steve Seaman
  • Amore Greenhouse, Nazareth – Gina Mustacchia
  • Amore Greenhouse, Nazareth – Ray Vanderhoff
  • Moya Restaurant, Jim Thorpe – Carol Young
  • Cherry’s Sunset Diner, Kresgeville – Lauren Behie
  • Cab Frye’s Restaurant, Palm – Pat Block
  • Cab Frye’s Restaurant, Palm - Donna Wojciechowski
  • Hops Fogelsville Hotel, Fogelsville – Becky Stone
  • Hops Fogelsville Hotel, Fogelsville – Wayne Jones
  • Hops Fogelsville Hotel, Fogelsville – Jennifer Fishee
  • Hops Fogelsville Hotel, Fogelsville – Alicia Seaman
  • Curious Goods at the Bake Oven Inn, Germansville – Tara Brunner
  • Pampered Chef – Becky Wagner
  • Grapes Alive Glassware – Lydia Cochran
  • Premise Maid Candies, Breinigsville – Kevin Gillespie
  • Mr. Bill’s Poultry Market, Allentown – Kristina Williams
  • Bear Creek Mountain Resort & Conference Center, Macungie – Paulette Williams
  • Holiday Inn Conference Center, Breinigsville – Keith Huff
  • Holiday Inn Conference Center, Breinigsville – Aliceann Gogel
  • Blue Mountain Summit Bed & Breakfast, Andreas – Diandra Berry

Thursday, April 26, 2012

Wine and song at Lehigh Valley wineries

Enjoy live music with your wine tasting? Then check out the live music this spring and summer at the following Lehigh Valley Wine Trail wineries:

Clover Hill - Music & Tapas on the Patio: May 25, June 10, August 12 - 1 - 4 p.m. Chef Nathan Grube will serve small tapas plates available for $6 each, and musician Craig Thatcher will provide entertainment.

Blue Mountain - Sunday Blues is a tradition at this winery. A $5 admission fee gets you live music on the enclosed deck and a wine tasting. But due to the popularity of this weekly feature, it's recommended that customers call in advance to reserve a table as it often fills up and sells out! There are different musicians each week, so come back often to hear someone new! Small plates of cheese and crackers are also available for purchase.

Pinnacle Ridge - The winery's 2012 Summer Concert Series kicks off in June and runs through October. Each month it features a different blues, bluegrass, jazz or rock band that performs in the barn. Kick back and relax this summer at the winery with great tunes, food and a glass of wine!

Vynecrest - Enjoy free live music every Saturday from 1:30 - 4:30 p.m. in the Vyneskeller, and Jazz Sunday on the last Sunday of every month. It will feature low-keyed smooth jazz also in the Vyneskeller from 1:30-4:30 p.m. Food is available for purchase from a light menu. Paired with a glass of wine, it's the perfect way to spend a lazy Sunday afternoon.

Tuesday, April 17, 2012

Connect with our wineries on Facebook and Twitter

We're excited that our wineries are embracing social media. All eight Wine Trail members are now on Facebook and would love to have you "Like" them. Here are links to their pages:
In addition, three of our wineries are also active on Twitter. Please give them a follow.
And just in case you haven't already connected with the Lehigh Valley Wine Trail via social media yet, here are links to our various accounts:

Friday, April 13, 2012

Vynecrest Winery announces new releases and live music lineup

The vineyard is coming back to life after a mild winter. It's a great time of year to sit on the Vyneskeller patio and listen to live music which we have in the Vyneskeller every Saturday and Jazz Sunday the last Sunday of every month.

Vynecrest on Main, our new tasting room in Kutztown, is up and running. Thank you to all of you who have come in to say hello and welcomed us to the Kutztown community. If you have not had a chance to visit the new store, come on out and enjoy a glass of wine and the best view in Kutztown.

The 2011 wines are rolling out and they have to be tasted to be believed. One of the most exciting things about wine is how the same wine can change from one vintage to the next. Our most recent releases are:
  • Pinot Grigio
  • Chardonnay
  • Vynecrest White
  • Pinot Noir
  • Chambourcin
April specials
  • Wine of the Month - Riesling - additional 10% off (at winery only, not to be combined with other discounts)
  • Three Pack of the Month - 3 Niagara for $25 (can be combined with other discounts, so if you buy a case, the wine of the month is 20% off.)
Upcoming Events

April 14 - Live music in the Vyneskeller, Jake Kaligis, 1:30-4:30 pm
April 14 & 15 - Bear Creek Spring Wine & Food Festival,  1-5 pm both days
April 21 - Live music in the Vyneskeller - Connie Edinger, 1:30-4:30 pm
April 28 - Live music in the Vyneskeller - Mike Pilgermayer, 1:30-4:30 pm
April 29 - Jazz Sunday, Live Jazz music in the Vyneskeller with Andy & Dan 1:30-43 0pm
May 5 - Live music in the Vyneskeller, Jake Kaligis, 1:30-4:30 pm
May 12 - Live music in the Vyneskeller, The Large Flowerheads acoustic trio, 1:30-4:30 pm
May 19 - Taste of Kutztown, 3-8 pm

May 19 & 20 - Lehigh Valley Wine Trail Weekend - Wine in Bloom

We will be releasing our 2011 vintage of Lemberger, made from our estate-grown red vinifera grapes. We will be pairing it with Amish farmstead Goot Essa woodsmoked cheddar cheese. There will be a winemaker’s tour both Saturday and Sunday of the vineyard and wine cellar at 1 p.m. On Saturday, there will be live music 1:30-4:30 p.m. by Art’s Acoustic Oldies in our Vyneskeller Wine Bar. Open to the public with no charge.

In The Vineyard

The pruning is done and the buds are starting to open up. It is nice to see the vineyard come back to life in the spring. Over the next few weeks we will be planting another two acres of grapes and keeping our fingers crossed for no late-spring freezes.

Tuesday, April 10, 2012

Live music, new releases and wine specials from Blue Mountain Vineyards

New releases

2011 Vidal Blanc
There are hints of green apple on the nose before giving way to a rich burst of pineapple.

2011 Chardonnay
This unoaked fruit forward wine exhibits flavor of pear, citrus and green apple, leaving a lasting palette impression.

April specials

$1 off 2004 Chambourcin
$1 off Mountain Spice

Sunday Blues schedule

04/15 ~ Scott Marshall & The Hillbilly Souls
04/22 ~ Wow Brothers (Come wish Davey a Happy Birthday!)
04/29 ~ Jake Kaligis & Mike Rauscher's Dynamic Duo

Please call or email for reservations. $5 admission includes a wine tasting. If reservations are made, we ask that you arrive no later than 2:15 p.m.    

Festival season is here!

April 14 & 15 ~ Bear Creek Food & Wine Festival (Macungie)
April 21 ~ Flavor Festival (Phoenixville)
April 27 ~ ARCH Annual Wine Tasting & Auction (at the Winery)
May 5 ~ Wings & Wine Fest (Tunkhannock)

Thursday, April 5, 2012

Spring arrives at Clover Hill Winery

Bud Burst in the Vineyard
Signs of life are clearly visible in the vineyards. The buds are near ready to burst, the grass is green, the blue birds have returned, and we are rejoicing with a glass of wine this spring. That is one of the most exciting things about growing grapes; every spring we are reminded that we have another chance to grow a little better grape. Keep your fingers crossed for a picture perfect grape growing year in Pennsylvania. 

Events are also overflowing with life at Clover Hill Vineyards & Winery. We hope you find a great reason to visit us whether it is for a tour, music or just a quiet afternoon with a glass of wine on the patio. Be our guest and pack a picnic lunch and enjoy a glass of wine with us any day of the week.

Thank you for choosing to drink local and supporting Clover Hill Vineyards & Winery. We are honored that Clover Hill wine graces your table this spring, Easter, or Passover.

Owner's Selection - Cayuga White
If you could bottle the taste of spring it might just taste like Cayuga White! This wine expresses fresh, fruity flavors of mango, melon and ruby grapefruit. A semi-sweet finish is best served chilled sitting outside with good company. Here are some of our favorite recipes to go with Cayuga White!

Enjoy a 10% discount on Cayuga White the entire month of April. Receive a 20% discount on the Owner's Selection when included with case purchases.

A Clover Hill Wine & Martin Guitar Tasting
Saturday, May 19 – 1 p.m. & 3:30 p.m.
Reservations required

Clover Hill Vineyards & Winery
9850 Newtown Road
Breinigsville, PA 18031

Experience the vineyard in bloom with a glass of wine and the strum of a guitar. On Saturday, May 19, Clover Hill will partner with Martin & Company to present “A Clover Hill Wine & Martin Guitar Tasting.”

Dick Boak, Martin Guitar’s expert, along with guitarist Craig Thatcher, will offer an interactive and informative afternoon of music, guitars, history, wine and fun. The day will be split into two presentations; 1 p.m. and 3:30 p.m. While the presentations are free, reservations are required and seating is limited.

In addition to these presentations Craig Thatcher will play the guitar on our patio beginning at noon until the first presentation begins and then again at the conclusion of the second presentation for a short time. Craig’s performance on the patio is open to all at no charge.

To reserve your seat, or for more information, call 610-395-2468 or email

Tuesday, April 3, 2012

What a spring frost means for local vineyards

This article was featured in the April edition of the Pinnacle Ridge Winery e-newsletter.

Spring has sprung - early! A prolonged stretch of unusually warm weather in March has sent a message to many plants that it is time to grow. This early warm weather launches the growing season earlier than normal which means (everything else being equal) we should have an earlier harvest than normal. Years with an early harvest are generally better years as the fruit has more time to hang and get fully ripe in warmer weather. It tends to be especially helpful in getting the late red varieties fully ripe. However, there is one caveat that can not be overlooked - the danger that Mr. Jack Frost will visit while tender green shoots are exposed.

In the last 20 years of growing grapes, we have observed killing frosts as late as May 20. It is not normal to have frost that late but it does happen. The first week or two in May would generally be regarded as the last frost date. So what happens to the vines in this situation?  Like most things it is not as simple as it seems.

Typical spring frosts in our area occur on very clear, cloudless nights. The absence of clouds allows the warmer air to move up into the atmosphere while the colder (more dense) air sinks to low spots. Naturally any low spots in a vineyard are prone to freezing before higher spots. So within a vineyard site there will be  areas that are colder than others.

The other variable is the level of exposure of the new shoots on the vine. Closed buds on a vine can withstand cold weather down to zero degrees or lower. As the root systems awaken in the spring and push sap into the vine. the cold hardiness of the buds diminishes. As the bud swells and starts to open it becomes more and more susceptible to frost/freeze injury. A swollen bud can withstand temperatures down to around 25 degrees whereas new shoots with several leaves showing will suffer injury at 30 degrees.

Different varieties push their shoots at different times and not all shoots push at exactly the same time. Our earliest varieties are our Pinot Noir and Chardonnay. The shoots on these varieties push weeks earlier than Cabernet Sauvignon or Chambourcin. So during a frost/freeze event the level of damage depends on location in the vineyard and on the progress of shoot development on the different varieties. Frost injury usually ends up hitting one or two varieties harder than others and mainly in lower, colder locations in the vineyard.

Once a shoot has been injured the vines will push secondary or tertiary shoots. On most varieties of vines these shoots will not carry much fruit (if any) but they do allow the vine to produce leaves which allows photosynthesis to occur and the plant to survive. So frost doesn't generally kill plants but does reduce the
yield of grapes. Our buds in the Chardonnay have started to swell and we will most likely have bud break in the first days of April. This is exactly what happened in 2010.

So keep your fingers crossed that we don't have any of those clear, cold nights for the rest of April!