Tuesday, September 18, 2012

Harvest is under way at Franklin Hill Vineyards

From our grapes to your glass

Harvest has started at Franklin Hill! We brought in four tons of Cayuga and eight tons of Seyval Blanc. The fruit looks very good-ripe and sweet. We are harvesting a little early for the summer since we had some incredible warm days that helped ripen the fruit ahead of schedule.

A shout out to our wonderful pickers! All were eager to help harvest the 2012 vintage. Some of our loyal workers have been with us for over 25 years. Could it be the wine in the end that keeps them coming back?

The winery is still bottling in order to empty all of the tanks in preparation for all of the new juices. Meanwhile, Adam and Scott are busily bringing in the fresh ripened fruit. We're definitely looking forward to a wonderful 2012 Vintage.

Now ship wine from our online Wine Store

Now you can simply send our wine as a gift or easily ship it home! Check out our new Online Wine Store! Click here to buy now.  

2012 Celtic Classic

September 28, 29, 30 in Historic Downtown Bethlehem

The 25th Annual Celtic Classic is presented by Celtic Cultural Alliance, a 501(c)(3) non-profit organization dedicated to preserving and promoting the Celtic heritage through education, musical presentations, and traditional competitions in athletics, piping and dance. The Celtic Classic is a celebration of Celtic culture and heritage." 

Be sure to stop by Franklin Hill Vineyards' Bethlehem Location for a complimentary wine tasting to toast to your favorite Highland Games winner. Visit www.CelticFest.org for more festival info!

Franklin Hill Vineyards store locations

7833 Franklin Hill Road
Bangor, PA 18013

Main St. Commons, 
567 Main St.
Bethlehem, PA 18018

3625 Nazareth Rd.
Easton, PA 18043

2942 Route 611  #101
Tannersville, PA 18372

Friday, September 14, 2012

Vynecrest owners introduce new chocolate bars to pair with their wines

The grapes are starting to come in. We picked our earlier ripening varieties like Pinot Grigio and Traminette over the last two weeks. Next week we will pick our mid-season varieties starting with Pinot Noir. Knock on wood, so far this year has been perfect for grape growing.

September Specials:

Wine of the Month - Pinot Noir, additional 10% off
Three pack of the month - 3 Vynecrest White for $25**
**at winery only, 3 pack can't be combined with other discounts

Upcoming Events:

September 15 - Live music in the Vyneskeller, Jake Kaligis, 1:30-4:30 pm
September 20 - Macungie Farmer's Market, Memorial Park, 4 - 7 pm
September 22 - Live music in the Vyneskeller, Brian Xander, 1:30-4:30 pm
September 27 - Macungie Farmer's Market, Memorial Park, 4 - 7 pm
September 29 - Live music in the Vyneskeller, Arianne, 1:30-4:30 pm
September 30
* Jazz Sunday, Live jazz music in the Vyneskeller with Andy and Dan, 1-4 pm
* Winemaker Tour, 1pm, $5 per person, reservation recommended
*Lehigh Valley Harvest: A Celebration of Local Food and Farms
(Formerly Taste of the Lehigh Valley)
We are a member of Buy Fresh Buy Local Greater Lehigh Valley and will be participating in their Harvest Fest fundraiser at Lutron Electronics in Center Valley on September 30 from 1-4 pm. We have been a part of this event since its inception. Tickets and information call 610-703-6954 or visit www.BuyLocalGreaterLehighValley.org
October 6 - Live music in the Vyneskeller, Billy Bauer, 1:30-4:30 pm

Glass Half Empty
by John Landis

I like chocolate. It started when I was a kid and walked to school and could smell the chocolate being made at the Wilbur Chocolate Company in Lititz, Pa. Every Christmas brought Wilbur buds under the tree.

When Jan and I started Vynecrest in 1989, I always wanted to make a wine to pair with chocolate. In 2004, we made Cherry DiVyne, which is a wine made from Montmorency sour cherries from Peter's Orchard in Adams County. The wine has won a PA Governor's Cup and boy does it pair well with dark chocolate Wilbur buds!

Then Jan got the idea of instead of creating wines to pair with chocolate, why not create chocolates that pair with wines? Hence, we now have five different chocolate bars from Sweet Indulgence by Christina which are designed to pair with specific Vynecrest wines.

Finally a chocolate lover's dream, to be a judge at the chocolate cake contest at the Great Allentown Fair and then to judge cakes at the Pa. State Farm Show in January. I sure do like chocolate!

Wednesday, September 12, 2012

Clover Hill celebrates 27 years in business with a sale!

Clover Hill is turning 27!

Celebrate 27 years of Clover Hill Vineyards and Winery by saving 27% off all wine purchases!

We are proud to be a family-owned and operated vineyards and winery and are appreciative of our staff and customers who have chosen to enjoy Clover Hill wines. Thank you for the many years of fun, support, growth and plenty of wine!

To show our appreciation, from September 13-16 at any Clover Hill location you will receive a 27% discount on your wine purchase. Cheers too many more years of Clover Hill Vineyards & Winery to come.

(*27% is the greatest discount available during the sale days.)

Upcoming events:

Chambourcin Weekend
October 20 and 21; Saturday: 10 am - 5 pm and Sunday: Noon - 5 pm

Join us as we applaud the Chambourcin grape! All the wineries on the Lehigh Valley Wine Trail will celebrate the Chambourcin grape, which is known as the grape of the Lehigh Valley, and one taste of it will have you coming back for more. Chef Nathan Grube will make a return appearance to conduct cooking demonstrations to be paired with our 2009 Chambourcin and Turtle Rock Red (also made with 100% Chambourcin grapes).

Cooking demonstrations will take place at 1, 2, 3 and 4 pm both days. Cheers to the Chambourcin grape! Revisit our website soon for more details on the cooking demonstrations or visit www.lehighvalleywinetrail.com for information on all the wineries on the trail.

Nouveau Weekend
November 17 and 18; Saturday: 10 am - 5 pm and Sunday: Noon - 5 pm

Nouveau Weekend is a time to celebrate the first release from the current year’s harvest. Visit Clover Hill and all the wineries on the Lehigh Valley Wine Trail for this exciting new release wine. Revisit our website soon for our weekend plans or visit www.lehighvalleywinetrail.com for information on all the wineries on the trail.

Thursday, September 6, 2012

Jam at Blues in the Barn this weekend at Pinnacle Ridge


Saturday, September 8 - noon - 7 p.m.
Sunday, September 9 - noon - 7 p.m.

Pinnacle Ridge is celebrating the harvest weekend with a bang! Live music, good eats, great vibes, and wonderful people. Our annual Blues in the Barn event is finally here. Our favorite chef, Ben Underwood, will offer some of his famous savory pulled pork sandwiches for sale as well as other delicious munchies. Wine will be available for purchase both by the bottle and the glass.

On Saturday, The Wallace Brothers will kick off the event at noon and play until 3 p.m.  We had the pleasure of jamming with The Wallace Brothers in July and can't wait to hear their set list this month. The Mighty Manatees will take the stage from 3:30 -7 p.m. We will be staying open later than usual to enjoy the festivities.

We are excited for the return of the James Supra Blues Band who will be performing on Sunday.  We had a blast the first time they played at Pinnacle Ridge back in June and can't wait for this Sunday's rockin' performance. We also welcome the Kelchner Brothers back who have performed at previous Blues in the Barn events.

Summer is nearing an end which also means an end to our summer concert series. We thank all who have joined us the past two months and encourage those who have missed the last shows to swing in for the final performance on Saturday, October 6 from 2 - 5 p.m. with Jack Murray and the Midnight Creeps.


Harvest commenced on Thursday, August 30, much earlier than normal. This is only the second time that we have picked fruit in August in our 20-year harvest history (the other year was 2010). We started with Cayuga for our Blanc de Blanc sparkling wine and we picked Pinot Noir for our Brut Rose on Friday, August 31.

The early harvest was caused by an early bud break in April caused by warm weather in March and April, and also by continued warm weather in June and July (remember those beastly hot days in early July?).  All of this heat promotes the early ripening of the grapes resulting in an early harvest. Early harvests generally provide riper fruit than later harvests with riper flavors, lower acids and higher sugars, with higher alcohol in the finished wine. The wines tend to be softer, fatter and fuller than cooler years. We especially like the red wines from these warmer, earlier harvests (think 2010, 2007 and 2001).

We are set up for a beautiful harvest and now our main concern is weather and pests, most notably birds.  Hurricanes are the single biggest weather concerns. The remnants of Isaac are scheduled to slide through the area in early September so we'll see what that brings and, as of right now, no other serious threats are in the forecast. Keep your fingers crossed, and with a little luck we'll have another fabulous vintage like 2010 or 2007.

Wednesday, September 5, 2012

Stomp grapes like Lucy at Blue Mountain Vineyards

Calling all grape pickers and stompers!

The tentative dates for the annual Blue Mountain Vineyards picking parties are September 22, 23, 29 and 30.

We'll start the day promptly at 9 a.m. with danish and coffee inside the winery. After you're fueled up, you'll go outside and pick grapes for a few hours. To thank you for all your hard work we invite you to stay for a BBQ style lunch on the deck and the grape stomp!

Please wear comfortable clothing and bring gloves. Adults ages 21 and older only (no exceptions). Call or email us to make your reservation.

September Events
  • 9/9 - Large Flowerheads
  • 9/16 - Billy Patrick
  • 9/23 - Scott Marshall and The Hillbilly Souls
  • 9/30 - Jake Kaligis and Mike Rauscher's Dynamic Duo
  • 9/8 - Lehigh Valley Wine Trail's Harvest Weekend - Stop by for a self-guided vineyard tour, music by Rob from 1:30-4:30 p.m. and enjoy homemade kiffles by BabaNonna!
  • 9/9 - Lehigh Valley Wine Trail's Harvest Weekend - Stop by for a self-guided vineyard tour and enjoy homemade kiffles by BabaNonna!
  • 9/15 - Wayne County Wine & Cheese Festival - Wayne County Fairgrounds 11 a.m. - 5 p.m. www.upstatewinecountry.com

Visit us at these farmers markets
  • Bala Cynwyd - Thursdays 2:30 PM - 6:30 PM
  • Ottsville - Fridays 4 PM - 8 PM
  • Rittenhouse - Saturdays 9 AM - 3 PM
  • Saucon Valley - Sundays 9 AM - 1 PM
  • Emmaus - Sundays 10 AM - 2 PM