You probably know that Hershey, PA is the place to go in the Northeast for chocolate. But did you know there are also several excellent wineries near Hershey-Harrisburg?
My girlfriends and I spent a few days touring vineyards in the area and sampling the sweet, the dry, the bubbly – and everything in between.
Spring Gate Vineyard
Spring Gate Vineyard is a beautiful, spacious farm with a barn that houses their tasting room. An enclosed patio – lit with twinkling lights and patio heaters for warmth and ambiance – offers additional seating. There’s also a large outdoor seating area.
Besides the warm, inviting feel of this vineyard, the TV and movie-lover in me was immediately intrigued by a sign for their “Harry Potter Trivia Night.” Turns out, Spring Gate Vineyard has tons of fun events year-round! You can enjoy live music, open mic nights, food and music festivals, trivia nights and other special events.
One thing to note is that you can not taste all the wines they sell. Their tasting menu varies week to week with 8-10 selections from still wines to sparkling wines and at least one cider.
When you need to eat, food trucks and local caterers are on-site to provide a nosh. Due to the size, outdoor space, availability of food, and special events, Spring Gate Vineyard would be a great place for a special celebration or a family day out.
Spring Gate also has a brewery and the largest bier garten in central Pennsylvania. With almost 3,000 square feet of indoor space, an acre of patio, and an acre of grass, this place is huge.
There is so much happening, be sure to check out the Spring Gate Vineyard web site for details. They are open year-round, Tuesdays through Sundays.
The Vineyard at Hershey
The small, farmhouse tasting room at the Vineyard at Hershey is a great spot to taste some unique wines. In addition to dry and sweet wines, they have brandy-infused wines and a “Frostbite” wine made from Vidal grapes that were carefully allowed to freeze.
They also offer their “DeCiders.” I tried the Presidential Peanut Butter Cider, with a description that says it will “lead your tastebuds in moments of indecision and crisis.” Yes, it sounds bizarre. And I’m not sure I’d drink it regularly, but it was absolutely intriguing. Even if you don’t like cider, give them a try.
The Vineyard at Hershey also has a brewery. There are rooms available for private events, and VIP experiences offer a behind-the-scenes look into their wine-making or brewing practices.
The Vineyard and Brewery at Hershey has events for everyone. Comedy nights, cooking classes, art classes, glass-blowing, Zumba, yoga, live music, and puppy hugging. That’s right. I said puppies and wine.
I think the tasting room at The Vineyard at Hershey would be perfect for a small, intimate gathering of friends or a girls night out.
Check out The Vineyard at Hershey’s event calendar for more details. The tasting room is open seven days a week year-round.
The Grandview Vineyard lives up to its name. Just check out this grand view.
With windows galore and a gorgeous deck overlooking the vineyard, Grandview is the perfect spot for a party or celebration.
Their Gold Rush Margarita Wine was a favorite among our group. The mulled wine made with Grandview’s Ruby Red was my personal favorite.
Grandview also has a full calendar of events including live music, wine glass painting, yoga, and several wine and food pairing nights (truffles, cupcakes, even Girl Scout Cookies!).
The spacious tasting room and large deck lends itself perfectly to parties and special events where you need room for a lot of people. But it’s also just the right space for you and your girlfriends at the tasting bar! Grandview Vineyard is open year round, Thursdays through Mondays.
Cassel Vineyards of Hershey
Cassel’s cozy tasting room reminded me of a log cabin with its warm wood interior and high ceilings. Their Vidal Blanc was one of my favorite wines of the weekend.
They a have a beautiful outdoor space and live music in the summer. Sadly, it was pouring rain when we visited and I didn’t get any outdoor photos.
Cassel Vineyard would be a wonderful place for a moderate sized gathering. Their tasting room is the perfect size to provide intimacy with still enough room to mingle and taste at the bar. Their tasting room is open Thursdays through Sundays, March – December. Their summer concert series runs every Friday and Saturday night, June – September.
CrossWinds Winery at Hershey
CrossWinds Winery owners Ed & Linda Jansen are both pilots and they built a small airport in the vineyard! You’ll find that aviation theme prevalent in their labeling and décor.
This winery features a nice tasting bar, a small room to host private events, and some excellent Rieslings. I also loved that they offered gluten-free pretzels for our gluten-sensitive friends. It’s the little things. And they have some really fun wine-related gift items!
CrossWinds Winery also has events such as art and cooking classes and food and wine pairings. Check their web site for the latest.
CrossWinds would also be a wonderful place for a small gathering of friends or a party or special occasion. The owners are super friendly and are happy to customize an event for you! This award-winning winery is 2.5 miles north of Hersheypark. They offer tastings Fridays through Sundays, no appointment needed.
Planning Your Own Winery Tour
Here’s how to plan your own winery tour of the Hershey-Harrisburg area:
- Once you’ve decided on a date check these vineyards’ websites to confirm hours and fun events.
- Choose a couple great restaurants in the Hershey-Harrisburg area to break up all that wine tasting! I recommend a hearty breakfast or brunch before tastings, a light snack in the afternoon, and then dinner.
- Hire Unique Limousine to drive you around! We loved being able to sit back and relax while someone else took care of the driving and logistics. They can even plan your day for you! You definitely don’t want to drive on a trip like this.
- Don’t forget to stock up! When you find a wine you love, buy it. Then buy some for friends and family. Yes, you’re having a great time tasting, but it’s also a perfect opportunity to buy wine and gifts for everyone on your list.
- Looking for more? Here’s a list of 13 things to do in the Hershey-Harrisburg area.
My visit to Hershey-Harrisburg wine country was hosted by Visit Hershey & Harrisburg. All opinions are my own.