At the turn of the 20th century, North Carolina was the country’s largest wine-producing state, but prohibition — and the subsequent shift of land from growing grapes to growing tobacco — changed that in a big way. Over the past couple of decades, though, many parts of our state have started to move back to grapes.
That’s good news for wine lovers in the south, and as residents of Winston-Salem we’re located within easy driving distance of several great vineyards. Here are some of our favorite wineries to visit. (It was hard to narrow down this list to just a handful, and we consider that to be a very good problem to have!):
Raffaldini Vineyards: Though this winery is located in Ronda, North Carolina (about 45 minutes from Winston), while visiting you’ll feel more like you’re in Tuscany. The 42-acre vineyard and delicious wine options makes this an ideal spot to spend time with friends and family on a beautiful spring or summer day. (The staff also leads daily walking tours of the vineyard at 4 p.m.!)
Shelton Vineyards: Located in Dobson, North Carolina, Shelton Vineyards is a little less than an hour outside of Winston-Salem. This winery gives an incredibly educational tour, and they’re open every single day except Thanksgiving Day and Christmas Day. They also have a restaurant, The Harvest Grill, which offers “sophisticated comfort food” in both an enclosed patio and dining room setting. (We recommend bringing a bottle of their port home with you to enjoy with dark chocolate!)
Westbend Winery & Brewery: This vineyard is in Lewisville, making it especially accessible to Winston-Salem. (It’s only 20 or so minutes away!) Westbend often has live music on the weekends, and it’s a great pick when you have a beer lover among you since they offer both wine and beer.
JOLO Winery & Vineyards: Just a half-hour outside of Winston, this winery offers beautiful views of Pilot Mountain and Cox Lake, and brings eco-friendly focus to its wine production. They also have a well-known restaurant, End Posts, on site that gets rave reviews around the state.