Thursday, July 20, 2017

Winery's treehouses offer means of escape while offering vineyard views


By Jennifer Primrose | July 20, 2017
Twitter: TriangleAT | Facebook: Triangle Around Town | Instagram: trianglearoundtown


What is it about a treehouse that sounds so appealing? I’m not quite sure, but combine that with a winery and my interest is definitely piqued. Twenty minutes southeast of Charlotte is Monroe, and there is where you can find Treehouse Vineyards and Winery. I was finally able to pay them a visit and was very pleased with the overall experience.


Included in the $8 tasting price is a winery tour, where we learned all about this vineyard – the history, the operation and its wine. Our tour started outside overlooking the vineyard, where we learned more about the history of the winery, the owners and its grapes. 



Next we were escorted inside to see where the magic happens and the wine making takes place. We also learned about the bottling and label making process. Following our tour, we were directed into the tasting room where we were all seated at tables for a sit down tasting with pre-selected wines, both dry and sweet. What made this experience unique as opposed to other wineries we’ve visited over the years is the group tasting accompanied by story-telling of the family and history of the vineyard.  




Treehouse Vineyards and Winery is family-owned and operated and sits on a 200-year-old family farm that opened to the public in 2010. The owners are Phil and Dianne Nordan and they had grape vines on their farm for more than 50 years. Well before the winery became a reality, Phil had decided to build a treehouse that overlooks the vineyard back in 1999, and named it Date Nite.



The treehouse is not built for overnight stays, but does include a couch, outdoor fireplace, phone and rocking chairs, and it can be rented out for up to six adults. Before Treehouse officially opened, Papa’s Dream was built, an overnight treehouse overlooking the rock quarry and vineyards, also available for rent. And lastly, Horsefeathers Hideaway, which can be described as a “modern spacious treehouse” for 2 to 8 people.
The first vines at Treehouse were planted in the Spring of 2005 and currently include eight varieties of Muscadines, which are native to the area – with one variety coming directly from “The Mother Vine” in Manteo. Also planted on the grounds are Carlos and Noble grape varieties, both in the Muscadine family. The grapes for the Viniferous wines come directly from Yadkin Valley.
The main reason to visit a winery is of course the wine. To be as upfront and honest as possible, I simply do not care for muscadine wine. I usually lean more towards dry-style European or California wines, primarily red wines such as Cabernet Sauvignon, Merlot or Malbec. That’s not to say that muscadine wine is not popular, especially in our state. One reason I enjoy wine tasting so much, and especially with others, is that we never have to agree, as everyone’s tastes are different and unique. I prefer to blog about my experiences. And luckily for me, Treehouse produces more than just Muscadine wine. They also make a Merlot, Cabernet Sauvignon, a dry white blend and a reserve Riesling – in addition to several award-winning Muscadine wines.



The wines on our tasting menu on that warm Friday evening were “Her Way” Cabernet Sauvignon; “Liquid Sunshine” – a blend of Chardonnay, Sauvignon Blanc and Pinot Gris; “Rock Quarry” Riesling (a reserve wine); "Windy Hill" – a semi-dry white Doreen blend; "Sweet Union" – a sweet white Carlos; "Date Nite" – a Doreen blend; "Bailey's Blend" - a semi-sweet red muscadine blend; "Sunset Hills" – a sweet Carlos and Noble blend, and we finished with a wine slushie with our choice of wine which was surprisingly refreshing for such a warm July evening.



The property encourage guests to enjoy a picnic overlooking the scenic vineyards with a glass or bottle of wine. Or better yet, if you’re looking for a unique experience or perhaps a special date night, consider renting the Date Nite Treehouse for an afternoon or evening. We were not able to tour the treehouses on this visit and we later learned that everything is booked into 2018. So, plan ahead!



Treehouse Vineyards also hosts several events, such as:
  • Murder mysteries
  • Live at the Vines music events
  • Dance nights
  • Craft and wine nights
  • Treehouse trivia
One of the signature events takes place on Saturday, September 16 from 11 a.m. to 7 p.m. and that is the Grape Stomping Harvest. This even will include craft and food vendors, contests, bands, tastings and tours. Rumor also has it that a vineyard 5K run may be in the works as an upcoming event.

All in all, I was pleasantly surprised by this experience, and did walk away with a bottle of "Her Way' Cabernet Sauvignon.



Treehouse Vineyards
301 Bay St
Monroe, North Carolina
704-283-4208

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