Best Wineries and Breweries for Agritourism
If you’re a seasoned traveler or aspire to be one, you might have heard the term “agritourism” recently. As you probably guessed, it’s a mash-up of “agriculture” and “tourism,” so it’s pretty easy to glean the term’s meaning. In the broadest sense, agritourism is agriculture-centric tourism — attractions people are willing to travel for that take place on a farm, a ranch or in a similar setting.
But agritourism attractions can involve a lot. It can be something as simple as picking a Halloween pumpkin at your local patch or a larger commitment, like spending a month working on a farm that produces and sells crops. Recently, the world of agritourism has welcomed wineries and breweries to the fold. Ever wondered what it takes to make a vineyard flourish or to harvest hops? Find out at one of these five breweries and wineries — which are some of the best in the U.S.
1. Maine Beer Trail
The Maine Beer Trail encompasses a whole slew of breweries — more than 80 total — so it’s a great way to explore the state and check out some of its coolest farm breweries. Head to the historic seaside village of Waldoboro to see the Odd Alewives Farm Brewery, which is housed inside of a renovated 1850s-era barn and offers 22 untamed acres to explore. Or, sign up for a Community Forage to bring in fresh ingredients for Urban Farm Fermentory in Portland.
2. Wisteria Farm and Vineyard
Tucked away in the Blue Ridge Mountains of Stanley, Virginia, the Wisteria Farm and Vineyard dates back to the 1890s. The original Victorian house is now the centerpiece of a working farm and vineyard, so don’t be surprised if you see chickens and sheep milling about as you sip on a glass of wine. Guests are invited to pack a picnic, grab a bottle in the tasting room and enjoy their spread down by the gurgling creek that runs through Wisteria Farm and Vineyard.
3. New Mexico Ale Trail
The Red River Brewing Company is nestled up high in the mountains of Red River, New Mexico. It’s a natural oasis where you can sit on the patio, sip on a locally crafted beer and drink in beautiful views of the surrounding area. The Red River Brewing Company is just one particularly stunning stop along the New Mexico Ale Trail. Similar to the Maine Ale Trail, this Southwest version takes travelers all across the state to taste beers brewed on farms and in urban settings.
4. Waredaca Brewing Company
If you’re looking to visit every state in the country on one epic, boozy road trip, you can cross off Maryland after you check out Waredaca Brewing Company. The tasting room is located right on the family farm — it’s been in the clan for about 60 years — and it also plays host to a herd of horses. So, after you grab a pint in the tasting room, feel free to stick around and go for a True Brew Trail Ride. You can also sign up for one of the Farm-to-Table Dinners that Waredaca often hosts.
5. Terra Blanca Winery & Estate Vineyards
Head to the picturesque state of Washington to visit Terra Blanca Winery Estate & Vineyards, a family-owned estate where you can tour the fields and learn about the farming practices that make this winery so special. The guided tour begins with a stroll through the Red Mountain vineyard, followed by a step-by-step introduction to the wine-making process and some time to explore the “barrel caves” beneath the tasting room. At the end, kick back with a glass.
Now that you have a few stops added to your agritourist bucket list, start planning your cross-country road trip. You can learn a little about the culture in each state you visit and enjoy a high-quality local brew or wine while you’re at it!