Wines are impacted greatly by the areas in which their grapes grow and the palates of those that carefully craft them. Whether you are looking for a local winery that produces uniquely-Ohio wines or a chic destination to try something new, there is a local business that caters to your needs. Check out these destinations we adore:
The Winery At Wolf Creek
Tucked into the landscape within the Barberton limits is a stunning vineyard. The Winery at Wolf Creek, located at 2637 South Cleveland Massillon Road, will enchant the eye and delight the senses.
“Our most popular wines are blends,” explains Owner Andy Troutman. “We grow our own grapes, as well as some fruits. I always joke that if everybody liked the same wine, we’d only sell one.”
Alas, we all have very different palates, so the winery produces a number of delightful varieties, with charming names such as White Lies, Redemption, and Sweet Revenge. Troutman adores the opportunity to produce such a variety, as he discovered his love of grape growing at a young age.
“It started as a 4-H project,” he chuckled. “When I was 10, I started growing grapes. In junior high, I tried my hand at wine making, and I realized it might be something I would like to pursue as a career.”
Now, he spends many of his days at Wolf Creek, which his family purchased in 2002, and he prides himself on being able to produce a product that people enjoy. He and his staff enjoy introducing visitors to new wines and helping them find a product that is perfect for them.
When asked what his favorite wine is, Troutman laughed and responded, “My favorite wine? The cheap answer is the one in my glass.”
He goes on to explain that, since Ohio’s weather fluctuates so often, each year produces different vintages that stand out. “My favorites change from year to year. If we have a hot sunny year, our red wines might shine. After cooler years, white wines might be exceptional. Or maybe a fruit wine will stand out. It’s a perfect storm, with the correct weather, variety, and treatment, and we get something different every year. The potential for variety makes Ohio wines unique.”
As a mom-and-pop type destination, the winery thrives off of interaction with the community. Since it is open seven days a week, every day offers another opportunity to swing by and taste wines. Plus, the location offers visitors the opportunity to feed goats.
“We love what we do. The winery has been here since 1985, and we hope to continue for many years to come.”
For more information, visit WineryAtWolfCreek.com.
H2 Wine Merchants
“We are kind of a coffee shop that serves wine,” laughs Co-owner Whitney Harris as we sat in the cozy, rich environment of the Medina Square shop. The atmosphere is rustic, yet historic, and customers meander about perusing the rows of wine lining the interior walls. Her description certainly suits the atmosphere—relaxing music trickles through the air, and a group sipping libations laughs, the sound a ripple of silver as it floated over to our little group that was situated on cozy leather couches.
“We are a retail wine store,” continues Co-owner Patrick Huth, “Our selections come from all over the world, and while the pricing is comparable to that of a grocery store, the experience is truly unique.”
For three years, H2 Wine Merchants has served the Medina area. Their employees have a vast knowledge of all things wine-related, and many of them have spent decades working in the wine industry. They ensure that customers find exactly what they are looking for, and offer expert advice to help introduce visitors to new beverages that their palate will find favorable.
“For example, one may come in looking for a light, sweet wine to enjoy during the summer,” explains Harris. “Sparkling wine is a wonderful summertime beverage.”
“Rosés are also a wonderful summertime drink,” chimes Huth. “When we first opened, there seemed to be a stigma, or an underappreciation, toward rosés. But it certainly seems to be disappearing, and that is to the benefit of this deliciously crisp and refreshing wine.”
Three rosés are actually on the in-house pour list, a collection of 24 wines that you can enjoy by the glass during your visit. In addition to the wines, H2 Wine Merchants also serves drinks including craft beers, whiskey, ryes, bourbons, and scotches.
“It is a very relaxing environment, and many people find it easy to spend hours here,” says Harris. “Whether you are looking for the perfect wine or just a place to relax and enjoy a drink and tapas, you will adore the comfortable milieu that H2 Wine Merchants offers.
It’s Your Winery
It’s Your Winery is one of Medina’s hidden gems, tucked away from the hustle and bustle of city traffic. Owner Dave Foltz started making wine in high school, and his initial start triggered in him an insatiable passion for winemaking,
“Here, you can come in and make your own wine,” he explains.”That’s what sets us apart. We have over 70 different types that you can make. We sell about 30 wines retail, and being an Ohio winery, most of them are sweet and fruity.”
Some of his popular summer flavors include Endless Summer, Green Apple Riesling, and an outstanding Cucumber Melon Sauvignon Blanc, all of which are a refreshing treat on a warm August day. It’s Your Winery has found a welcoming community, and is often discovered by locals at intimate wine festivals.
“Many try my wines at festivals and fall in love, and when they realize they can make it, well, they know they are going to have an unforgettable experience,” beams Foltz. “They can taste wines, design and personalize their own labels, and have a great time the whole while.”
The storefront of It’s Your Winery is brightly decorated and welcoming, but the backroom is where the magic happens. Winemaking tools line shelves, and corks are arranged beside the tools, seemingly eager to be paired with a delectable drink.
“You come in, decide which wine you would like to make, design your labels, start your wine, and come back in six to seven weeks. At this point, it is bottled up, then you cork it, cap it, and take it home. It is very simple, and it is sure to hit somebody’s sweet spot.”
Many locals visit It’s Your Winery to design personalized wedding wines, but the winery is truly an exciting experience for any occasion. Some even find that after starting, they’re hooked, and the process becomes a relaxing ritual that locals repeat year after year.
To schedule a wine tasting and to learn more about the winemaking process, contact Dave Foltz at 330.784.9463.