Did you know that the scuppernong grape (a variety of the muscadine grape) is the state fruit of North Carolina? It was in North Carolina, on part of what is now Roanoke Island, where the first vineyards in America were discovered by British colonists in 1585. Today, a variety of grapes are grown throughout the state of NC on more than 200 vineyards from the coast to the mountains.
Within a one-hour drive of our beautiful Raleigh hotel, visitors can enjoy local wineries, vineyards and meaderies with dry reds, sparkling pinks and fruit-infused libations. As you are planning the itinerary for your next Raleigh getaway, consider adding an afternoon for wine tasting and vineyard touring. Below is our list of the 10 best wineries in Raleigh, NC and its surrounding cities.
1| Chatham Hill Winery
2| Cloer Family Vineyards
3| Gregory Vineyards
4| Honeygirl Meadery
5| Starrlight Mead
6| Hinnant Family Vineyards and Winery
7| Fireclay Cellars
8| Botanist & Barrel
9| Rock Of Ages Winery & Vineyard
10| A Secret Garden Winery
More interested in Raleigh’s top breweries? Check out our list of the Best Breweries in Raleigh!
1| Chatham Hill Winery | 8245 Chapel Hill Rd, Cary
Chatham Hill Winery opened in 1999 and was the first winery in the Raleigh/Durham/Chapel Hill area. Located just 8 miles from the StateView Hotel, Chatham Hill uses Yadkin Valley grapes to produce its varietal wines including chardonnay, viognier, merlot, cabernet sauvignon and cabernet franc. Visitors are welcome at Chatham Hill Winery on Fridays (1:00 – 11:00 p.m.), Saturdays (1:00 – 7:00 p.m.) and Sundays (1:00 – 5:00 p.m.) for wine tastings, winery tours and live music.
2| Cloer Family Vineyards | 8624 Castleberry Road, Apex
Cloer Family Vineyards is a short 17.6 miles from our Raleigh hotel. The owners, Tam & Pam Cloer, have worked to create an environment where every visitor feels like an old friend. Guests are welcome to enjoy a picnic on the lawn with a bottle of wine or join in a tour to see how their favorite wine is made from vine to glass. Cloer grows two types of muscadine grapes in its vineyards – noble and carlos. They also produce riesling, veranda and matador varietals sourced from vineyards in western North Carolina. Guests are welcome on Fridays from noon to 5:00 p.m. and on Saturdays from 11:00 a.m. to 5:00 p.m.
3| Gregory Vineyards | 275 Bowling Spring Dr, Angier
Gregory Vineyards is a 140-acre farm comprised of a 30-acre muscadine vineyard, a winery, multiple lakes and a seafood & steakhouse restaurant. Located 24.5 miles from the StateView Hotel, the vineyard hosts annual events, provides event space for parties & weddings and offers winery tours. Stop by Thursdays – Saturdays from 5:00 – 9:00 p.m. to enjoy dinner, wine tastings or a stroll around the vineyard.
Picnic packages are now available at Gregory Vineyards. Call Liz at (919) 369-3860 to book your perfect picnic today.
4| Honeygirl Meadery | 105 Hood St #6, Durham
Diane Currier, owner and operator of Honeygirl Meadery, is passionate about taking the goodness of nature (honey, flowers, berries, fruits and herbs) and putting it into a glass to enjoy. Diane uses only the freshest ingredients and proudly sells her mead (wine made from honey) creations at her storefront in Durham & at local farmer’s markets. The Honeygirl Meadery Tasting Room, located 25.3 miles from our Raleigh hotel, is open Fridays and Saturdays from noon to 7:00 p.m. and Sundays from noon to 6:00 p.m.
5| Starrlight Mead | 130 Lorax Ln, Pittsboro
Becky and Ben Starr are the owners and operators of Starrlight Mead, an award-winning meadery located 29.9 miles west of the StateView Hotel. This sparkling couple concocts fruit-infused, herb-infused and traditional honey meads. Visitors are invited to stop by for a bottle or tasting, join in their special events or participate in a how-to class. Starrlight is open Mondays through Saturdays from noon to 6:00 p.m. and Sundays from 1:00 – 5:00 p.m.
6| Hinnant Family Vineyards and Winery | 826 Pine Level Micro Rd, Pine Level
Hinnant Family Vineyards is the largest muscadine vineyard in North Carolina, stretching over 100 acres. This family-owned vineyard and winery has been creating award-winning wine varietals for almost 50 years. Several events are on the Hinnant Family Vineyard calendar for the upcoming months, but visitors are welcome for flights and tastings in the recently remodeled Tasting Room & Gift Shop on Mondays through Saturdays from 10:00 a.m. to 5:00 p.m. and on Sundays from noon to 4:00 p.m. Our downtown Raleigh hotel is only 36.7 miles from this vineyard.
7| Fireclay Cellars | 1276 Bowers Store Rd, Siler City
Named for the bright red clay where their vineyards are grown, Fireclay Cellars is a family-owned winery and vineyard located 41.9 miles from the StateView Hotel. Fireclay Cellars bottles generic and varietal wines including Chambourcin, oaked chardonel, Bordeaux-style red blend, valvin muscat and many more. Visitors are welcome to stop by for a tasting, book a group event or bring a picnic to enjoy with a glass of wine on the lawn. Fireclay is open from 11:00 a.m. to 5:00 p.m. on Mondays, Thursdays & Fridays and from 11:00 a.m. to 6:00 p.m. on Saturdays & Sundays.
8| Botanist & Barrel | 105 Persimmon Hill Ln, Cedar Grove
Botanist & Barrel is all about creating delicious, natural beverages without additives. Using old-world methods with a few modern conveniences, B&B crafts wines, fruited sours and real southern ciders. Guests are invited to the Tasting Room. Limited seating is available, but guests are welcome to bring their own chairs and blankets. Botanist & Barrel is 49.4 miles from our Raleigh hotel and is open from noon to 6:00 p.m. on Thursdays & Sundays and from noon to 7:00 p.m. on Fridays & Saturdays.
9| Rock Of Ages Winery & Vineyard | 1890 Charlie Long Rd, Hurdle Mills
Located 51.8 miles from the StateView Hotel, Rock of Ages Winery & Vineyard was started by Kevin & Kim Moore in the early 2000s. Their winery produces 33 different wines from grapes grown in their 26-acre vineyard next to a 4-acre lake. Stop by seven days a week from 1:00 – 5:00 p.m. to meet the Moore’s and learn how their winery is beautifully blending the old with the new.
10| A Secret Garden Winery | 1008 Airport Rd NE, Pikeville
A Secret Garden Winery is a true hidden gem of North Carolina, located just 57 miles from our Raleigh hotel. Using seven varieties of organic muscadine grapes, water, sugar and only the natural yeasts found on the grapes themselves, Linda Wall Hall and her family produce several varietals of muscadine wines. A Secret Garden wines are only sold at the winery. Wine tastings and tours are available by appointment only Wednesdays through Saturdays from 9:00 a.m. to 5:00 p.m.
Ready for a glass of wine? We are too!
While you pour yourself a glass, here are a few interesting facts you might not know.
- A vineyard is where the grapes are grown. A winery is where the grapes become wine.
- Mead is a wine made from honey. Berries, fruits or flowers are commonly added to the mead during the fermentation process to create unique flavors.
- Next time you purchase a bottle of wine, notice how the wine is identified on the label.
- Varietal wines are created from one primary type of grape which will appear on the label — chardonnay, cabernet sauvignon, sauvignon blanc and the like.
- Generic wines are created from grapes in a specific region and labeled as such — Bordeaux, Burgundy, Beaujolais, Rioja and Mosel.
- AVA (American Viticultural Area) is an established region where grapes are grown that contains distinct geographic and climatic qualities, setting it apart from the neighboring regions.
- Yadkin Valley is North Carolina’s first federally recognized AVA, totaling approximately 1,400,000 acres in the northeast corner of the state.