Cape May Winery & Vineyard was the second place we stopped at during our Cape May wine trip. Tom, Carol and I have been here multiple times. I always look forward to coming here. When I think of wineries and the beach, I think of this place.
Once, you get off the parkway, this is probably closest winery. I always try to grab a Cape May graphic tourism map, and if I don’t have one, I pick it up at Cape May Winery. Once, I see this map, I seem to know right where I am, although Tom would probably argue that point.
Upon entering Cape May Winery, there’s a gravel parking lot in front of the building. Actually, this place exemplifies the shore so much that even their gravel isn’t gravel, its broken up seashells that are worn down just enough that it wouldn’t split your tires.
Their entryway has a wooden archway, supporting a beautiful ivy-like plant. When you enter, you’re greeted by a staff member at a counter straight ahead of the entrance. To the right, there’s a stairway that leads to the upper deck, which I would highly recommend doing after sampling wines at the downstairs bar. Upstairs there’s a small indoor room with couches for relaxing. Just past that room there are two glass doors leading to a partially covered wooden deck. The deck is sprinkled with high top and low top wooden chairs and tables. There’s usually a fountain in the middle and plants dispersed throughout the deck. There’s also a bar up here, which seems to be used on busier occasions. The best thing about this deck is it overlooks the vineyard, you can sit there, sip your wine while smelling the sea air, and you can watch hawks fly around high above the trees that hug the border of the vineyard.
If you head towards the left upon entering the winery, you will find another bar, but to the left of that bar is a hallway that leads to the new expanded wine room. Just when I thought this place was great, they improved it. In this new room there are couches, additional tables and chairs. The wall on the right features barrels all the way up their high ceiling. Currently, there are paintings on the barrels. On the opposite side, is another tasting bar. Off the back of this room is a large doorway that leads to a ground floor, backyard patio. Here you can also sit at tables and chairs and enjoy your wine.
To add to the experience, Cape May Winery offers delicious cheese, jam and cracker platters. We usually purchase one of these and a bottle of wine to enjoy at the winery. Cape May Winery also sends you home with your tasting glass. I’ve been collecting. At first, there were medium sized glasses, then larger red wine goblet shape, now they send you home with short glasses (minus the stem). We’re up to 4. I love these! They have seashells printed on the glass along with their logo. If I had only these glasses, I’d be happy with them.
Sorry, I’ve rambled on, but this place provides a very enjoyable experience
Dry White Wines
2010 Barrel Fermented Chardonnay – This is usually one of my preferred wines here. I like tasting the buttery oaky-ness of their Chardonnay. There’s a hint of lemon, but not overdone. This is the Chardonnay that made me a Chardonnay fan.
2011 Cape May Chardonnay – This Chardonnay is appropriate if you don’t like oak.This wine just came out. It’s fruity (not sweet) and delicious. Feels and tastes light. Its fruitiness is enhanced on the finish.
Isaac Smith Chardonnay – Fermented in stainless steel, this wine presents a more dynamic fruit taste. This variety has more of an alcohol taste than the others.
Dry Red Wines
Isaac Smith Red Reserve – Tom said this one is good all around. The Red Reserve is described as presenting a blend of Syrah and Cabernet Franc with peppery notes and hints of blackberry.
Their Issac Smith variety is interesting, The label is shaped like a coffin and this line of wine is named after Issac Smith the local coffin maker in the 1820’s. The winery property was originally part of his estate.
2011 Cape May Riesling – I smelled apple when sipping this wine. It seemed a little sweet on the finish.
Lighthouse White – Fruity, clean and crisp, Lighthouse White was almost too sweet for me. This line of wine has a beautiful lighthouse label, painted by a local artist.
Lighthouse Riesling – I must have enjoyed this one because I drank it too fast to describe. It’s described as having light stone fruit and citrus flavors.
I like a lot of their options. There are even more delicious wines than what I’ve mentioned. This is a great place to add to a day trip or summer vacation (if you’re vacationing in the area). I apologize for not tasting more reds. I’m just so partial to whites. I try to occasionally mix it up for the red drinkers.
Their offerings, the elegance and ideal atmosphere in addition to the variety and delicious wines make this winery a 5.
5 Wine Glasses (Out of 5)