Addison Farms Vineyard may be a new favorite, but the family-owned farm is four generations strong. Leicester, where the vineyard is located, is a brief 17 mile drive from Asheville.
The farm dates back generations. While wine is a new crop here, it has already become a standout. The first wine grapes were planted in 2009, and the eventual goal is to convert 10 acres of farmland to vineyards by steadily planting new grapes each year.
To date, Addison Farms Vineyard is growing Cabernet Sauvignon, Cabernet Franc, Sangiovese, Petit Verdot, Petit Manseng, and Montepulciano grapes. Addison Farms Vineyard uses their own grapes as well as fruit from nearby Moon Lake Vineyard, Spring Branch Vineyard, and Two Moons Vineyard to produce their award-winning wine.
Addison Farms Vineyard made their first wines in 2011 and opened the tasting room in December 2012. Currently, their annual production is 1,000 cases of wine; this is expected to grow as more acres start to bear fruit.
In addition to tours and tastings, Addison Farms Vineyard hosts events, which are advertised on their website.
The tasting room is open on Thursday from noon to 5 p.m. (from May 1 to November 15) and year round on Fridays and Saturdays from noon to 5 p.m. and Sundays from 1 p.m. to 5 p.m. If you’re visiting outside of their schedule, you should contact the vineyard directly. They are often available to accommodate mid-week visitors with advance notice.
Reservations aren’t required for tastings, which cost $10 plus tax; however, the winery does recommend that you call ahead if you’re bringing a large group (8+ people). This helps them accommodate your party. Sample a flight of wine in the tasting room — most flights feature 7 to 8 wines, so you can also share a flight if you’re visiting several wineries — or grab a bottle for your group and take a picnic on the deck. You’ll take in views of the working vineyard and the backdrop of the mountains. On many afternoons, the winery is relatively quiet so you’ll feel like you are in your own little world.
The property is 55 acres large; on a winery tour, you’ll be able to see a fraction of the property and learn more about the owners and their approach to winemaking. You’ll go behind the scenes in the barrel room where you’ll learn about the wine aging process, find out how wine grapes are picked and sorted, and sample the different styles of wine made onsite. The tours are a fun way to explore the wine making process and it enriches your tasting flight when you understand all the hard work that goes into every glass. Tours are led by Jeff Frisbee, the present owner and winemaker, cost $30 per person, and are capped at 10 people. Tours take place on weekends at 2 p.m. and weekdays by prior appointment only.
Addison Farms Vineyard is a family operation in the fullest sense of the word. The winemakers have their hands in all aspects of the business, right down to designing the labels for the wine. Each wine is named for some aspect of the farm and its history as well. Ask the meaning behind a given bottle’s name and explore a little corner of the Asheville region’s agricultural history.
- When you arrive, continue up the driveway then take the first right to go to the tasting room
- Pets are not allowed onsite
- Large group tours are available by request; call or email the vineyard if you’d like to reserve a tour for more than 10 people or if interested in a weekday tour
- Addison Farms Vineyard hosts weddings of up to 100 guests, so consider this as a potential venue if you’re planning a North Carolina wedding