DRINK MAINE-November + December 2011
By Sophie Nelson | Illustration by Eric Hou
“Cellardoor Winery was started by a husband-and-wife team in the 1990s. They found the property, fell in love with the place, purchased it, and cleared the land to plant vines and start the winery. The vines were planted experimentally—Cellardoor was Maine’s first commercial vineyard. I came upon the property on a cold wintry day in December of 2007 after learning the place was for sale. I too fell in the love with the property and views—and the idea of owning my own small business after spending 21 years as a portfolio manager at Fidelity investments—so I decided to purchase it. A little love and a lot of work later, we have restored the tasting room, which is in a barn from the 1790s, and I am immersed in my new venture here in Lincolnville.”
What Cellardoor wines have you been especially enjoying lately?
“The Cellardoor Petite Sirah and the Cellardoor Chardonnay. Both are new releases this year that feature our new label. I am so happy and proud to serve these wines at both the tasting bar and my table at home. The petite sirah is our driest and most full-bodied red with rich aromas of plum and bourbon, and our oak-aged chardonnay is packed with apple aromas with a touch of vanilla and spice on the back end.”
What’s on the horizon?
“We have recently added a new event facility to our tasting room complete with full commercial kitchen. In that space, we can host cooking classes and various private events, and with the purchase of lunch we are now able to sell our wines by the glass to guests. This adds a completely new and exciting dynamic. Guests can sit and take in the view on our deck space while enjoying a moment away from their daily grind. It is really important to my team and me that we provide a rich, dense, and enjoyable winery experience for our guests.”
What Cellardoor Wines pair well with holiday fare?
“Our new rosé, Rugosa Grande, is a light and fruity blend of grenache and syrah that would do nicely with turkey and all the fixings. The Cellardoor Gewürztraminer is a lovely choice, as the slight sweetness is a nice contrast with all of those savory seasonal flavors, and finally the Cellardoor Barbera—not too light and not too heavy, this wine is sure to please a wide variety of palates at the dinner table.”