Bar Harbor Cellars, Bar Harbor, ME

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While on our trip to Bar Harbor with Amanda, we of course we had to stop at Bar Harbor Cellars Winery and Vineyard. They are located just outside the downtown area on Sweet Pea’s Farm. There is a nice, big shop and tasting room as well as a cafe.

 

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Most of their wine is made from grapes they purchase from Europe. They buy just the vintages that they like, so they are getting exactly what they want. The wines are styled after the area the grapes come from. They are sent to Italy and pressed to their specifications, then shipped to Quebec and down to Maine, being kept cold the whole time.

 

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Old fashioned press

 

They ferment with just the natural sugars from the grapes; they do not use any added sugars. They do grow some grapes on site, but not nearly as much as they need. Maine is not the most ideal place to grow grapes.

 

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Our tastings:

Riesling 2013
This was a fairly dry Riesling with a hint of sweetness, and a dry finish.

 

Gewurztraminer 2013
This was a little sweeter than the Riesling, but still fairly dry.

 

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Syrah 2013
This was a bit sweet, a little black cherry flavor. It was good, we all liked this. Would pair well with a bold cheese or chocolate.

 

Pinot Noir 2012
Amanda was the only one to taste this one. She really liked it, light enough for summer, but enough body for the winter, with a smooth taste.

 

Red Zinfandel 2013
Peppery, a real intense wine. Definitely made for having with a meal.

 

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Megan picking out some wine

 

Fruit & Sweet Grape Wines

Apple-Blend
We liked this, a sweet wine, but a good sweet, not overly sweet or sugary tasting, light in body, easy drinking.

 

Cranberry
Strong Cranberry taste, almost taste liked cranberry juice.

 

Black Curant-Apple
Made as a desert wine. 40% apple and 60% black currant. Complex for a fruit wine, lots of interesting flavors. Mark and Amanda liked this, told it goes well with spicy food.

 

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Apple-Raspberry
40% apple and 60% raspberry, Megan described it as jam like.

 

Icewine Cab. France
A rare, red ice wine, made with 2,000 – 3,000 grapes, in each bottle. Sweet, but a complex flavor. Really good, Mark tasted apricot, Megan said Fig, good either way, but more on the expensive side as it is an ice wine.

 

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They have a cool, rustic barn building with all sorts of local treats as well as all their wine for sale. The tasting bar is pretty big with plenty of room at the back of the barn.

 

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There were these really cool fountains outside made from old wine barrels. They are just outside Cafe entrance, which we did not have a chance to eat at.

 

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Megan and Amanda with their wine selections

 

 

Regular Hours

Opened Memorial Day to Columbus Day

10:00 am – 5:00 pm

 

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Our other stops along the way…

Bar Harbor Brewery only 1 mile away.

Tree Spirits Winery and Distillery in Oakland, ME

Dragonfly Winery in Stetson, ME

Oak Pond Brewing Company in Skowhegan, ME

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Travessia Urban Winery

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We recently took took a slight detour while on the way to the Cape to New Bedford to visit Travessia Urban Winery. Marco Montez is the owner and head winemaker at Travessia, which opened in 2008 to the public. Marco has spent his life around winemakers, from being born in Portugal where everyone made their own wine for family and friends, to experimenting with home made wine making himself.

 

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Travessia says on their website that: “We focus on making wine in small lots with primarily Massachusetts-grown grapes, such as Chardonnay, Pinot Grigio, Vidal Blanc, and Pinot Noir. Travessia wines are an authentic reflection of our local soils and micro-climate. We love to experiment and push the boundaries but our wines are also made with simplicity.”

 

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The have a pretty big sized tasting room. They have 2 bars about the size of the one shown above and plenty of standing room. The room itself was very well put together. We each did a tasting of the 5 wines they had available for $6 each, and you get to keep the glass.

Their wines:
Chardonnay
60% unoaked – 40% oaked. Good flavor balance, slightly dry.

Riesling – Semi-dry
Right in middle of sweet and dry. Semi-sweet, tasty.

Vidal Blanc
This was the sweetest of their offerings. Made from a hybrid French grape, native to Massachusetts. We went home with a bottle of this.

 

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Rose Pinot Noir
Not what we were expecting from a Rose, as we usually don’t enjoy Rose wines. This one was semi-sweet with a good flavor, very drinkable, a good summer porch wine.

Pinot Noir – Dry
Not bad in regards to a darker Red. Megan would have it with a steak in the Winter.

 

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All the wines were pretty good, solid all around. We thought maybe these would be good wines to bring to a party where you were going to share, the wines are pretty drinkable and nothing is too extreme or harsh in flavor, making them enjoyable by all.

The downfall was really the service when we were there. They were not very welcoming when we first came in. We were kind of rushed through the tasting, it seemed like we were more of a distraction, even though there were 2 people working and we were the only visitors at the time. They did not really engage with us a about the wine, just gave us the one line or 2 description about the wine when we asked and that was about it.

We recommend going for the wine, but make sure you are just going for the wine, not the education. Hopefully our experience was abnormal, so let us know if you stop by!

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Hours

Wednesday – Saturday: 12:00 – 6:00

Sunday: 12:00 – 5:00