Wednesday, May 2, 2012

Did you know?... About Urban Wineries

In the universe of wine, there are winemakers who step out of the vineyard to focus on the production of the wine. These winemakers buy their grapes from winegrowers, and it follows that they can establish production facilities almost anywhere: no farm required. So, it makes sense that in recent years a smattering of wine production facilities have popped up in cities across the U.S. Considering that breweries have been in city centers for centuries, it shouldn't surprise us when we come across an urban winery, and yet, it's difficult for us to divorce the vineyard from the wine-making, even though it's happening more and more. These "urban wineries" have several business models available to them.

Wine Press At Brooklyn Winery

Commercial wineries function the same as traditional wineries, except they buy the grapes to produce the wine they sell. They often also incorporate tasting rooms, bars, or restaurants attached to the production facilities.

DIY facilities (aka "Custom Press") allow private individuals and groups to make their own barrels of wine, and often provide professional guidance for purchasing the grapes and producing the wine. [These same places cater to vineyards who do not have on-site production facilities but who need a place to produce their wine.]

Some wineries combine the two: they produce their own wine and provide facilities and knowledge to help amateurs make theirs as well.

While these businesses are often located in the larger wine growing countries, they can be found sprinkled throughout the cities of the US, giving consumers the opportunity to see the process--and perhaps try their own hand at wine making--much closer to home.

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